Communications in Uruguay

Communications in Uruguay

Telephones - main lines in use:996,701 (2004)

Telephones - mobile cellular:3,004,323 (2007)

Telephone system:some modern facilities
"domestic:"most modern facilities concentrated in Montevideo; new nationwide microwave radio relay network
"international:"satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations:AM 94, FM 115, shortwave 14 (seven are inactive) (1998)

Radios:1.97 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations:26 (plus ten low-power repeaters for the Montevideo station) (1997)

Televisions:782,000 (1997)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):5 (1999)

Country code (Top level domain): UY


In Uruguay, you can access the Internet mainly by using:
* DSL services, provided by the state owned telco company (ANTEL).
* One of the different Wireless ISP (which have a tendency to be more expensive because of high taxation and radio spectrum licenses costs).
* There are no access to the internet by means of Cable TV companies as of 2006 in its largest cities or at Uruguay's capital, Montevideo.
* As an option, some shopping malls and other commercial business offer WiFi access at their location.
* Cyber cafes are very common throughout the whole country, and very inexpensive (from about U$S 0.4 an hour).

ADSL in Uruguay

ANTEL, a telco company owned by the government, charges U$S 50 a month (about U$S 600 a year) for a 1536 kbit/s/128 kbit/s ADSL service. That is one of the most expensive DSL services in the region (which includes Argentina, Brasil and Chile), while wages in Uruguay might be lower than in said countries. Also, the services dinamically changes the IP address of the customer every 12 hours, making it difficult to use for tele-working. Antel enjoys a monopoly in the basic telephony area, and has successfully prevented other competitors (such as Cable companies) to enter the Internet service provider business. ISP are then forced to use other technologies, such as radio, to get to customers. Usually, the taxation and licensees for radio spectrum are also very expensive, in a way to artificially not allow these ISP to be cost competitive with Antel DSL service.

Some services by Antel as of January 2008 are:

* ADSL 384/128 kbit/s = 585UYU = 25USD a month.
* ADSL 768/128 kbit/s = 883UYU = 41USD a month.
* ADSL 1536/128 kbit/s = 1268UYU = 59USD a month.
* ADSL 2048/192 kbit/s = 1928UYU = 90USD a month.
* ADSL 3072/256 kbit/s = 4746UYU = 221USD a month.

Fixed IP address is provided with the 3 MBit/s option, otherwise dynamic IP is provided. VAT included.

The ADSL service is available if you have a corresponding land line with Antel.

Wireless in Uruguay

Dedicado is a local wireless ISP. It appeared before or about at the same time than Anteldata (about in 1999), but since ADSL was not available at the same time on every neighborhood, Dedicado had the majority of the permanent internet connections.As of November 2007, ADSL is available in every neighborhood in Montevideo, and in most other cities, and Dedicado lost a big market share, both because being more expensive and giving a bad service to their users. They started a big advertising campaign, but didn't pay attention to the technical details related to their amount of users, so their quality of service decreased.In 2005, they started deploying WiMAX services. However, as of November 2007, the service is not offered nor advertised yet.There are other wireless ISPs, but Dedicado is the main one.

ISPs in Uruguay

The main ISPs in Uruguay are:

* Anteldata, by ANTEL (
* Dedicado, by Dedicado (
* TelMex, also related to CTI Movil (
* Movistar (

Many of those services also have an installation cost, which is equal to one or two months of said service. It is not unusual for some people to get together to pay for one of these services, and share it by using WiFi or Ethernet.

After having successfully implemented a high priced/low speed environment for Internet access, where competitors are either left out (Cable) or forced to lower or more expensive technologies (Dial up, Radio), Antel has started providing packages where Internet access is limited either by a maximum amount of time, or a maximum amount of bytes transferred (30hs access, 60 hs access, 1 GB access, 3 GB access, 10 GB access). After reaching whatever limit that particular plan has, Antel starts charging extra, many times almost up to 20 to 30% more a month than if you had the corresponding (in terms of line bandwitdth) flat rate service.


:"See also :" Uruguay

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