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Telecommunications in Cuba consists mainly of NTSC analog television, analog radio, telephony, AMPS, D-AMPS, and GSM mobile telephony, and the Internet. Telephone service is provided through ETECSA (Telecommunications Company of Cuba), mobile telephone service is provided through the Cellular Telephone Company of Cuba (CUBACEL) and Caribbean Cellular (Celulares del Caribe, C-COM). Cuba's main international telecommunications links are through Intersputnik, with antiquated undersea telephone cables to the U.S., the West Indies, Spain, and possibly Italy.


An 1895 map of the first telephone network in Havana, Cuba on display in the ETECSA Telephone Museum.

Country code: +53

International call prefix: 119

Telephones - main lines in use: 1.2 million, 72nd in the world, less than 10 per 100 inhabitants (2009).

Telephones - mobile cellular: One million mobile phones at the end of 2010 (9 per 100 inhabitants), up from 621,000 in 2009 and 330,000 in 2008, when all Cubans were allowed to buy and use them for the first time. Mobile-cellular telephone service is expensive and must be paid in convertible pesos, which limits subscribership.[1][2]

Telephone system: 95% of telephone switches were digitized by end of 2006.[2] Principal trunk system is coaxial cable; fiber-optic distribution in Havana and on Isla de la Juventud; two microwave radio relay installations (one is old, US-built; the other newer, Soviet-built); both analog and digital mobile cellular service established; one international satellite earth station, Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean region).

New fiber-optic link: A new undersea fiber-optic link with Venezuela was scheduled for 2011.[3][4] In May 2012 there were reports that the cable was operational, but with use restricted to Cuban and Venezuelan government entities. Internet access by the general public still used the slower and more expensive satellite links,[5] until January 2013 when internet speeds increased.[6]


Main article: Radio Havana Cuba

Radio broadcast stations: 6 national radio networks, an international station, and many local radio stations. All state-owned and operated by the Cuban Radio and Television Corporation (ICRT), which manages Radio Rebelde, the largest AM network, and the SW service Radio Habana Cuba. Radio Marti, based in Miami, Florida and financed by the United States government, transmits Spanish-language radio broadcasts to Cuba.[2]

Radios: 3.9 million, 64th out of 188 in the world (1997)[7]


Television broadcast stations: 4 national TV networks and many local TV stations. All state-owned and operated by the Cuban Radio and Television Corporation (ICRT). TV Marti, based in Miami, Florida and financed by the United States government, transmits Spanish language TV broadcasts to Cuba. The American Forces Network (AFN) has a station intended for U.S. military personnel at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base.[2]

Televisions: 2.64 million, 54th out of 185 in the world (1997)[8]


Internet users in Cuba per 1,000 inhabitants (2002-2011) according to Cuban state statistics ONE[9]

Internet users: 2.8 million users, 79th in the world, roughly of 26 percent of the population in 2012.[10] 1.6 million, 79th, 12% in 2010.[2]

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2, Empresa Telefónica de Cuba, S.A (ETECSA) and Colombus (2003)

Top level domain: .cu

A special permit is required to use the Internet. Access to the Internet is heavily controlled, and all e-mails are closely monitored.[11][12]

The Cuban authorities have called the Internet "the great disease of 21st century" due to 'counter-revolutionary' information being available on a number of websites, some of which are official news sites.[13] As a result of computer ownership bans, computer ownership rates were among the world's lowest.[12] However, since buying a computer was legalized in 2007, the ownership of computers in Cuba soared, dramatically increasing the number of Internet users. But, the rates still remain quite low, partially due to the high costs of systems and Internet usage per hour in contrast to the average monthly wage.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Marc Frank, Kevin Gray, and Eric Walsh (7 July 2011). "Cuban cellphones hit 1 million, Net access lags". Reuters. Retrieved 6 November 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Country report: Cuba", World Factbook, U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, 27 September 2011
  3. ^ Undersea cable to bring fast internet to Cuba, The Telegraph (UK), 24 January 2011 
  4. ^ Andrea Rodriguez (9 February 2011), Fiber-Optic Communications Cable Arrives In Cuba, Huffington Post 
  5. ^ "Fiber-optic cable benefiting only Cuban government", Miami Herald, 25 May 2012
  6. ^ Marc Frank (22 January 2013). "Cuba's mystery fiber-optic Internet cable stirs to life". Havana. Reuters. Retrieved 26 January 2013. 
  7. ^ "Radio receivers by country", NationMaster.com, accessed 6 October 2011
  8. ^ "Television receivers by country", NationMaster.com, accessed 6 October 2011
  9. ^ TECNOLOGÍA DE LA INFORMACIÓN Y LAS COMUNICACIONES EN CIFRAS. CUBA 2011 de la Oficina Nacional de Estadística e Información, Enero-Diciembre de 2011
  10. ^ "Percentage of Individuals using the Internet 2000-2012", International Telecommunications Union (Geneva), June 2013, retrieved 22 June 2013
  11. ^ a b "Internet Enemies: Cuba". Reporters Without Borders. March 2011. 
  12. ^ a b Claire Voeux and Julien Pain (2006). "Going online in Cuba: Internet under surveillance" (PDF). Reporters Without Borders. 
  13. ^ "Internet in Cuba", Reporters Without Borders, 2003

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telecommunications_in_Cuba — Please support Wikipedia.
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45 news items

Latin Times

Latin Times
Thu, 17 Sep 2015 13:59:57 -0700

According to a statement previously released by the White House, Cuba has an Internet penetration of about five percent—one of the lowest rates in the world. The cost of telecommunications in Cuba is extremely high, while the services offered are ...
The National Law Review
Fri, 06 Mar 2015 15:27:16 -0800

Since President Obama announced the United States' new policy to normalize relations with Cuba, talk about opportunities for U.S. telecommunications companies has flourished. That reaction only intensified when the Treasury Department and the ...


Wed, 17 Dec 2014 09:25:36 -0800

"The cost of telecommunications in Cuba is exorbitantly high, while the services offered are extremely limited," it said. "Telecommunications providers will be allowed to establish the necessary mechanisms, including infrastructure, in Cuba to provide ...
Lexology (registration)
Thu, 04 Jun 2015 04:15:46 -0700

Following changes in U.S. foreign policy toward Cuba, announced by President Obama in December 2014, U.S. government officials and industry players have begun exploring the development and expansion of Cuba's telecommunications infrastructure and ...


Fri, 03 Apr 2015 11:11:15 -0700

The likelihood of the U.S. lifting its 54-year-old trade and investment embargo on Cuba is proving a catalyst in boosting entrepreneurship in the island nation. Cuba under Raul Castro has in recent years steadily opened up the economy and removed many ...

New York Times (blog)

Whitehouse.gov (press release)
Wed, 17 Dec 2014 07:56:15 -0800

The cost of telecommunications in Cuba is exorbitantly high, while the services offered are extremely limited. The commercial export of certain items that will contribute to the ability of the Cuban people to communicate with people in the United ...


Thu, 25 Dec 2014 14:20:13 -0800

... to demand that the government “treat Cubans like citizens and consumers rather than subjects.” Cuba has an Internet penetration rate of only about 5 percent — among the lowest in the world — and the cost of telecommunications in Cuba is extremely ...

Lexology (registration)

Lexology (registration)
Wed, 22 Jul 2015 04:27:09 -0700

Cuba's classic cars are not the only relics from the 1950s on the island; Cuba's electricity grid, a dirty and inefficient infrastructure suffering under five decades of a U.S. embargo and a state-run economy falls into the antique category as well ...

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