January 19, 2024

As Lithuania moves towards a gigabit society, the transformation of which depends largely on the development of the country’s communications infrastructure, the Communications Regulatory Authority (RRA) completed a six-month Broadband Coverage Study in January.

“Knowing where we are and how far we have to go to get there is crucial for both Europe and Lithuania in order to achieve the ambitious goals of a gigabit society. The main objective of the study was therefore to assess the current coverage of electronic communications networks capable of delivering broadband services, including high bandwidth networks. We have been measuring broadband coverage in general for a number of years, but with this study we are putting a new spin on the statistics by assessing coverage geographically and showing it on an interactive map. This presentation of information will allow us to identify in more detail the areas where there is a lack of both private and public initiative to develop superfast broadband networks, i.e. the areas where both private and public sector efforts should be directed to achieve the ambitious gigabit society goals mentioned above”, explains Giedrius Pūras, a Member of the council of CRA.

The study collected data to determine the coverage requirements related to the conditions for the allocation and use of radio frequencies (channels) and the accessibility of electronic communications services provided under universal service obligations.

Users may also find this information useful in assessing the maximum speeds they can get in a given area. It is true that the map provides aggregated speed results from all networks, i.e. only the network that can provide the highest speed is displayed in a given location and individual providers are not disclosed.

Aims to encourage the use of high-speed services

According to G. Pūras, the survey collected data from 65 fixed line and 3 mobile operators that have developed their networks in Lithuania. The aggregated results will be made available to the public, businesses and decision-makers to maximise the interests of the growing number of electronic communications users. The data collected will be updated periodically in line with the pace of network development, but at least every 3 years. Future developments are also foreseen to improve the functionality of the data presentation.

“It should be noted that despite the relatively good availability of 1 Gbps data services, the number of users in Lithuania, who subscribe to such services is quite low, only 1.69 % of households subscribe to 1 Gbps internet access services. Therefore, we hope that the map published by the CRA will allow users to identify the availability of such services and will also encourage the use of these ultra-high-speed services in Lithuania”, – says a member of the council of CRA.

More investment will be needed

Marijus Balnys, the Head of the Broadband Network Coverage Survey, explains that, according to the results, broadband networks in Lithuania are not badly developed.

“For example, looking at the situation in Lithuania as a whole, the overall coverage of networks capable of providing low data rates (2, 10, 30 Mbps) is very good. However, the coverage of networks capable of higher speeds (100 Mbps and above) is somewhat lower, and that of ultra-high bandwidth networks (1 Gbps and above) is considerably lower. Thus, efforts are still needed to achieve the goals of a gigabit society. Looking at the situation in more detail, it can be seen that a minimum (2 Mbps) connection is available to the vast majority of households. The most popular 100 Mbps data rate is available to 8 out of 10 households, while only 3 out of 10 households can still enjoy the very fast 1 Gbps data rate”, says Mr Balnys.

The study aimed to assess the data rate capability of electronic communications networks: for each network, the maximum data rate that can be obtained is given, but not the specific rate requested by users.

According to the survey, the best network deployment rates were achieved in municipalities covering the territories of major Lithuanian cities, such as Klaipėda City Municipality. As M. Balnys explains, more operators are developing their networks and providing services in urban areas, which is not surprising.

“The situation is worst in municipalities bordering non-EU countries. These municipalities are characterised by lower population density and large forest areas, which makes the development of electronic communications networks even more difficult”, emphasises M. Balnys, Senior Adviser of the Electronic Communications Regulatory Group at the CRA. The results of the survey can be found on the CRA’s website or simply by clicking

The CRA’s Broadband Coverage Map allows you to see the coverage of a fixed, mobile or mixed electronic communications network by different speeds and by territorial level.

Updated on 2024-03-22