Phones in Panama

Phones in Panama
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Updated 2017-07-31 08:19

Telecommunications trends in Panama are similar to those throughout the developed world, with mobile phones everywhere you look and a diminishing reliance on landlines, at least for personal users. Services are generally reliable and, although getting a landline installed can take some time, that is hardly unique.

In the late 1990s the well known international name Cable & Wireless moved into the country, bringing its global experience to bear on the national telecoms company in a sphere that was rapidly changing.

In 2003 the sector was opened up further and more recently the mobile phone sector reaped the benefit of increased competition, which brought prices down. Having said that, customer service has yet to catch up with technical capability and expertise.

Digicel Panamá launched operations in 2008, followed by América Móvil's Claro unit in 2009. This ended the duopoly enjoyed by Cable & Wireless Panamá and Telefónica's Movistar.

In addition to cost and features offered, location is a significant factor here, particularly out of the cities, with coverage being patchy in places.

This can complicate the choice if ideally you would take a cost-effective bundle involving phone, cable and internet, but there is no general rule and it will be worth asking around in your particular area before committing yourself. In the meantime, roaming with your existing provider is an option, if expensive.

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