Urban Guatemala Communication Profile

country overview

Mobile Communications: As in much of Latin America, Guatemala’s mobile communications market has seen exponential growth after years of low access levels. Helping this growth was the introduction of low cost prepaid mobile packages that have given low-income consumers the flexibility to use a phone only when they can afford it.

Internet: Internet use in Guatemala is overall quite low. However, in urban areas the internet is becoming popular even among low-income earners, as they make up about a third of all respondents who regularly access the internet.

Radio: Radio continues to be an important communication medium despite television's ubiquitous reach in urban areas.The radio industry is highly competitive, with several hundred stations ranging in size from local community radio to national broadcasts.

Television: Television is the communication medium of choice in urban Guatemala, leading all other media formats. As a weekly source for news, television is clearly the most popular medium, used by 97 percent of adults.

Newspaper: Guatemala has one of the highest illiteracy rates in Latin America at about 31 percent. Complicating matters is that large indigenous communities in Guatemala do not speak or      read Spanish.

Media Environment: Press freedom is preserved in Guatemala’s constitution under Article 35 and is generally respected by the government. News outlets are free to criticize the government but many journalists still face intimidation because of their reporting-often related to drugs, corruption, and organized crime.
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articles in focus

New Media: Although mobile phone use and access is becoming more widespread as costs drop, web access and use is still very low. Read more to see how our respondents are interacting with new technologies and communication methods in this region.

Public Opinion on Media and Governance:
Urban Guatemalans showed very low levels of trust in government institutions, while they still voiced strong support for democracy. Read more here to view urban Nicaraguans’ opinions on their Government, Public Institutions and the Media.

media outlet matrix

Most Popular Radio Stations

Most Popular TV Stations

Most Popular Newspapers

Most popular Websites

communication Habits: Demographic analysis

Older age groups are on par with youth in use of and access to television and radio but fall behind in terms of internet use and access. Although mobile access is more equitable than internet across all age groups, youth are most likely to use their phones extensively.


While income and education have some impact on whether respondents use traditional media regularly, they are significant factors in whether urban Guatemalans have access or use mobile phones or the internet. Low-income earners make up about a third of regular internet users. However, nearly all regular internet users have at least a secondary education

Men have a clear lead in terms of access to ICTs, especially to the internet, as well as in frequency of general ICT use. However, the smaller proportion of women who go online seem to use the web for social networking and blogging as frequently as men. Read more to see how gender plays a role in communication and media habits in urban Guatemala