SETAR logo, 1986-2003
SETAR logo. 2003-2016
SETAR renewed branding 2015
The history of SETAR dates back to 1986 when Aruba acquired its Status Aparte in the Dutch Kingdom. Servicio di Telecomunicacion di Aruba (SETAR) was established by merging the formerly called “Landsradio” and “Telefoondienst” (telegraph & telephone services of the Netherlands Antilles.
Before 1986 the telegraph and international telephone services were provided by the company that was owned by the Government of the Netherlands Antilles, headquartered in Curacao, the largest island of the Netherlands Antilles where all the political decisions were made at that time. The “Landsradio” provided the telegraph service and the “Telefoondienst” provided local calls.
SETAR owned by the Aruban Government and operating as a separate entity became the primary phone company on the island of Aruba. SETAR maintained a monopoly on telecom services until privatization of the company in 2003. The government of Aruba remained with an ownership of 100% of its shares.
With rapid global advent of technology, SETAR installed its first digital telephone exchange and a satellite ground station in 1989. That investment allowed Aruba direct communication via satellite with the rest of the world. A local digital switching exchange was installed between 1990 and 1991 and the second ground station was built in 1993, all in support of satellite communications and the mobile phone network, relying on the newest technologies of that year.
The local telecommunication infrastructure has continued to grow ever since, maturing into a very sophisticated network, which consists of 5ESS digital exchanges. The exchanges are interconnected by means of fiber optic.
In 1995, the first ISDN communication line was established between Curacao and Aruba and in November of that same year another breakthrough, the first Internet Service was introduced in Aruba under the SETARNET commercial name.
In 1996, SETAR’s local switching network became fully digitalized and the company underwent yet another technical update. In 1998, Aruba was linked via the Pan American Submarine Cable with St. Croix and the rest of the world. A fiber optic cable named Alonso de Ojeda enabled the connection with Curacao thanks to the emerging fiber optic technology.
In 1999, yet another landmark as SETAR started offering ISDN lines to businesses on island.
The millennium was marked by intense preparation. As the year 2000 flew by SETAR made the connection with the Americas ll Cable, a fiber optic submarine communication cable that extends among the USA, the Caribbean Island and parts of South America. That year SETAR introduced new services, such as Frame Relay and Prepaid Mobile Services. In 2001, SETAR started offering GSM technology in addition to SMS services.
In 2002, SETAR launched International Roaming that enabled customers of the mobile network to remain connected when traveling, also allowing visitors to stay in touch with their overseas interests while vacationing in Aruba.
In 2003, the company’s focus on customers intensified, when SETAR became an incorporated company with the local government as shareholder. When operating as a private-sector business-venture, innovation in technology products and services became even more important.
That year the company also adopted a new philosophy of One-Stop Shopping, under which all teleshop outlets were designed to handle all services, under one roof.
The move required a re-organization and more automation of internal systems. While stretching the company’s vision and resources, the move made consumers happy, improving access and availability. Currently, customers have access to all types of services at any SETAR Teleshop in addition to convenient online access to their accounts.
The much-anticipated launch of DSL, Digital Subscriber Line Service allowed customers simultaneous voice and high-speed data services, 24-hours a day, using just one single telephone line.
Meanwhile, the company’s building at Irausquin Plein in Oranjestad, slated for renovations, was face-lifted and re-opened in 2003, sporting the company’s new trendy look and image and new Logo.
That year also delivered considerable change from a customer’s point of view as all local telephone numbers expanded from six to seven digits.
E-Cuenta was offered for the first time in 2004, as SETAR customers could view their bill online. That same year SETAR launched GPRS, successfully presenting the public with a fun campaign nicknamed Waw! The lively introduction called for Style, Express, Enjoy, marketing access to internet, SMS, MMS, e-mail and download of images and games, through mobile phones. The Waw! service allowed customers to take photos, send and receive pictures, and gave them the extra option of publishing pictures in an electronic album in a dedicated blog under Waw! Blogging. This technological breakthrough became an instant success and started a trend where everyone wanted to have a Waw! Phone.
The age of Wi-Fi arrived here in 2004, when SETAR presented Wi-Fi internet services allowing visitors and locals easy access to the Internet while enjoying themselves on the beach or at any other location on the island.
SETAR renovates yet another outlet when the old building at Hendrikstraat was face-lifted and re-opened as a very modern and contemporary facility, upgrading that entire commercial area in the heart of Oranjestad.
In 2004, Telearuba was purchased. As a result of that purchase Telearuba, the island’s channel 13, was totally renovated and its equipment digitalized. The broadcast station re-launched with a new look and logo in March of 2005.
Telearuba then went on to produce, in conjunction with SETAR, the First Sparkling Tour event, Aruba’s own version of “Who’s got talent?” which became a national success.
In February 2005, SETAR finalized the purchase of Cable TV Aruba. In doing so SETAR acquired new technological possibilities for voice, video, broadband and mobile communications.
In 2005, with focus on better customer service, SETAR opened a repair center for mobile phones. For the elderly, SETAR introduced the 60 plus advantage packages that offered the island’s senior citizens discounts and special prices.
In 2006, SETAR introduced the BlackBerry service to its customers and began offering video conferencing services. Other highlights during 2006 were the upgrade of Wi-Fi service and the doubling of DSL service speed.
Services launched in 2007 included CDMA/EVDO network for roaming and other 3G services and Softphone services (VOIP). In 2008, SETAR introduced Fiber to the Home. This allowed all housing projects and homes under construction all-service installations, including phone, cable, Internet in just one connection.
In 2010, SETAR introduced the Android phones in Aruba, thus bringing the latest technology to the island where the customer could use a great variety of platforms and applications. Other 2010 highlights included: SETAR’s First Gaming Event targeting youth, two SETAR scholarships in cooperation with the Aruba Scholarship Foundation, and the introduction of a very innovative and cost efficient Hybrid Blackberry Phone Plan, awarding customers more cost control over their telecom usage. SETAR organized its SETAR First Gaming Event for youth gamers, who participated with a student discount card; and went in a Joint venture with 24ora.com content for Community Channel 49 (community news).
In 2011, while celebrating its 25th year of existence, SETAR upgraded the speed of internet, offered Video on Demand for cable subscribers, introduced 4G (HSPA+), and a new digital television guide (Passport Guide) which enables customers to access more information about programming of the different channels. A new channel lineup was introduced for Digital Cable Services. SETAR sponsored the largest music festival of local Calypso music during the Carnival season.
In 2012, SETAR opened a state of the art “SETAR Store” with an innovative concept where the customer can touch, feel and try the products and services of SETAR. That year, SETAR also introduced a new Prepaid Plan for 4G and created a Facebook Page “I like SETAR” that reached a great majority of fans of the company.
In 2013, SETAR celebrated its 10th anniversary as a privatized company. For every month of the year, the company held numerous promotions and raffles for its customers and the community. The newest Blackberry devices where launched: the Z10 & Q10. SETAR hosted the CANTO Conference 2013. SETAR revamped its kiosk at the Queen Beatrice Airport and amplified the services for the visitors and tourists.
In the trend of the island’s vision of going “Green” SETAR became a main sponsor and partner of the Green Aruba Symposium where international speakers and delegates attended. SETAR organized together with the National Library of Aruba a “Green Education Symposium” in Aruba especially focused on information and workshops for local high school kids.
SETAR conducted a very successful competition of recycling art among all schools in Aruba with used prepaid phone cards where the winners received cash and material prizes for their school.
In 2014, SETAR introduced attractive roaming bundles and HBO on Demand. In this same year, SETAR became the sole official authorized re-seller of the Apple Company. SETAR introduced LTE technology on the island of Aruba. Upgraded the Digital TV guide of the Cable Services and hosted the LACNIC Conference 2014.
In 2015, SETAR introduced their first Carnival App, making it possible for the Carnavalists to have the latest program of all the Carnival activities on the Island of Aruba. Thinking forward, SETAR replaced their E-cuenta by MiSETAR, for online service. A much more expanded version for its customers.
As part of the philosophy of SETAR of staying connected and continuing to create connections, LTE MiFi devices and service was introduced as another option for prepaid or postpaid wireless connection.
SETAR Cable Services expanded its Channels with even more HD channels and a project started this year to convert most ADSL connections into Cablenet connections, right into the vision of SETAR for the future. SETAR is convinced that the future lies into the home network. More and more our customers will find it easier to connect with their various devices and on the highest speeds of internet possible. The Cablenet speed was upgraded to 100 Mb/s. SETAR will strive for its customers to be connected inside and outside of their residences.
A new logo and corporate identity was introduced in 2015.
In 2016, SETAR launched its new and modern website. SETAR introduced payment in MiSETAR via Arubabank and launched the Self-Service Kiosk. Setar also organized SETAR’s Tech Adventure for Kids.
In 2017, SETAR held the “Cover Your World Campaign” and introduced the Self-Service Kiosk at all Teleshops, making it easier and faster for its customers to pay their monthly bill. SETAR also launched the SETAR App facilitating more online options for its customers.
SETAR introduced the SETAR Mainstreet Wi-Fi in downtown Oranjestad and LTE Roaming. Local Radio Stations were made available on Cable TV and SETAR introduced TVEverywhere and ESPN Play. SETAR also introduced SETAR Complete, which offers fixed line, Cable TV and internet in one package at a fixed monthly fee.
SETAR implemented a new Agile/SCRUM way of working throughout the company.
In 2018, SETAR celebrated 15 years as SETAR N.V. SETAR as an innovative company continues to invest in its products and shops giving its clients the latest and a new modern experience. In 2018, SETAR revamped the TeleKiosk at the Airport with a new modern design and the Self-Service Kiosk with Clarita (Rapido, Rapido). Teleshop Irausquin Plein was reopened with a State-of-the-Art modern design that reflects the nature of our island and the symbol of SETAR as the National Telecommunication Company. SETAR focused on continuous speed upgrades and the initiation of 5G implementation.
In 2019, SETAR organized the first Youth Tech Event with different workshops and information sessions on Tech and gadgets with local and international speakers and an experience hall for local kids to participate.
SETAR introduced the Hybrid Start Package at a more affordable price and SETAR Complete 60+ advantage package for the island’s senior citizens. Teleshop San Nicolas and Santa Cruz were reopened with a State-of-the-Art modern design.
SETAR launched the first Mobile Financial App for the island, named Pay.aw. With Pay.aw, you can pay by scanning a QR code at your favorite store, easily transfer money, and order directly from the app in the local currency.
SETAR upgraded its network to 4.5G Pro and in December SETAR announced an end-to-end 5G deal with Nokia for a full network transformation to bring 5G to Aruba.