The number of Saudi Arabia's mobile phone subscriptions topped 41 million at the end of the third quarter, according to the country's Communications and Information Technology Commission. This compares to a mobile penetration of 162 percent. The quarterly growth is caused by increased competition between the three mobile operators in a country that has a growing population of 25 million. While subscriptions numbers have increased Mobily was the only one of the three providers to record a rise in net profit for the third quarter, posting a higher than expected SAR 807 million. STC's profits declined by 20 per cent to SAR 2.4 billion while Zain Saudi Arabia posted a 26.3 percent increase of its net loss. Broadband subscriptions rose to almost 2 million at the end of the third quarter, up from 1.3 million in 2008, the data showed. Fixed lines stood at 4.17 million with a penetration rate of 68 percent, almost unchanged compared to 2008 which the commission blamed on strong demand for mobile services.