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 Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The global handset market is forecast to see slowing growth for 2008, with year-on-year growth only achieving 5.7% according to the IMS Research Online Cellular Database. This is significantly lower than previous years, which enjoyed double digit growth. Shipments for new handsets are forecast to hit 1.19 billion for 2008, up from 1.12 billion in 2007.

The region that will experience the least impact is Asia, with China and India continuing to perform strongly, resulting in 10.7 percent growth from 2007 to 2008. The Americas will only experience 7% growth, largely as a result of economic challenges being faced in the US. Europe is forecast to experience negative growth at -1.2%, largely due to challenges being faced by the large number of highly penetrated markets.

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Source: Cellular News.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008 10:41:27 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

CEO Marwan Al-Ahmadi has revealed that Zain Saudi Arabia plans to start operations by June of this year, over a network initially covering 53% of the population. Roaming agreements with rivals Saudi Telecom Company (STC) and Mobily will be sought to increase coverage further, although the executive did add that Zain planned to be fully dependent on its own infrastructure within the next three years.

Source: TeleGeography.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008 8:33:45 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, March 25, 2008

China Netcom has posted an unexpected increase in full-year profit after signing up more broadband subscribers than expected. Net income for the twelve months ended 31 December 2007 rose to RMB10.58 billion (USD1.5 billion), from RMB10.55 billion a year earlier. Sales rose to RMB84 billion from a restated RMB84.1 billion in 2006. During the year Netcom’s broadband subscriber base rose 37% to 19.77 million, while its local access customers fell by 2.8% to 110.82 million, of which 84.6 million were fixed line (down 2.3% year-on-year) and 26.2 million PHS (down 4.1%). Broadband ARPU climbed 3.9% to RMB67.4 while the corresponding figure for local access slipped by 9.6% to RMB36.6.

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:50:01 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

MyBroadband.co.za reports that the South African broadband market now has more than one million broadband subscribers, made up mainly from ADSL and HSDPA customers. Dominant telco Telkom South Africa has 415,000 ADSL users and is on track to hit its target of 420,000 by the end of March. The two largest cellcos by customers and revenues, Vodacom and MTN, currently claim 360,000 and 120,000 3G/HSDPA datacard users respectively. Of the remainder, iBurst accounts for 60,000 subscribers via its BFWA/WiMAX networks, and a further 45,000 broadband customers are served by other wireless ISPs around the country.

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:49:06 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Regulator Anacom has published fixed line market statistics for the fourth quarter of 2007. Portugal Telecom’s market share of ‘accesses installed at customer request’ fell to 71.9% from 78.1% at the start of the year as it continued to lose out to alternative operators, most notably Sonaecom-backed Novis, which boosted its share from 9% to 14.4% following the acquisition of the residential and SoHo business of Oni Telecom. Among the fastest growing fixed line operators is Vodafone, having tripled its market share from 0.4% to 1.2% in just twelve months.

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:48:13 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

India's Telecoms Regulatory Authority (TRAI) has reported that a total of 8.49 million telephone connections have been added during February 2008 as compared to 8.74 million connections added in January 2008. The total number of telephone connections reaches 290.11 million at the end of February 2008 as compared to 281.62 million in January 2008. The overall tele-density is 25.31% at the end of February 2008 as against 24.63% in January 2008.

In the wireless segment, 8.53 million subscribers have been added in the month of February 2008 as against 8.77 million subscribers added in the month of January 2008. The total wireless subscribers (GSM, CDMA & WLL(F)) base stood at 250.93 million at the end of February 2008.

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Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:45:04 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

APA-Accra (Ghana) Ghana's parliament on Wednesday passed a controversial bill that will see mobile phone users pay a tax of one US cent for every minute they call.

The bill, introduced by the ruling New Patriotic Party, was described by a section of Ghanaians as obnoxious and calculated to stifle their ability to communicate freely.

The government explained to parliament that the implementation of the bill will enable it generate more revenue for development and also sustain the National Youth Employment Programme, which is near collapse as a result of inadequate funding.

However, the minority in parliament led by the National Democratic Congress party opposed the bill, saying that not all people in the country used mobile phones and the implementation would mean preventing people from talking more on mobile phones.

Parliament has tasked Ghana's National Communication Authority to ensure that mobile phone operators comply with the new legislation.

Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:43:00 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The European Commission hopes to lift average broadband penetration in the European Union to 30% by 2010, up from around 20% today, in a bid to stimulate economic growth. The EC’s Information Society Commissioner Viviane Reding said yesterday that only eight of the bloc's 27 member states were currently beating the US in terms of broadband usage, while the average penetration rate lagged behind the 22.1% figure reported in the United States. Although a number of nations, such as Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands and Sweden have rates closer to 30%, Reding wants to see a significant improvement across the board within the next two years. The Commissioner believes that her new telecoms reforms, currently before the European Parliament and EU states for approval, will help the trading bloc reach this 30% target. Reding hopes the reform bill will be adopted by April 2009 ahead of planned European elections in June.

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:41:46 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

KARACHI -(Dow Jones)- Foreign investment in Pakistan's telecom sector witnessed a 7.2% growth on year in the first six months of the current financial year that began July 1, government data issued Wednesday showed.

During the July-December period, foreigners invested $1.314 billion in the country's telecom sector compared with $1.225 billion during the same period last year, Islamabad-based Pakistan Telecommunication Authority said in a report.

During the last four years, the telecom sector has attracted over $5 billion as foreign direct investment, the report said.

Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:40:32 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Research firm, IDC says that the telecommunications data services market in emerging Asian countries (defined as Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Vietnam) is projected to collectively grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 36% from 2007-2011. The data segment, which includes mobile data services, fixed line corporate data and Internet access services, grew strongly at 258% year-on-year in 2006, reaching US$952 million.

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The mobile data segment from the four countries is anticipated to escalate at 41% CAGR from 2007-2011, driven by expected growth in SMS usage. As more high-speed networks become available, other data revenue, apart from SMS, will rise in significance in the coming years.

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Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:37:01 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

A third GSM network operator has launched was Albania last week. Eagle Mobile, a joint venture between Turkish Calik Holding, Turkish Telecom and the Albanian State has launched with coverage in Tirana and Durres cities, the territory between and country's the only International Airport.

The company says that it now covers about half the country's population, using infrastructure supplied by Huawei and Amdocs.

93 percent of the employees of Eagle Mobile are Albanian, and the company plans to create a field of activity for more then 1000 Albanian people.

The country currently has two mobile operators, Vodafone and AMC. According to figures from the Mobile World, the country ended last September with some 2.2 million subscribers, representing a population penetration level of 61%

Albania is a parliamentary democracy that is transforming its economy into a market-oriented system. The Albanian capital, Tirana, is home to 750,000 of the country's 3.6 million population. As a result of the opening of the country in the post-communist era, Albania is now undergoing a development boom as its telecommunications, transport and utilities infrastructure is being revamped.

Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:32:39 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Earlier today, figures released by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) point to that country becoming the second largest wireless market in the world by the end of April.

More than 8.5 million wireless subscribers were added in February, compared with 8.77 million subs who cut the cord in January. The total wireless subscriber base (GSM, CDMA & WLL[F]) stood at 250.93 million at the end of February.

Currently, China is the world's largest wireless network, and it's adding between 6 million and 7 million subscribers every month. According to CTIA-The Wireless Association, the current U.S. wireless subscriber base is 256 million. The United States is adding between 2 million and 3 million subscribers in a month, while India's monthly wireless subscriber addition is highest, in the range of between 8 million and 9 million a month, TRAI says.

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Source: Telecom Web.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:30:53 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The number of mobile connections in Pakistan squeezed past the 80m barrier in February, reaching 80.001m at the end of the month. In Issue 105 of The Mobile World Briefing, we remarked that growth seemed to be slowing in Pakistan and the latest result confirms this impression: the figure for monthly net additions (1.26m) was the lowest since November 2005.

February 2008's figure was almost half that of February 2007, when there were 2.20m new connections. Moreover, February represented the second consecutive month with fewer than 2m new connections, the first such occurrence in two years.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008 4:28:09 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, March 20, 2008

Greek alternative fixed line and broadband operator ForthNet’s full year 2007 net losses widened to EUR32.5 million (USD60.0 million) from EUR16.7 million in 2006, on increased costs of local loop unbundling (LLU) and subscriber acquisition. Annual revenues grew 21.7% year-on-year to EUR119 million, as broadband subscribers doubled in twelve months to reach approximately 200,000 at the end of December (and subsequently reached 210,000 at the end of February 2008). LBITDA widened from EUR5 million in 2006 to EUR20 million last year, but the company expects to start posting gains in the second half of 2008 on improved operating performance and a new LLU subscriber acquisition cost accounting method. ForthNet’s CAPEX reached EUR64.3 million in 2007, up from EUR36 million the previous year. As of February 2008 it claimed to be Greece’s market leader for LLU customers with a 35% market share.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 4:37:49 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

T-Home, the fixed line division of German incumbent Deutsche Telekom (DT), is forecasting a drop in revenues of between 4% and 6% during 2008, and a decline in EBITDA of 5% to 8%, according to T-Home CEO Timotheus Hoettges. Results for the full year 2007, published last month, showed falls of 8% in revenue and 14% in EBITDA. Hoettges said that the current decline should be stemmed by 2010, when increases in broadband customers will entirely offset losses in fixed line telephony. He added that cost savings of up to EUR1 billion (USD1.57 billion) are expected in the coming year, most of which will be used to attract new customers. The telco hopes to attract an additional 1.6 million DSL customers in Germany by the close of 2008. Hoetgess said that he expects that T-Home's revenue and EBITDA decreases will level out by 2010, when the fixed line losses have been entirely offset by increases in broadband customers and revenues.

Click here to see full article

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 4:35:23 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

According to Colombia’s telecoms regulator the CRT, the country ended last year with 1.2 million broadband internet subscribers, up 27.9% year-on-year. ADSL technology represented 57.4% of total connections, followed by cable modem technology (35.5%) and WiMAX (4.4%). Dial-up connections totalled 174,383, down 12% compared to December 2006. According to the report, local operator ETB took 22.1% of the broadband market, followed by EPM Telecomunicaciones (Une) with 20% and Colombia Telecom with 16.7%.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 4:34:25 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The European Commission hopes to lift average broadband penetration in the European Union to 30% by 2010, up from around 20% today, in a bid to stimulate economic growth. The EC’s Information Society Commissioner Viviane Reding said yesterday that only eight of the bloc's 27 member states were currently beating the US in terms of broadband usage, while the average penetration rate lagged behind the 22.1% figure reported in the United States. Although a number of nations, such as Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands and Sweden have rates closer to 30%, Reding wants to see a significant improvement across the board within the next two years. The Commissioner believes that her new telecoms reforms, currently before the European Parliament and EU states for approval, will help the trading bloc reach this 30% target. Reding hopes the reform bill will be adopted by April 2009 ahead of planned European elections in June.

Source: TeleGeograpy.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 4:33:08 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Pan-African cellular operator MTN has reported a 42% jump in revenues for 2007 to ZAR73.1 billion (USD10.3 billion). Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased by 42% to ZAR31.8 billion, though increased finance charges and a higher tax charge saw net profits fall from ZAR12.1 billion in 2006 to ZAR11.9 billion last year. The MTN group recorded 61.4 million subscribers at 31 December 2007, a 53% increase from 40.2 million at end-December 2006. The total includes 14.8 million customers in its domestic market of South Africa and 16.5 million in Nigeria. Average revenues per user have declined across most of MTN’s operations following increases in lower usage pre-paid customer numbers.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 10:14:07 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

China Mobile has announced that its net profit rose 31.9% in 2007 to RMB87.06 billion (USD12.31 billion) on the back of strong subscriber growth and improved airtime usage. China's largest mobile operator said turnover in the twelve months ended 31 December 2007 grew 20.9% to RMB356.96 billion from RMB295.36 billion a year earlier. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 21.6% to RMB194 billion, while earnings per share rose 31% to RMB4.35.

Operationally, the world’s largest wireless network operator added 68.11 million net new subscribers during the year to take its total to 369.34 million. Monthly average minutes of use per customer was 455 minutes, up from an average of 381 in 2006, while monthly ARPU was steady at RMB89.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 10:13:14 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The Netherlands was home to 2.53 million consumer VoIP subscribers at the end of 2007, up 7.3% on the previous quarter, reports telecompaper. The online portal says the rise was driven by increased take-up of DSL VoIP and continued demand for cable VoIP alternatives. The total Dutch consumer telephony market stood at 5.69 million connections by the start of this year, up 22,000 lines year-on-year, despite a 27.5% drop in traditional PSTN/ISDN lines to 2.847 million by the end of last year. Telecompaper estimates KPN’s share of the digital telephony market climbed to 33.5% by 31 December 2007, thanks to the launch of DSL and voice telephony services under the Telfort banner – which is targeting the entry-level user segment. In Q4 2007 the former monopoly added 61,000 new customers (up 7.8% on Q3 2007), while second-placed IP telephony provider Zesko (@Home, Casema and Multikabel) recorded 54,000 net new additions in the fourth quarter to end the year with 710,000 VoIP users. UPC Nederland was the third largest VoIP provider by subscribers with 489,200 customers.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 10:12:12 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The number of residential broadband connections in Argentina reached 2.1 million at the end of 2007, up 53.6% from 1.4 million a year earlier, reports BNamericas quoting government statistics bureau Indec. The total number of residential internet connections, including dial-up, totalled 2.9 million at 31 December 2007, up 16.5% from 2.5 million at the end of 2006. Meanwhile, corporate internet accesses rose 18.8% in 2007 to reach 275,717 connections at the year end. Of these, 211,789 were broadband (up 34.3%) and 40,310 were dial-up (down 25.6%).

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 10:10:51 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

BNamericas, citing a report from the regulator Conatel, reports that the number of wireless subscribers in Venezuela at the end of 2007 stood at 23.8 million, up from 18.8 million twelve months previously. Mobile penetration correspondingly jumped from 68.9% to 86.8%. CANTV unit Movilnet remained the largest operator by subscribers, with a 39.9% market share at the end of the fourth quarter, down from 40.7% quarter-on-quarter. In second place was Telefonica-owned Movistar with 39.6%, down from 40.5%, while the third largest cellco, Digitel, boosted its share of the market to 20.5% from 18.8%. In the fixed telephony segment the country ended 2007 with 5.1million subscribers – giving a penetration rate of 18.5% – compared with 4.2 million twelve months before. Broadband connections meanwhile totalled 858,000 at the end of 2007 compared with 759,856 at end-2006.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 10:09:43 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The number of active mobile phone lines in Brazil reached 124.1 million by 29 February 2008, up 1.02% on the previous month, and 22.7% higher than the figure recorded at the end of February 2007. According to preliminary data published by the regulator Anatel, more than 1.26 million cell phones were added in February this year.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 10:07:56 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Boris Piedra, general manager of Etapa Telecom, has told BNamericas that his company forecasts revenues of USD3.3 million in 2008 and more than USD4 million in 2009, up from the USD2.5 million level recorded in 2007. Etapa Telecom has recently inked an agreement with Huawei for the deployment of a next generation network (NGN). Piedra said that the company's nationwide expansion programme requires a total investment of USD20 million. According to BNamericas, in the voice segment Etapa Telecom currently provides fixed services via rented infrastructure to approximately 1,000 subscribers in Cuenca and Guayaquil. Piedra stated that the company is targeting 5,000 voice telephony subscribers by the end of 2008 and 15,000 clients by end-2009. Etapa Telecom is fully controlled by Cuenca's municipally owned multi-utility Etapa.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 20, 2008 10:07:03 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, March 19, 2008

SAO PAULO -(Dow Jones)- The number of cellphones in circulation in Brazil totaled 124.1 million at the end of February, up 1% from January and 22.7% higher than the same month one year before, according to preliminary figures released late Monday by telecommunications regulator Anatel.

"In our view, the strong growth we've seen so far in 2008 is due at least in part to the practice of selling multiple subscriber identity module, or SIM, cards per subscriber, which artificially inflates the number of wireless subscribers and net additions," Morgan Stanley said in a research report. "As a result, we believe revenues and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or Ebitda, growth will not follow subscriber growth," it added.

Brazil's main operator are Vivo Participacoes, which is jointly owned by Spain's Telefonica and Portugal Telecom; TIM Participacoes, the local unit of Telecom Italia and Claro, the local unit of Mexico's America Movil.

Source: Cellular News.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008 11:20:12 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Kuwait’s National Mobile Telecommunications Co (Wataniya) has reported a 51.5% rise in profit for 2007 at KWD80.7 million (USD282.6 million) on revenues of KWD407.6 million, up 26% year-on-year. The firm, which is a subsidiary of Qatar Telecom, is predicting further rises in profits and revenues in 2008. 52% of sales came from Wataniya’s domestic market in 2007, with the remainder from its operations in Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Algeria and the Maldives. Wataniya had 9.54 million subscribers across its mobile operations at the end of December.

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008 4:29:34 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Indonesian fixed wireless service provider Bakrie Telecom ended 2007 with 3.82 million subscribers, up 147% from 1.55 million a year earlier, reports Antara News. The gains helped drive a 112% rise in revenue to IDR1.29 trillion (USD140.7 million), up from IDR607.07 billion the previous year. Net income soared 98% from IDR71.7 billion to IDR144.3 billion as Bakrie expanded its network service to 17 more cities, bringing the number of cities it covers to 34. It hopes to have signed up 14 million customers by 2011 and plans to deploy a further 1,000 base transceiver stations this year alone. The operator has set aside 63% of this year’s allocated CAPEX of USD232 million on network expansion and says it will spend approximately USD600 million until 2010 on improving its networks and services.

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008 4:28:35 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

China has surged past the United States in its total number of Internet users, knocking America off the Number One pole position it's held for nearly 40 years.

According to a new report released by Chinese research house BDA, because of the disparate size of the two countries' populations, the United States is unlikely to ever catch up.

China's online population passed 228 million as of the end of last month, BDA estimates; to come up with that number, BDA cites figures from the China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) saying that, at the end of last year, there were 210 million Chinese Internet users. That represents an increase of 73 million (53.3 percent) compared with usage at the end of 2006. In comparison, BDA points to Nielsen/NetRatings estimates that put the U.S. Internet population at 216 million at the end of 2007 and growing at a far slower pace.

Click here to see full article

Source: TelecomWeb.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008 4:23:10 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, March 17, 2008

Viet Nam News, a national English daily, has revealed Viettel has slashed off-peak call charges by 75% as it seeks to ignite demand and attract more users. The military-run cellco said the new charges were down to VND500 (USD0.03) a minute for calls between Viettel subscribers and VND1,000 for calls to other networks – the lowest rates in a highly competitive market. Managing director Tong Viet Trung said that the company was able to make such drastic price cuts because its network and services were running at optimal levels, enabling them to reduce operating costs. ‘We hope promotion will increase the number of Viettel subscribers from 15 million to 22 million by year end,’ he added. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database Viettel is the country’s largest wireless operator by subscribers. It plans to install an additional 4,000 base transmission stations in 2008, bringing the total number to 10,000.

Source: TeleGeography.

Monday, March 17, 2008 2:29:56 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Indonesia’s leading telecoms operator by subscribers and revenues PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia (Telkom) says the number of people signed up to its fixed wireless access (FWA) service ‘Flexi’ will climb to ten million users this year, up from 6.4 million at the end of 2007, leapfrogging its traditional copper-wire based service which had 8.7 million users at the same date. Telkom’s fixed line subscriber base has been climbing relatively slowly for a number of years, and is now being overtaken by wireless alternatives which are cheaper and quicker to deploy. The incumbent also owns a 65% stake in Indonesia's biggest cellular operator by subscribers Telkomsel, which had 47.9 million clients at the end of 2007, up 35% year-on-year.

The limited mobility Flexi service has become increasingly popular on the back of a number of high-profile marketing initiatives, said Telkom vice president for public and marketing communication, Eddy Kurnia, as quoted by Thomson Financial. The operator’s latest offer, ‘5 Get 5’, targets users in Sumatra, Central Java and Yogyakarta, Kalimantan and East Indonesia, allowing them to send a minimum of five SMS and get a bonus of five for free.

Source: TeleGeography.

Monday, March 17, 2008 9:59:22 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, March 14, 2008

The Asia-Pacific mobile video services market is expected to see huge growth potential as mobile operators continue to spend millions on developing innovative services and content to arrest the declining average revenue per user (ARPU). Mobile TV, essentially an extension of mobile video services, in particular is seen as a new killer application that could potentially bring alternative source of revenues for carriers.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan finds that the mobile video services market - covering 12 Asia-Pacific countries ex-Japan - earned revenues of over US$440 million in 2007 and estimates this to reach US$1.88 billion by end-2013, at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 27.4 percent (2007-2013).

While South Korea (which accounted for 87 percent or US$383.7 million of the revenues in 2007) will remain as the biggest market for mobile video in Asia-Pacific (outside of Japan), other potential leading markets include Singapore, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Friday, March 14, 2008 12:50:31 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, March 13, 2008

Ecuador’s total number of internet users increased by 22.5% in 2007 to end the year at 1.01 million, including 318,973 broadband and 689,436 dial-up users, according to data from the country’s telecoms supervisory body Suptel, quoted by BNamericas. In terms of actual subscribers, Suptel previously reported that there were 85,946 broadband and 224,999 dial-up customers at the end of September 2007, a total of 310,945 paid subscriptions. According to TeleGeography's GlobalComms database, the country's broadband penetration at the end of September was 0.6%, rising to an estimated 0.7% at end-2007. GlobalComms shows that Ecuador’s broadband subscriber market is led by the TVCable group, which includes Suratel and Setel, with 44,029 connections by end-September, using various technologies including cable, DSL, WiMAX and fibre/LAN. The second-placed high speed ISP is Andinatel, the country’s largest wireline telco, which operates a DSL network in Quito and surrounding areas, with 16,054 subscribers at the same date.

Suptel also reported that the country’s fixed lines in service grew by 3.4% in 2007 to 1.83 million, whilst it said there were 9.85 million mobile phone subscribers at the end of December, up by 16.2% from end-2006.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 13, 2008 3:12:21 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

In 2004, there were only 520 square miles of networked municipal Wi-Fi. However, ABI Research forecasts a nearly sixty-fold increase over the next several years, to more than 30,000 square miles. Varying levels of maturity and acceptance exist within this market, spread across global regions and individual countries. The following is a snapshot of some major variations, according to recent analysis from ABI Research:

  • North America: Leads in deployments; but in many cases, the region employs the wrong business plan of free consumer access and free infrastructure; consolidating incumbent service providers view municipal Wi-Fi as a competitive threat.
  • Europe: Mobile-oriented rather than PC-oriented; incumbents initially resisted municipal Wi-Fi but now recognize in-building limitations and are incorporating it within service bundles for nomadic broadband Internet access, or as a way to compete out-of-region.
  • Asia-Pacific: Status varies widely, but rapid uptake in advanced countries such as South Korea is resulting in innovative applications and the development of new end-user devices to leverage municipal Wi-Fi.
  • Emerging Regions: Equipment costs remains prohibitive; there is interest in the technology, but compared with more basic services such as electricity, funding is a challenge; these regions are likely to be late adopters.
Click here to see full article

Source: Newsletter Analyst Insider from ABI Research.

Thursday, March 13, 2008 10:27:17 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

A new report from Juniper Research has found that the combination of greater 3G adoption and a marked increase in rich media, made-for-mobile content will drive mobile entertainment revenues to $47.5 billion by 2010.

However, the Juniper report cautions that entertainment service adoption will be retarded unless improvements are made in areas such as the user interface, network coverage and the excessive cost of data services. It also notes that in some mobile areas -- such as gambling, adult content and some social networking services -- national and international legislation could either adversely impact on growth, or in some cases prevent any service deployment.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

3G | Mobile | Revenues
Thursday, March 13, 2008 10:21:22 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Israeli telco Bezeq has announced results for the year ended 31 December 2007. Revenue for the twelve month period rose 1.4% to ILS12.4 billion (USD3.5 billion) from ILS12.2 billion recorded in 2006. Operating profits jumped 49.3% to ILS2.3 billion, while EBITDA increased by 19.7% to ILS4.1 billion, with EBITDA margin increasing to 33.1% from 28%. Bezeq’s operating areas had mixed results; wireless subsidiary Pelephone and international services provider Bezeq International saw increases in revenues of 4.6% and 27.7% respectively to ILS4.7 billion and ILS1.3 billion. By contrast Bezeq’s fixed line operations saw revenues slip 1.5% to ILS5.7 billion, falling from ILS5.8 billion the year before. Net profits – not given in the case of the fixed line operations – increased for Bezeq International (up 59.4%) and Pelephone (up 20.4%) to ILS153 million and ILS585 million. Bezeq states that the increases in revenue for 2007 were driven by rising demand for broadband and cellular services, as well as an increase in subscriber numbers following several marketing initiatives, and a focus on operating efficiency.

Operationally; Pelephone’s wireless subscriber base rose 8% to 2.6 million of which 749,000 (28%) were connected to its 3G network. Wireline broadband customers rose by 8% to 963,000, although active fixed lines fell by 1.7% to 2.7 million.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 13, 2008 10:19:19 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

A study commissioned by US equipment vendor Cisco and carried out by IDC concluded that Brazil was home to 8.1 million broadband connections at the end of 2007, up from 5.7 million at end-2006 and more than double the 3.752 million figure reported in December 2005. The main broadband players in the country at the end of last year were Brasil Telecom with 1.567 million customers, Telemar's Oi unit (1.518 million), Telefonica Brazil (2.069 million) and Net Servicos (estimated at 1.38 million).

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, March 13, 2008 10:17:58 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Orange France announced yesterday the launch of a 3.5G HSDPA-based service for corporate customers in Lyon. The new product promises to double downlink connection speeds for users from 3.6Mbps up to a maximum 7.2Mbps. The company says deployment of faster HSDPA in other major towns and cities across France should be underway by the summer. The operator is hoping to reach 71% of the population with 3.5G coverage by the end of 2008. It also says it is looking to achieve 99% population coverage with EDGE and to have deployed 30,000 Orange Wi-Fi hotspots. Orange is offering the new package as part of its Business Everywhere solutions. It is launching with three mobile handsets compatible with 3G+ (HSDPA at 7.2Mbps and HSUPA) which can also be adapted to laptop computers using USB key (Huawei E270), PCMCIA Card (Option GX 301) and PC Express Card (Huawei E870).

Source: TeleGeography.

3G | Europe | Mobile
Thursday, March 13, 2008 10:16:47 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |