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 Wednesday, 10 December 2008

­Mobile internet has undeniably turned a corner in 2008, showing unprecedented growth levels. By 2012 a nine-fold increase in mobile broadband revenues is expected. However, driven by peer to peer and video services, traffic levels are expected to grow much faster to well over 20 times todayís volumes. These numbers are a wake-up call to mobile broadband providers. Clearly demand is there, but is there also a sustaina­ble business case?

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Source: Cellular News.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008 11:32:37 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

President-elect Barack Obama pledged to expand Americans' access to broadband Internet as part of a massive new public works program designed to generate jobs and improve the economy, he said in his weekly video/radio address.

"As we renew our schools and highways, we'll also renew our information superhighway," Obama said. "It is unacceptable that the United States ranks 15th in the world in broadband adoption. Here, in the country that invented the Internet, every child should have the chance to get online, and they'll get that chance when I'm President ó because that's how we'll strengthen America's competitiveness in the world."

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Source: Cellular News.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008 11:30:47 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

­Zimbabwe's telecoms regulator, POTRAZ has granted 3G licenses to the incumbent mobile operators - without any evident tender for the licenses. The mobile operators will also be allowed to offer Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services.

ďThe amendment of licences will enable operators to offer new services which are covered by the current legislation, but restricted by their current licence documentsĒ, the regulator said in a statement.

At the beginning of the year, Econet Wireless said that it had completed the installation of 3G base stations on its network, but was unable to switch on the service as the regulator has failed to release the required radio spectrum. The company has originally made an application for a 3G license in June 2007.

Econet Wireless is the largest operator in the country by subscriber numbers. According to estimates from the Mobile World, the operator ended last September with 977,000 customers and a market share of 64%. The country has a population penetration level of just over 12%.

Source: Cellular News.

3G | Africa
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 11:26:59 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

One possible scenario for the telecoms industry during the current economic slowdown is that fixed-to-mobile substitution (FMS) will be accelerated as consumers reduce their communications bill by cutting their fixed line in favour of mobile services. With mobile broadband deals now more readily available and affordable, there is a potential Ďdouble whammyí to this in that fixed line operators could not only lose further fixed voice revenues but valuable broadband revenues as well. Ovum therefore commissioned a survey of over 8,000 consumers to find out their plans.

The majority of consumers will scale down rather than cancel their broadband service

At the top level broadband seems to remain a Ďstickyí service. Ovumís survey data shows that only 7% of respondents would ditch their fixed line for both voice and broadband in favour of mobile services, and only 1% said they would be prepared to keep their fixed voice but cut their broadband access. Cutting the mobile subscription stood at 6%, making fixed broadband access actually even Ďstickierí than mobile to those that are planning on keeping the fixed telephony line.

The majority of respondents, 65%, said they would simply look to reduce spend in certain areas, rather than cancelling one of their services altogether. At the top level, how they reduce that spend was fairly evenly split across reducing fixed voice calls, mobile voice calls and pay-TV subscriptions.

Unfortunately for pay-TV operators, more consumers look to be planning to cut back on extras such as pay-per-view movies, rather than increase spend in this area with the idea of saving on other social activities. Ovum suspects that this will be more related to movie rental subscriptions, rather than true pay-per-view, which we still suspect will see an increase as consumers go out less.

Age and culture play a big part in broadband decisions

Unsurprisingly, the decisions around whether to reduce spend on fixed and mobile communications differ with age group. People aged between 16 and 25 are more likely to either drop their fixed line altogether (10% of 16- to 25-year-olds) or keep a fixed connection but rely more on their mobile phone for calls (28% of 16- to 25-year-olds) than any other age group. As the users get older they are less likely to rely on their mobile and more likely revert back to their fixed line, with only 5% of over 55s saying they would cut their fixed line. Keeping both mobile and fixed voice services but cutting broadband access is not a popular option across all age groups. Countries with a younger population will therefore see different trends to those with an older population.

As well as age, culture also plays its part. Ovumís data clearly shows that there are significant differences in countries where mobile services and applications are already firmly engrained into the culture, such as Korea. In Korea 15% of respondents would cut their fixed line altogether, compared to roughly 5% in most Western European countries Ė other than Italy, where 11% said they would. Conversely, in Germany and France 11% of respondents said they would rather keep their fixed line and cut their mobile service. In part this will be related to age demographics, but cultural differences also play a large part.

Broadband is now a part of everyday life

There will always be differences between the various social segments and cultures. However, what is common across the world is that broadband Internet access is becoming an essential part of everyday life. It has become part of how people communicate, book their holidays, search for work, find out news, purchase goods and educate their children. When money becomes tight consumers obviously look for ways to save money, but for the vast majority of people cutting out their access to the Internet and associated services and applications is just not an option.

The more mobile segments of the community will favour pure mobile solutions, and as the technology improves this segment will gradually grow. However, the economic slowdown will not see a mass defection away from fixed broadband. Having said this, operators can expect to see an overall reduction in ARPU as consumers look to trim their overall communication bills where possible, and this goes for mobile as well as fixed operators.

Source: Cellular News.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008 09:41:02 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Brazilís mobile phone production has been augmented after the launch of 3G technology. It is anticipated that mobile phone production will reach the mark of 76 million units in 2008, 12% rise on 2007 figures. An internal market has consumed 40 million units, an increase of 11 percent on last year. After experiencing fall in sales for two years, mobile phone exports has grown to 13%. According to the association, 3G technology, which is still in the implementation phase, should sustain demand for investments in infrastructure and new devices in 2009.

Source: Wireless Federation.

3G | Americas
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 09:38:51 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Spain, at October end, has totalled the number of mobile phone lines to 50.59 million, adding 249,913 new mobile lines in October, up by 4.6% sunce 2007. According to a monthly report by Spanish telecoms regulator CMT, Vodafone has acquired 29.2% of the total net addition in October, whereas Orange grabbed 25.5%, then came Yoigo which accounted for 19.2% and Movistar accounted for 14.3% and MVNOs grabbed the remaining 1.9%. Mobile penetration reached 111.9 lines per 100 inhabitants in comparison to 107.0 in October 2007.

Spain added 181,034 postpaid subscribers and around 61,879 prepaid subscribers in October. Some 338,361 mobile phone numbers were ported in October, up by 5.9% versus since 2007. Yoigo saw a positive result by seeing a portability of 7,459 subscribers whereas Vodafone, Movistar and Orange registered a negative result.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008 09:37:22 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, 09 December 2008

The Spanish incumbent Movistar launches 3G services on Panama. The network infrastructure was provided by Nokia Seimens Networks to Movistar. The initial coverage will be limited to Tocumen, located northeast of Panama City, and will then reach to the capital. The company will offer to postpaid subscribers broadband plans ranging from US$29.95/month with a 1Gb download limit to US$49.95 with a 5Gb download limit. 3G for prepaid Movistar subscribers will be launched in next few week.

Source: Wireless Federation.

3G | Americas
Tuesday, 09 December 2008 10:45:19 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Acccording to National Statistics Office, Malta, the countryís mobile subscriber base reached 381,955 at September end. Out of the total subscriber base 48,507 accounted for contract-based mobile subscriptions and 333,448 card-plan subscriptions.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 09 December 2008 10:44:27 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Mobinil celebrates its 20 millionth customer and consolidates its leadership position on the Egyptian telecommunications market

Ten years after the launch of commercial activities, Mobinil celebrated yesterday in Cairo its 20 millionth customer in the presence of Olaf Swantee, Senior Executive Vice President, Personal Communication Services, UK, Europe and the Middle East for France Telecom-Orange, and Naguib Sawiris, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Orascom Telecom. Mobinil, which had 15 million customers at the end of 2007, increased its customer base by almost 5 million people in less than one year, a progression of around 35%. This commercial success allows Mobinil, in which France Telecom has a majority stake, to consolidate its leadership position on the Egyptian mobile telecommunications market with approximately 52% of market share.

This performance is essentially due to the high quality of service provided by Mobinil and its capacity to deliver innovative offers. The launch of a new 3G network last September, for example, has provided Egyptians with access to high-speed mobile Internet.

Click here to see full article

The Orange Foundation also participates in a scholarships programme for girls living in poor districts of Cairo.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 09 December 2008 10:43:22 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

­Mexico is set to join the increasing number of countries which require mandatory registration for all mobile phone users, after the lower house of Congress approved a bill to create a national database of subscriber details.

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Under the plans in the bill, all mobile phone users will be required to submit a proof of address and their fingerprints to the mobile operators.

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According to statistics from the Mobile World analysts, the country ended the first half of this year with 73.45 million mobile phone users. Approximately 95% of the market is prepay - requiring a considerable registration effort by the mobile operators.

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Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, 09 December 2008 10:35:29 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

­APA-Kigali (Rwanda) Rwandaís oldest telecommunication operator, Rwandatel, Friday launched the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) and 3G network for its mobile telephone, replacing its CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) platform, as it prepares for a cut-throat competition with MTN Rwanda, its main challenger.

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Source: Cellular News.

3G | Africa
Tuesday, 09 December 2008 10:30:04 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

­Spain's telecoms regulator, the CMT has reported that mobile number portability has remained roughly stable at around 300,000 per month, with 338,361 numbers ported in the month of October. This is a 5.9% rise on the same month a yeat ago.

The fourth network operator, Yoigo, and MVNOs gained 7,459 and 8,539 lines respectively - while Vodafone, Movistar and Orange all saw a net outflow of subscribers through MNP.

Vodafone took an average of 29.2% of the gain lines of the past three months, Orange, 25.5%; Yoigo, 19.2%; Movistar, from 14.3% and finally the MVNOs, the remaining 11.9%. The country added a gross amount of 242,913 lines in October.

The regulator also reported that there are now 1.44 million machine-to-machine connections in the country.

On the web: CMT

Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, 09 December 2008 10:26:27 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, 05 December 2008

AT&T Inc. joined the recession's parade of layoffs Thursday by announcing plans to cut 12,000 jobs, about 4 percent of its work force.

The Dallas-based telecommunications company ó the nation's largest ó said the job cuts will take place in December and throughout 2009. The company also plans to reduce capital spending next year.

Spokesman Walt Sharp said the layoffs will be "across the company and across the country," but would not specify what departments and cities would be most affected. These layoffs come on top of 4,600 jobs the company said in April it would eliminate.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Friday, 05 December 2008 16:40:54 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

­Pelephone is the third largest of Israelís four networks, but it was the fastest growing in Q3 08, both in real terms and proportionately. It added 62k customers in the quarter compared to 40k for market leader Cellcom and 36k for second-placed Partner, and its proportionate quarterly growth rate stood at 2.4% compared to 1.3% for both its rivals. At the end of the quarter its active customer base was just short of 2.70m. Nearest rival Partner had 2.88m, which means that its lead over Pelephone was below 200k for the first time in three years.

In fact, Pelephoneís figure for quarterly net additions equalled the Q4 07 figure, which was the best since Q3 05. This is particularly impressive given that the Israeli market is now around 130% penetrated. Despite this strong performance, and the narrowing of Partnerís lead, any changes in the market ranking remain unlikely in the near future. However, Pelephone does lead the market in terms of 3G customers. Its CDMA2000 1x EV-DO base broke the 1m barrier during the quarter to finish on 1.07m, more than 100k higher than the W-CDMA base of Partner. On an annual basis, Pelephoneís 3G base grew 64.1% with net additions of 418k, compared to 410k for the prior twelve-month period.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Friday, 05 December 2008 16:38:48 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Myanmar will soon experience, the price for owning a mobile phone being much less than using the device. The state-owned mobile operators in Myanmar plan to sell cheaper SIM cards with a tenfold rise in call tariffs. The sale of new SIM cards will begin from Dec. 12 priced at $50-25 times less than the price at present. The new SIM cards will carry a talktime of $10 and the calls will cost $0.30/min up from $0.03/min for otugoing domestic calls and the incoming call s will cost $0.05/min.

Under the current Myanmar system, a military rule, not everyone is entitled to an officially sanctioned mobile phone, which costs $1,250.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Friday, 05 December 2008 09:43:08 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Mexicoís telecoms sector has grown 24% in the third quarter of 2008, year-over-year, in terms of overall subscribers, boosted by gains in the fixed line telephony and pay TV segments, according to a report published by Cofetel. The telecommunication industry has posted a rise of 31.4% for the first three quarters. It adds 304,000 new fixed telephony lines and totals subscriber base to 20.4 million. The growth is attributed to number portability, introduced in Julyí08 and cable players as well.  In mobile telephony, the number of minutes of traffic grows to 35.9% year-on-year. The subscriber base reaches the mark of 73.1 million, grew 16.9% in comparison to 3Q07. The mobile penetration rate reaches 68.5%.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Friday, 05 December 2008 09:42:16 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Latin America, will reach the mark of 388 million mobile lines in service by the end of 2008, accounting for 9.6% of the overall mobile lines in service worldwide, according to a recent report. Brazil is anticipated to have 143.2 million phones, Mexico with 76.9 million and Argentina with 44.8 million lines by the end of this year. The entire population of only Uruguay and Chile is covered whereas in Ecuador and Colombia, the percentage reaches to 84. Bolivia has the lowest mobile coverage, reaching only 45.9% of the countryís population. Argentina has registered a higher mobile penetration than population coverage, with 102.2 mobile phones per 100 inhabitants. At the opposite pole, Peru, Mexico and Brazil exhibit the greatest gap between the population coverage and mobile penetration, the report reveals. Further the report exhibits that nearly seven out of ten countries in Latin America have over 48% prepaid users of the overall mobile lines in service.

In terms of Prepaid subscriptions, Venezuela tops the chart in Latin America with 95% of the total, subsequent to Bolivia with 94.6 percent, Mexico with 90.6 percent, while prepaid users in Peru, Colombia, Ecuador and Brazil account for over 80 % of the total subscription in each country.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Friday, 05 December 2008 09:41:19 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, 04 December 2008

Millions of UK mobile users donít understand international roaming charges Ė and go so far as to avoid making calls as a result. ­A new study, by market research firm, TNS indicates that it is confusion over service charges, in addition to the price of calls, which is preventing international roaming from really taking off.

A fifth of mobile users cite confusion over roaming pricing as their primary reason for using their phone less when abroad. Surprisingly this is especially true of younger consumers, where nearly a quarter (24%) of those aged 16-34 are still baffled by the costs of using their mobiles abroad.

The study also found that 17% of consumers would increase the amount of data services (like the mobile internet) they used if network providers offered them a fixed bundle package. Again this is truer of the 16 to 34 year olds, who are used to having bundled deals at home in the UK; 23% would use their phone more abroad if this type of deal were available. Similar findings were also seen in France where 14% of consumers said they would use their mobile more if they were offered a fixed bundle.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 14:47:04 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The slowing U.S. economy will likely speed up the ongoing shift to wireless-only phone service as consumers cut back on spending, analysts say.

Already the number of young adults and others who use only mobile phones and dump traditional landline service has been growing steadily. Studies put the number of wireless-only households near 15% heading into 2008, with the figure rising 2% to 3% a year.

The biggest wireless-only group, under-30 adults, tend to be big spenders on wireless and heavy users of text messaging. They like the convenience and mobility of wireless services.

The economic downturn adds a new factor to the decision to go all-wireless.

The big question is how many budget-conscious users might switch to wireless-only because of the economy, analysts say. Lower-income consumers, especially those without children at home, are most likely to cut the cord, analysts say.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 14:42:07 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Telecom Italia SpA will cut an additional 4,000 jobs by 2011 as it concentrates on core growth markets in Italy and Brazil to confront the deteriorating economic situation, CEO Franco Bernabe said Wednesday.

The 4,000 job cuts are in addition to 5,000 announced in June, and will reduce Telecom Italia's work force by 14 percent from 64,000 to 55,000. Bernabe said the number of managers will be cut in half as the company seeks to simplify its organization.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 14:39:41 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

As the total number of broadband lines in the world passes 400  million Point Topic forecasts that the total in the 40 biggest broadband countries in the world will grow from 393 million by the end of 2008 to 635 million by 2013. Broadband in the rest of the world will grow from 16 million to 48 million lines in the same period, so the world will add 273 million lines to reach 683 million in total.

Click here to see full article

Source: Point Topic.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 14:35:44 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The latest analysis from Point Topic on average tariffs and packages on offer for broadband worldwide gives a general story of increasing speed and decreasing prices

Over the quarter there is some variation, but if you look at 2008 as a whole consumers are getting more bandwidth for their money.

Of the three primary broadband technologies, DSL has seen the largest fall in average price for a subscription down from $66.75 in Q108 to $53.32 in Q3 taking a worldwide average. This is a 20% drop in the first 3 quarters of the year. In comparison average subscription prices for cable are down just over 12% and FTTx down by 6.5%.

Figure 1: Average monthly subscription (US$)

 NB: Fiber prices based on averages of available country implementations, DSL and cable taken from a wider base of regional averages

Click here to see full article

Source: Point Topic.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 14:18:56 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The CDMA Development Group (CDG) announced that subscribers to the CDMA family of technologies are at 475 million worldwide, continuing a growth trend toward half a billion subscribers fueled by rapid growth in both developed and emerging markets. The CDMA2000(r) subscriber base added 13 million users during the third quarter of 2008 to exceed 463 million, while CDMA2000 1xEV-DO grew by 5 million net subscribers to more than 105 million users.

Click here to see full article

CDMA operators worldwide added over 22 million EV-DO users from September 2007 to September 2008, representing a 27 percent annual increase. With more than 105 million subscribers, CDMA2000 1xEV-DO is the leading mobile broadband technology worldwide, with 124 operators in 62 countries offering high-speed CDMA services. 48 of these operators have deployed CDMA2000 1xEV-DO Rev. A networks to offer advanced mobile broadband services, and another 35 operators are in the process of deploying the industry-leading solution to receive the substantial revenue being generated by most current Rev. A operators. Europe, the Middle East and Africa saw an increase of almost 3 million EV-DO subscribers, a dramatic rise from less than 1 million subscribers a year ago. North American operators continued impressive gains with more than 15 million subscribers at a 36 percent growth rate, while Asia Pacific users increased by 12 percent.

Click here to see full article

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 14:02:03 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Number Portability in Brazil has extended to another 8.9mn fixed and mobile telephony users in three states in the country, reports Anatel. Telephony services users in the area code 82 in Alagoas state, area codes 12 and 13 in S„o Paulo state and code 83 in ParaŪba state can now port their numbers to other operators. According to telecoms standards coordinator ABR Telecom, Requests to port numbers in Brazil reaches 97,641 by November 27. Of the overall requests, 57,375 telephone numbers have already been ported - 34,168 mobile and 23,207 fixed.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:59:19 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Argentina, according to the national statistics bureau Indec, ended October with 45.4mn mobile lines in service, up 17.1% since 2007. The mobile telephony traffic rose to 3.50bn calls, a jump of 35.5% since Octí07.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:58:16 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

China has signed up 3.22 million new subscribers in October, less than the average monthly increase of 8.5 million recorded in the initial nine months to September, media reported. At the end of October, China had more than 627.26 million handset users. The slowdown is attributed to the change in operator for the countryís CDMA mobile network, from China Unicom to China Telecom. The total revenue was up 8.1% to CNY 679.79 billion in comparison to the year 2007. The total investment in the telecommunication sector has reached CNY 185.05 billion in the first ten months, up 9.9 percent year-on-year. The total number of telephone users, including both mobile phone users and fixed-line users has crossed the mark of 978.7 million by the end of October.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:57:15 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The German mobile telecom sector is valued at $6.44Bn in Q3ĀĆ08, a rise of 2% since Q2ĀĆ08 but a fall of 1.8% since Q3ĀĆ07. The revenue rise since Q2ĀĆ08 is driven by seasonal effects, while the year-on-year fall was due to cuts in mobile termination rates and roaming fees. Vodafone and T-Mobile, the two leading incumbents grabbed 70% of the total revenue market even after strong efforts by E-plus and O2. E-Plus is the only German operator to show a positive result in y-o-y market share, majorly in prepaid segment. The companyĀfs market share advanced 1.2% to 15.3% of revenues in the Q3ĀĆ08.Comparing the figures of Q3ĀĆ07, VodafoneĀfs market share dipped by 0.7% to 35.2%, while T-Mobile fell by 0.2% to 35.3%. O2 slid to fourth place, with its market share down by 0.1% to 14.3%.

The German mobile subscriber base rose by 2.6 million subscribers to a total of 106 million subscribers at Q3ĀĆ08 end. Market penetration jumped to 129.0% at September-end, from 113.4% the year before. T-Mobile and Vodafone ruled the market with 36.6% and 34.1% of the market respectively. Together, they lost 1.1% of the market to other operators, with E-Plus at no.3 with a market share of 16.1% and O2 at 13.2%.

Source: Wireless News.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:56:26 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Movistar Colombia, the local subsidiary of Spainís Telefonica has instigated 3.5G services in seven cities across the country. The seven cities are BogotŠ, MedellŪn, Cali, Barranquilla, Cartagena, Bucaramanga and Cķcuta. The service is accessible to both Prepaid and postpaid subscribers. Additionally, the operator offers videocall and mobile broadband. Movistar said it expects to gradually expand its 3G network to other cities across the country during 2009. The operator is currently offering four 3G-capable mobile devices, namely the Nokia N95, Blackberry Bold 9000, HTC Tytn II and iPhone 3G.

Source: Wireless Federation.

3G | Americas
Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:54:52 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Etisalat Nigeria launches a new mobile phone feature for its ĎEasy Starterí subscribers which will notify them of a missed call when the phone is out of coverage area or switched off. The service will be provided via SMS which will include the number trying to reach him along with the date and time. The package is activated by default and without charge. According to the telco, the feature will promote better business and personal relationships in Nigeria.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:54:05 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Digicel, the largest telecommunications operator in the Caribbean and recent entrant to the Central American market, today launched operations in Panama ó its third Central American market and 31st market world-wide ó with an investment of US$350 million. Digicel now offers seamless mobile telecommunication services across Central America, with operations to date in El Salvador, Honduras and Panama.

According to the Panama Ministry of Economy and Finance, the Panamanian economy is expected to grow 7.5 percent by 2009. With a population of 3.4 million, mobile penetration is currently at approximately 71 percent. Having built the most modern nationwide GSM network in the country, Digicel is well positioned to maximize growth by offering service for the first time to many communities in Panama not previously served by incumbent operators.

Click here to see full article

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:53:05 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Telkom Kenya, the new entrant to the Kenyan mobile market, has reportedly signed up 300,000 subscribers in the first three months of its launch. Telkom Kenya targets a subscriber base of 400000 by 2008-end, says CEO Dominique Saint-Jean. After launching it services in Nairobi and Mombasa, it further plans a coverage of five more towns by 2008-end.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:51:06 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Phone companies are praying their golden goose -- revenue growth from wireless data services -- doesn't turn into a dead duck during the recession.

U.S. phone companies garnered $8.8 billion in wireless data revenue in the quarter ended Sept. 30, up 7.3% from the previous quarter and 37.5% from the year-earlier period, says Chetan Sharma Consulting. Research firm SNL Kagan's most recent forecast, pre-economic crisis, called for wireless data revenue to rise at an average annual rate of 16% over the next decade. Wireless data revenue accounted for 20% of all wireless revenue in the first half of 2008, up from 10% two years ago, says industry trade group CTIA.

The rapid growth in data services has been fueled by a wave of smart phones. Wireless firms continue to expand the reach of their third generation, or 3G, networks, which provide for fast mobile data speeds.

Phone companies rely on wireless data growth to offset slowing subscriber growth and falling prices for calls. With the economy worsening and job losses mounting, consumers have cut back on spending.

For the big four wireless service providers -- AT&T T; Verizon Wireless, co-owned by Verizon Communications VZ and Vodafone VOD; Sprint Nextel S; and Deutsche Telekom's DT T-Mobile USA -- the big question is whether wireless data growth stays solid in the teeth of a recession.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:46:53 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Nigerian telecoms market looks forward to achieve a tele-density of 100% by 2020 driven by massive telephone and mobile communication improvements, calling for a huge growth in the ICT sector. Nigeria, till today as nearly 140 million people being serviced by 60 phone lines, a 45% success rate in a development wherein itíll boost the Nigerian economy and infrastructure. Internet installation is one of the most important technological advancement to be addressed. ďICTs are in fact enablers of broad based socio and economic development. ICTs not only contribute to the development of education, health and governance, but are also key enablers of sustainable human development in a more general sense. No modern economy can thrive without an integral information technology and telecommunications infrastructure. This is because ICTs provide the veritable platform for development across the economic and other sectors if well harnessed,Ē said vice chairman of Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC), Ernest Ndukwe. According to Ndukwe, if the goal is achieved, Nigeria would then have as many phone lines which can impressively improve the lives of the local people in as far as communication through telephone, cellphone and internet is concerned. Today the ratio stands at 1:1 implying that a Nigerian individual living in an urban centre owns three communication lines in the sense that at work and home an individual will be serviced by telephone lines and a mobile cellular phone, to make it three gadgets of communication.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:35:09 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

du, second largest operator of UAE has instigated a scheme called Ďdouble your talk timeí. Under this scheme any du subscribers who buy ďPay as you GoĒ line or renew his existing one for Dh55 gets double the amount back as free credit of up to Dh110. The subscribers can make use of this offer after recharges done in the form of Dh10 on every third recharge up to a maximum of Dh110, from the time of first call for new customers or renewal for existing customers.

Click here to see full article

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:32:30 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Thanks to its One Region One Rate roaming scheme, all du mobile subscribers can enjoy calling local numbers and receiving calls at just AED 1.25 per minute, while roaming in the GCC region.

The unified rates come into effect immediately without any extra charges and will be available by default to all du customers while they roam in the GCC region. du mobile customers can choose any telecom operator during roaming in the GCC while still benefitting from this attractive scheme.

Click here to see full article

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:29:13 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Virgin Mobile UK launches an all-you-can-eat internet access tariff at 30p per day, which is claimed to be a tariff three times cheaper in comparison to other offers by rival networks. The new rates will be levied from December 8 applying to both contract and pre-pay subscribers, Virgin reveals.

ďBy providing unlimited access at a highly competitive rate, we are giving all our customers the opportunity to use the internet on their phone without having to worry about racking up huge bills or working out complicated price structures,Ē said Virgin Mobile MD Graeme Oxby. However, the twist in the story lies that the 30p/day rate is counted as offering unlimited access, to which a daily fair use policy of 25MB applies. The subscribers exceeding this limit will have to pay £2 for each extra MB.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:26:37 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

South Koreaís leading wireless carrier, gained more customers than its rivals in November, maintaining its lead in the countryís telecom market, according to data released by mobile carriers.

SK Telecom reported that it attracted a net 51,768 customers last month, with its total subscription base increasing to 22.97 million.

KTF Co. ranked second, drawing in a net 35,175 users, bringing its customer base to 14.32 million. The smallest company, LG Telecom Ltd., attracted an additional 22,726 customers, with its total number of customers reaching 8.18 million.

Based on the figures, South Korea had 45.47 million mobile service users out of a population of 49 million as of the end of last month.

Users of KTFís 3G service, a third-generation wireless service that allows faster data transfers compared to second-generation CDMA-based services, reached 7.97 million as of the end of last month, followed by SK Telecomís 3G service with 7.88 million subscribers, according to reports.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:25:20 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The Lebanese government approves the reduction in mobile call fees to 10%/min along with other service fees. According to Information Minister Lebanon, Tareq Mitri, the Cabinet has approved the extension of mobile infrastructure and recommendations for improved services. He additionally said the Cabinet also gave a thumbs up to the recommendations by Telecoms Minister Jebran Bassil last week to end the existing management contract of cellco Alfa and let the communications ministry itself manage the Alfa network.
He further revealed a two month deadline for implementation of the following approvals by government.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:23:22 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The Bangladeshi telecoms watchdog intends to issue 3G licences in the country by Marchí09, in order to boost broadband services of the country. The licence will be roll out for 2100 MHz spectrum band for 3G services would enable Bangladeshi operators to launch mobile broadband services. ďThe 3G licences will be issued by March next year. The licences would be awarded through an open auction,Ē said the chairman of the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory commission, Manzurul Alam. The 3G services will allow people to get easy access to information on health, education, job opportunities and agriculture, he added.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Thursday, 04 December 2008 13:22:31 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, 02 December 2008

The new Arab Advisorsí survey of Jordan's Internet users also revealed that WiMAX operators had an 8.3% share of residential broadband Internet accounts in the country. Retail e-commerce in Jordan reached an estimated US$ 181 million the 12 months between November 2007 and November 2008.


Arab Advisorsí online survey revealed that of the respondents who have an ADSL subscription at home, 13.3% share it with neighbors. 28% of those sharing share the ADSL connection with two more households, 22.7% with three additional households and 29.3% with one additional household.

Click here to see full article

Source: Arab Advisors Group.



Tuesday, 02 December 2008 16:53:40 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

A new report from Arab Advisors Group analyzes and ranks 30 fixed services operators and 50 cellular operators in nineteen Arab countries. STCís Al Jawwal, Egyptís Mobinil and Vodafone Egypt are the largest Arab cellular operators in terms of subscribers.


With the advent of new operators and increased competition in 2008, cellular subscribers in 19 examined Arab countries reached 194.533 million. ALJAWAL and MobiNil sustained their top rankings by H1 2008, with 17.800 million and 16.328 million subscribers respectively. Vodafone Egypt ended the first six months of 2008 with 15.202 million subscribers, settling as the third largest mobile operator in the region. UAE recorded the highest cellular penetration rate by H1 2008, which stood at 198.6% followed by Saudi Arabia (123.3%). Both countries report subscribers based on active on the switch method. UAE also had the highest fixed line penetration rate by H1 2008, which stood at 29.4%.

Click here to see full article

Source: Arab Advisors Group.

Tuesday, 02 December 2008 16:46:47 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Africaís largest mobile phone company, MTN Group Ltd, is planning to bring handsets with MTNís brand costing as little as $12 in the first half of next year. MTNís Vice President of southern and east African region, Tim Lowry, said the handsets would be manufactured in China and may be priced between $12 and $15.

However, MTN lacks infrastructure such as base stations and switches and prices in a move to expand mobile and data services on the African Continent. In Africa, average mobile penetration is assessed to be 25%.

Lowry further said, MTN distributed 100,000 handsets costing about $20 into countries it operated in, including South Africa and Zambia, in a test this year. ďThey went into the system and just disappeared,Ē he said. ďWe couldnít keep up, they were selling like hot cakes.Ē MTN will target markets of Zambia, Ghana, Rwanda and South Africa with the low-priced handsets, carrying the MTN brand. The handsets are capable of handling data and voice. It is anticipated that average mobile penetration will rise to 50% in the next three or four years. MTN is working with mobile-phone companies to bring down prices for handsets that can handle data, voice and multimedia services to between $30 and $40, Lowry added.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 02 December 2008 11:08:17 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Velcom posts its third quarter results. The subscriber base reaches to 3.5 million with the net addition of 100,000 new subscribers in third quarter. The 100% owned Telekom Austria subsidiary, reported revenues of EUR82.4 million (USD104.1 million) and EBITDA of EUR41.9 million in the period under review, while its EBITDA margin was stable at 50.8%. The operating income in this quarter was EUR22.7 million. The ARPU grows from EUR6.9 in 2Q08 to EUR7.6 in 3Q08, driven by the launch of new attractively priced tariff plans and currency fluctuations. While, average MOU dipped from 165.8 to 162.8 in the same period.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 02 December 2008 11:07:03 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Vodafone has instigated the nationís first 3G mobile network. The firm expects the mobile broadband network will transform the local industry, delivering of a wide array of voice and data services to business users and consumers. This network is part of a FJD70 million (USD38.2 million) investment in 2008 using equipment supplied by Ericsson of Sweden.

Source: Wireless Federation.

3G | Oceania
Tuesday, 02 December 2008 11:06:08 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Anatel, the Brazilian telecoms regulator reports an addition of 4Mn new mobile lines in Octoberí08 experiencing a rise of 2.85% in comparison to Septemberí08. At the end of October, the number of registered active mobile lines reached 145Mn. Of the total mobile subscribers in October, 81.24% were prepaid and 18.76% postpaid.

Teledensity in Brazil went up to 75.2, up by 2.73% since Septemberí08 and 24.5% since Octoberí07.

The leader in mobile market share was Vivo with a market share of 29.7%, compared to 30.0% registered in September. Claro stood at the second place with 25.31%, down from 25.33%, and TIM came third with 24.70%, down from a 25.02% market share the month previous. Oi took the fourth position with registered 16.21% in October from 15.53% in September, while Brasil Telecom came in fifth with 3.67%, compared to 3.73%.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 02 December 2008 11:05:12 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The evergrowing competition in the Kenyan mobile market is expected to take down Safaricomís market share which will drop from its dominant 80% to 65% in another four years. The fall will be driven by the launch of rival operators, says Chief Executive Michael Joseph.

ďWe will have between 65% and 70% market share by 2011,Ē says Michael. The closest competitor to Safaricom is Zain, which has started offering all new lowered tariffs and products, which targets the lower segment of market, which was earlier captured by Safaricom.

The state owned Telkom Kenya is speedily building up its GSM ntwork under the brand name Orange. In order to stay in competition, Safaricom has invested more in data services and is building a WiMax network, to complement its broadband service launched in August this year.

ďWe are diversifying our revenue streams, with a shift from the voice market. Which is becoming increasingly unattractive, due to the low tariffs, to data,Ē says Michael. He additionally said that the operator with its broad network can fight the agressive competition.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 02 December 2008 11:04:15 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Megafon continues to grow in the Russian mobile market in the month of October by adding 960,894 new subscribers. Megafon, countryís third largest operator, is competing closely with Vimpelcom, which stood at 45.88 million, 31.7% of total net addition. Megafonís net additions counts to 38.7% share of Russiaís total net additions and totalled its subscriber base to 42.32 million. MTS lagged behind its rivals in terms of new additions, claiming just 19.4% with a subscriber base of 62.36 million in October, causing a threat to its number one position. Russia ended October with just over 182 million mobile subscribers, up from 179.54 million at the end of September.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 02 December 2008 11:02:52 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Digicel is nearing to recieve the mobile licence of Kiribati to launch GSM services in the country. The government of Kiribati approves Digicelís proposal of an investment of over $9.3 million in deploying a network across all Kiribatiís populated islands. According to Telecommunications Authority Chief Executive Pwanouia Aberaan the finalisation of the licence is under process and the issuing of licence is expected in next three weeks.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 02 December 2008 11:01:12 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

T-Mobile grabs the 3G licecne in Macedonia, being awarded by countryís telecoms regulator, The Agency for Electronic Communications (AEK). T-Mobile was the only bidder for the three available 3G licences. T-Mobile after the payment of $12.83 million fee to the regulator, the operator will be awarded the radio spectrum by 2008 end and will have to launch the network in next six months and a coverage of 50% in 12 months. The licence will be valid for 10 years.

Source: Wireless Federation.

3G | Europe
Tuesday, 02 December 2008 10:58:47 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Virgin Mobile South Africa, raises its data and SMS tariffs for both its prepaid and post-paid subscribers, eliminating off-peak rates. The rise in tariffs mean that Virginís peak-time tariffs are quiet lower than its competitors. On the other hand, it also means that users will not benefit from low off-peak rates. Virgin Mobileís all-day rate is now 60c/SMS. MMSs are charged at a flat rate of 75c each and its per-MB data rate is set at 60c in contrast with Vodacomís 4U charging 80c/SMS in peak times and 35c in off-peak times and Pay-as-you-go MTN subscribers are charged 75c/peak-time SMS while off-peak SMSs cost 35c. For data users, Vodacom and MTN charge around R2/MB for out-of-bundle data usage, their in-bundle rates for 2 GB or more drop to R0.19/MB. This is in comparison with Virgin Mobileís flat rate of R0.60 per megabyte.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 02 December 2008 10:57:35 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |