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 Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Moroccan telecoms regulator the ANRT has issued a report for the first quarter of 2009, showing that the country’s fixed lines in service reached 3.093 million at the end of March, up from 2.711 million at end-March 2008. The latest total included 1.791 million limited mobility fixed-wireless CDMA lines, up from 1.367 million, accounting for 57.9% of the overall fixed market at end-March 2009, up from 50.5% a year earlier. The vast majority of the limited mobility lines are operated by Wana, which accounted for 58.07% of the overall fixed line market by the end of 1Q 2009, ahead of Maroc Telecom with 41.69% of all lines, and Medi Telecom (Meditel) with 0.24%. In the residential segment, Wana's market share rises to 70.16%, but Maroc Telecom still dominates the lucrative business user market, with 96.57% of the country's 381,000 fixed lines registered to companies.

Click here to see full article

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009 15:13:07 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

India’s Economic Times is reporting that the introduction of mobile number portability (MNP) will take place in the four metro calling circles by 20 September 2009 at the latest. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has ordered that, following the award of contracts to Syniverse Technologies and MNP Interconnection for the management of MNP systems, rollout of the service must take place within six months in some regions. The DoT split the country into two zones for the purposes of MNP management, and Syniverse, which won the contract for zone 1, must implement MNP in Delhi, Mumbai, Maharashtra and Gujarat by September, while MNP Interconnection must facilitate the service in Calcutta, Tamil Nadu, Chennai, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka by that date. The remaining circles in each zone must have access to MNP by 20 March 2010. The DoT has also stated that the Telecoms Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) will be responsible for setting the fees for the services, and while no official announcement has been made regarding the pricing structure it is understood that the number porting fee is likely to be below INR300 (USD6.16).

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009 15:10:36 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Reliance ended Q1 with 72.7m mobile customers. This compares with 61.3m three months earlier and 45.8m at the end of the fiscal year 07/08, gains of 10.3m and 26.9m respectively. The company claims to be “India's largest integrated communications service provider” but the claim has something of a hollow ring when its numbers are set alongside those of Bharti Airtel. Reliance may be integrated, for what that's worth, but it just isn't as big as Bharti, either by revenues or customers. Its customer base of 77m (including Broadband) is less than Bharti's 96.7m, while its revenues - INR61.2bn in this latest quarter – fall well short of Bharti's INR98.2m.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009 15:08:54 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Ofcom, the UK’s telecom regulator has released the following data for the Top 4 Mobile Operators with the following observations:

- Total revenue across the UK’s four largest mobile operators declined by 2% in Q4 2008 compared to the previous quarter, reflecting a 3% fall in revenue from calls and other charges and a 2% fall in messaging revenues. There was an overall year-on-year fall in revenue of 1%.
- Total call volumes across the four operators grew by 2% quarter-on-quarter, driven by a 3% growth in call volumes to UK numbers.
- Outgoing international call volumes increased by 6% compared to Q4 2007 (0.2%) while the number of calls made while roaming abroad increased by 10%. (Direct result of lowered charges forced by EU)

- SMS and MMS volumes grew by 11% in Q4 2008, higher than any other quarter in 2008.
- The number of post-pay subscribers increased by 2% in Q4 2008, with the number of pre-pay subscribers remaining virtually unchanged (up 0.04%). Post-pay subscribers accounted for 48% of total subscribers in Q4 2008, compared to 45% in Q4 2007.
Detailed report here.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009 15:05:12 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

In India, mobile tariffs in comparison to other countries are lowest and are anticipated to further decline by 20-25% during 2009. The decline in tariffs will triggered by the new entrants and rapid expansion of the existing telecom players. “Whenever new entrants commence operations in the country, there is a high chance of reduction in tariffs as they come in with innovative strategies and prices, including freebies. Apart from tariffs, the price reduction would also be extended to handsets,” European handset major Meridian India CEO Rajiv Khanna, reportedly said. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) estimates that the country needs around 300,000 towers by 2010 to support the massive 10 million monthly subscriber additions.

In recent, the termination charges have been brought to 20 paise from 30 for domestic calls, which the operators have begun passing on to the subscribers, is also pulling tariffs down. Though, few firms are not in favour of lowering tariffs to be an apt option for competing in the telecom space. “Indian companies are rolling our predatory prices without conducting proper studies, unlike in the U.S. or developed countries. Price reductions coming in from desperate companies are anti-competition and these are not based on economic sense, and in the long run this would be anti-consumer and anti-industry,” said Idea Cellular Managing Director Sanjeev Aga.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009 08:46:30 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Zantel, the Tanzanian mobile operator, has launched prepaid internet service based on 3G technology in a package dubbed as ZConnect. Depending on the modem one uses, the service will offer internet at up to 3.1 Mbps. The plan is priced at TZS 6,000 for a daily subscription, TZS 30,000 for a weekly package and TZS 90,000 for monthly usage. The ZConnect service will be available in Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar, Pemba, Tanga, Dodoma, Morogoro, Arusha, Moshi, Mwanza, Tabora, Musoma, Shinyanga, Mbeya, Iringa and Ruvuma.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009 08:44:32 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Morocco has gained 700,000 mobile subscribers in Q1, taking its total subscriber base to 23.52 million, as per the figures revealed by ANRT. The market has grown by 3.07% and mobile penetration stood at 75.43% in first quarter ended in March. Maroc Telecom (IAM) experiences a rise in its subscriber base by 1.21% to 14.63 million from 14.46 million three months ago, holds 62.21% market share in March-end. Medi Telecom, which held 35.57% market share, posted a subscriber base of 8.37 million, up 5.56%. Wana Corporate reports a rise of 19.68% to 521,000 from 435,000 subscribers, captures a 2.22% market share.

Considering the overall growth, the number of subscribers in prepaid segment has grown by 3.13% to 22.58million and postpaid segment stood at 938,000, up 1.7%. The prepaid sector accounts for 96.01% of all Moroccan mobile phone subscribers. 3G arena experiences a rise of 26.555 to 339,314 in Q1 and nearly trebled from 87,278 in the same period a year ago. Wana leads the market share in 3G market with 62.49%, followed to this is Maroc Telecom with 19.03 percent and Medi telecom share stands at 18.48%.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009 08:43:21 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, 11 May 2009

According to the latest research by IDC, the unified communications (UC) market in Europe was worth $2.6 billion in 2008, and will grow at a CAGR of 39% to a value of $13.5 billion by 2013. This makes it one of the brightest spots in a very tough technology market.

"In such a challenging market, where spending is plummeting, there is a strong opportunity for solutions that can reduce expenses, such as travel, in the short term. This means that UC, which includes video and audio conferencing and collaboration solutions, is one of the few technology areas well placed to grow during the recession. In addition to cost savings, we see that in Europe environmental issues are becoming a major driver of the overall UC market, and specific submarkets such as high-end videoconferencing in particular. Not only can UC reduce an organization's travel budget, it can also reduce that company's carbon footprint and improve its corporate social responsibility standing," said Chris Barnard, research director, European Telecoms and Networking at IDC.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Monday, 11 May 2009 09:48:30 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Vodafone UK has introduced a new business mobile broadband package offering the subscribers “all they can use”. The Flat Rate mobile broadband package won’t ever cost the subscribers more than GBP 18/month and is available as a rolling 30 day contract. Subscribers will have to pay GBP 58.70 for their mobile USB modem stick with a twelve month contract and a mobile dongle at GBP 24.68. With eighteen and twenty-four month contracts, the dongles are free. The new package offers “all you can use” on downloads but still comes with a fair usage policy. The package offers roaming tariffs at GBP 8.50 per 24-hours in selected countries or GBP 4.25 per MB in other countries.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 11 May 2009 09:45:23 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Safaricom, the Kenyan mobile operator’s mobile money transfer service M-Pesa is still not proving to be profitable, despite the growth registered is high. Safaricom CEO Michael Joseph reportedly said that M-Pesa is handling around USD 10 million in transactions each day and adding around 11,000 new subscribers daily, but the service still does not turn a profit. M-Pesa at present has around 6.5 million subscribers and 9,000 distribution agents around Kenya. “It will become profitable on its own, but it’s not there yet,” Joseph said.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 11 May 2009 09:44:20 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Cell C, the South African mobile operator, has posted a 14% growth in its revenues for the FY 2008, to ZAR8.6 billion (USD1.03 billion). EBITDA dropped to ZAR813 million for 2008, down from over ZAR1 billion in 2007.

The operator added 1.6 million new subscribers to its kitty in 2008, taking the total subscriber base to 6.4 million.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 11 May 2009 09:42:19 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, 08 May 2009

Lebanese cellco MTC Touch, managed by Kuwait-based Zain Group, has completed an infrastructure network upgrade project, expanding its network capacity to 1.2 million lines and rolled out 150 new base stations nationwide, reports AME Info. It also upgraded many existing sites across the country. As part of the project MTC Touch upgraded its Intelligent Network platform to host up to a million pre-paid 'magic' customers, and implemented a core network expansion. The company recently announced it had reached one million active customers, and claimed a 57% market share, ahead of sole rival Alfa, currently managed by Egypt’s Orascom Telecom.

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, 08 May 2009 09:00:14 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Nigerian mobile operator Globacom (Glo Mobile) has introduced the concept of 'One Network' over for its customers roaming between its networks in Nigeria and neighbouring Republic of Benin. Both sets of subscribers can now make calls charged at local rates in their own local currency when travelling in either country. The offer is initially limited to voice calls; SMS texts and GPRS data services will be included in due course, whilst Globacom also says it will introduce the concept to other west African countries where it is deploying networks.

Glo launched services in Benin in June 2008, and the company claims it has signed up 750,000 subscribers so far; it aims to double that figure by the end of the year. Glo says it has covered 85% of the Republic via 85 base stations and one mobile switching centre.

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, 08 May 2009 08:58:45 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

According to the latest market report from French telecoms regulator Arcep, domestic telecoms operators generated EUR11.3 billion (USD15.1 billion) in revenues from electronic communications in the fourth quarter, while interconnection services and wholesale sales generated a further EUR2.2 billion in the quarter, it said. Fixed and mobile telephony traffic accounted for 53.6 billion minutes in the fourth quarter of 2008, down 0.5% on the fourth quarter of 2007.

Click here to see full article

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, 08 May 2009 08:57:46 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Ronan de Renesse, Senior Analyst at Screen Digest has just completed an analysis of the 3G mobile broadband market. Although the number of people using mobile networks to connect to the Internet through a device known as a ‘dongle’ will continue to rise, he predicts that the rate of growth is set for a big fall over the next two years.

There has been a significant uptake in the usage of mobile broadband in the past two years, especially in Europe where usage grew ten fold from one million people in 2006 to nine million in 2008. Put another way, the mobile broadband market is currently worth more than mobile TV, mobile games and mobile music combined. This way of accessing the Internet is particularly attractive as an alternative to a fixed connection for students living in private accommodation, people who live in more than one place and also people who live in areas where fixed broadband is simply not available.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Friday, 08 May 2009 08:54:38 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

One way to cope with the recession: More cell-phone users are dropping their landlines

For the first time, the number of U.S. households opting for only cell phones outnumber those that just have traditional landlines in a high-tech shift accelerated by the recession.

In the freshest evidence of the growing appeal of cell phones, 20 percent of households had only cells during the last half of 2008, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey released Wednesday. That was an increase of nearly 3 percentage points over the first half of the year, the largest six-month increase since the government started gathering such data in 2003.

The 20 percent of homes with only cell phones compared to 17 percent with landlines but no cells.

That ratio has changed starkly in recent years: In the first six months of 2003, just 3 percent of households were wireless only, while 43 percent stuck to landlines.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Friday, 08 May 2009 08:51:59 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Mobile end-user ARPUs dropped between 5% and 15% year-over-year in 4Q-2008 compared to 4Q-2007. China, India, and a number of other Asian markets dropped more than 10%. In Europe the ARPU contraction was in the range of -5 to -8%. In North America, YoY ARPU did not nosedive, as ARPUs were buoyed by mobile data. In South America, markets were more mixed with some markets deflating inline and others, like Brazil, managing to hold up ARPUs.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Friday, 08 May 2009 08:48:32 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The number of broadband enabled airplanes will increase from 25 in 2008 to 800 in 2009, reports In-Stat. As a result, broadband hungry airline passengers will generate over $47 million worldwide in 2009. The in-flight broadband market is still emerging and will grow well beyond $1 billion annually by 2012.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Friday, 08 May 2009 08:46:00 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, 06 May 2009

Verizon Wireless, the USA’s leading mobile operator, has introduced the Nationwide Plus Mexico plan that enables mobile subscribers to make calls to any number in the US, Puerto Rico and Mexico, including mobile phones, without long distance charges, 1000 night and weekend minutes for use in the US and Mexico, and unlimited mobile to mobile calling minutes while in the US. Family Share plans for Nationwide Plus Mexico are priced at USD 84.99 monthly access for two lines of service. Activation fees, taxes and other charges apply.

For a limited time, anybody can activate or switch to the Nationwide Plus Mexico plans will receive a one time USD15 bill credit. New subscribers have to ink a two year agreement. The promotion ends 30 June 2009. These plans are also eligible for the company’s no-cost Friends and Family feature, with which subscribers can make calls up to 10 phone numbers - landline or mobile - at no additional cost, regardless of day or time.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:35:58 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Movistar Argentina has introduced a new service dubbed as En Casa (’At Home’). The service allows the subscribers to acquire a mobile phone which is operational only at home, with a specific address defined by the user. The incoming calls are free of charge. The subscribers are charged a monthly fee, which includes airtime for voice calls, SMS or internet traffic.

After the available credit is over, the subscribers can top-up their Movistar en Casa account via Movistar Activa prepay cards or make electronic recharges. The offer is part of the Movistar Community services portfolio, which allows the operator’s mobile subscribers to call or send SMS to Movistar en Casa lines and vice-versa at 50% discounted prices.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:34:26 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Oi, the Brazilian mobile operator, has launched the mobile TV service in the State of Sao Paulo. The channels available include Cartoon Network, MTV, Woohoo, ESPN, Discovery, Discovery Kids, Esporte Interativo and Band News, as well as exclusive content such as TV Sexy Clube, Planet Green and Canal Oi. The channels are available via 3G networks. Subscribers can opt from three service package: 30 minutes for BRL 3.90, two hours for BRL 5.90 or 24 hours for BRL 9.90. There is no charge for data traffic. In order to use the service, subscribers need a compatible device and have to download an application from the operator’s Wap portal or via SMS.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:32:45 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Grameenphone, the Bangladeshi mobile operator, experienced a slow growth of 63,000 subscribers in Q1'09, taking the company's total subscriber base to 21.057 million, at March-end. Telenor, the parent company, has blamed the slower growth to rise in price of starter kits imposed last year. The number of subscribers is up by 2 million since Q1'08, showing a 6% growth in quarterly revenues in local currency. While usage and interconnect revenues grew, ARPU dropped by 13% driven by price erosion.

The EBITDA margin grew to 59.3% compared to 47.3% last year mainly due to higher revenue combined with lower subscription acquisition costs. Capex dropped in line with traffic, to NOK 281 million from NOK 433 million a year ago.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:30:29 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

T-Mobile CR, has launched a new roaming add-on, dubbed as Cestovatel (’Traveller’). Until 31 July, subscribers can receive free incoming calls and send SMS at discounted prices of CZK 5 per SMS and CZK 10 per MMS (VAT included).

The service will also be available in summer resorts across Greece and Bulgaria. The Cestovatel roaming add-on is available in Montenegro, Croatia, Hungary, Macedonia, Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Austria, Slovakia, Great Britain and the US. Calls within the visited country and to the Czech Republic are charged at CZK 4.76 per minute, plus the call set-up fee of CZK 34.51.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:29:33 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Mobilcom-debitel, the German mobile service provider, has introduced three mobile internet tariff options for its subscribers. The subscribers can choose between Take-away Basic, which is priced at EUR 0.99 a month, charging each MB at EUR1; Take-away Small, which costs EUR 4.95 a month including 5 MB, charging each additional MB at EUR 3.95 (T-Mobile, Vodafone) or EUR 0.50 (E-Plus, O2) and Take-away Flat, which cost EUR 9.95 a month, offers 250 MB via the E-Plus network, each additional MB is charged at EUR 0.50.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:27:29 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Orange France, has launched new mobile promotions valid until 17 June. The mobile operator is offering a discount of EUR 10/month for the first three months on the Origami Zen, First, Star and Origami for iPhone plans.

Subscribers under the age of 26 will be offered free unlimited SMS with all Origami subscriptions. New M6 Mobile and Mobicarte subscribers are given unlimited use of Orange Messenger by Windows Live for four months.

For subscribers above the age of 60, will enjoy a 10% reduction on Forfait Initial subscription plan. Until 17 June, the Orange Maps, Orange Mail and Blackberry Mail options will be offered at a discount of 50% for the first two months, as are the first two months of the TV Max option offering access to over 60 TV channel on Origami plans.

The promotion also includes rebates of EUR 50 on the Samsung Player Ultra, Nokia 5800 Xpress, LG Viewty Smart GC900, Sony Ericsson W705u and other phones bought with postpaid plans.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:26:34 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Azercell Telecom, the Azerbaijani mobile operator, has introduced a new campaign for its SimSim, GencSim and BizdenBize subscribers.

The new campaign will offer discounts during 3 Minutes = 30 Units campaign. All subscribers who subscribe to this campaign will spend only 30 units for first 3 minutes of in-network calls. Following 3 minutes, the fees will be defined according to the tariff package of subscribers.

“During this campaign subscribers can join or leave this campaign on many times as they wish. For this reason, they need to send SMS to 7575. In order to join the campaign, you should type “3 deqiqe” in the short message and “0” to leave the campaign by sending it to 7575. For these messages, subscribers will pay the SMS standard rate in accordance with their tariff package,” it was reported.

Calling short numbers and roaming calls are also covered by this 3 Minutes = 3 Units campaign. At the same time, the calls to the numbers of Friends and Relatives are estimated at the basis of previous tariff package, e.g. in accordance with tariffs of the Friends-Relatives campaign. With these exceptions, the campaign 3 Minutes = 3 Units campaign is considered as the most beneficial campaign for prepaid subscribers.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:25:03 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

According to a recent survey, Italy has recorded a mobile internet penetration of 13%, subscribers who connect to internet using their mobile phones at least once a month. The survey reveals that 6 million mobile subscribers connect their mobile handsets around 10 times a month and for an average duration of 11 minutes. 90% of the total web users mostly visited their operator’s portal, whereas more than 50% used for emails and 1/3rd of the total visited the news sites.

A strong growth in mobile connections to social network sites was also registered, at 14% of users, up 10% from 2008, 80% of which visited Facebook.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:24:01 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

MobiFone, the Vietnamese mobile operator, has launched the Voice SMS service for its subscribers. The service will be available at a price of VND 500/message with free incoming SMS charges.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:09:22 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The telecoms networks business, which sparked the first major bubble of the 2000s, is experiencing a resurgence. According to new data from TeleGeography’s Global Bandwidth Research Service, international bandwidth usage grew 64% in 2008.

The sustained rapid growth in bandwidth demand is spurring a wave of network expansion: more than 60% of US network operators surveyed by TeleGeography plan to light new fibres on their network in 2009. At the same time, the submarine cable industry is experiencing a flurry of new projects that is reminiscent of the early part of this decade: telcos plan to lay 16 new undersea cables in 2009, exceeding the number of cables laid in 2001, the peak of the submarine cable investment bubble.

Click here to see full article

Source: TeleGeography.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:06:46 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Mobile penetration in Uganda is expected to increase from 39.0 percent in 2009 to 70.7 percent by 2014, prompted by the successful liberalization of the sector and increased competition, according to a new report from Pyramid Research.

Although Uganda is one of the smallest markets in the region, it is also one of the fastest growing markets in Africa and the Middle East, notes Sylwia Boguszewska, analyst at Pyramid Research and author of the report. In the next five years, Pyramid anticipates Uganda will experience the second highest percentage increase in terms of mobile subscriptions among the African countries (after Cameroon). "Mobile penetration rose from just 1.9 percent at year-end 2002 to an estimated 39.0 percent in 2009," she says. "Pyramid expects it will increase further to reach 70.7 percent penetration by 2014, while the number of mobile subscriptions will exceed 27 million," she adds.

The Ugandan telecom sector has gone through a major transformation, notes Boguszewska. "As a result of a successful liberalization process, Uganda now boasts five mobile operators, three of which are well-established: MTN Uganda, Uganda Telecom, and Zain Uganda," she explains. "They were joined by Warid Telecom, which entered the market in February 2008, and Orange Uganda, which launched in March 2009," she adds. Anupam is due to enter soon, increasing the number of mobile operators to six.

Increased competition is driving down prices, with new entrant Warid being particularly aggressive to attract subscribers, and MTN's Zone pricing scheme has also shown high adoption. "Last year, the three mobile operators -- MTN Uganda, UTL, and Zain -- commanded 85 percent of mobile market subscribers, while Warid Telecom, despite its late entry in 2008, managed to gain a significant 15 percent market share," Boguszewska says.

Source: Cellular News.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:02:12 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Digicel Haiti has announced that it has reached a total of 2.1 million mobile subscribers, three years after launching its GSM network. Digicel quickly became Haiti’s largest mobile provider with an initial investment of USD260 million – the largest ever single private foreign investment in the country. Its launch lowered the cost of mobile services, and drove cellular penetration up from under 7% to over 35% today, and it claims to have a current market share of over 60%. Digicel Group is headquartered in Jamaica and incorporated in Bermuda, and has operations in 31 markets worldwide. Its Caribbean and Central American markets comprise Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Aruba, Barbados, Bermuda, Bonaire, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Curacao, Dominica, El Salvador, French Guiana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique, Panama, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad & Tobago and Turks & Caicos. The company also has coverage in St. Martin and St. Barths. Its Digicel Pacific arm comprises operations in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu, whilst it has a deal pending to buy an operator in the Cook Islands.

Source: TeleGeography.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 09:00:56 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

El Salvador mobile subscriber base has reached 6.9 million at 2008-end, reports Signals Telecom Consulting. According to Signals analyst Elias Vicente, the mobile subscriber base growth has resulted into lowered ARPU and the acquisition of a second and even third line per user.

El Salvador, in coming times intends to serve as a “laboratory market” for the launch of new service bundles and value-added multimedia services.

Fixed and wireless internet and pay-TV services will be the key reasons of growth in the domestic mobile market within the next five years.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 08:59:40 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Telenor Pakistan has introduced the Telenor SMS E-mail service that enables subscribers to bring all their e-mails directly to any type of mobile phone through SMS. The service supports e-mail accounts including Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo and other POP-based mailboxes. Mobile handsets which have SMS features support this service without any installations. New e-mails are pushed as SMS alerts immediately upon receipt to the phone. The SMS E-mail service can be accessed through the website and through a Wap browser on the handset.

The SMS E-mail service can subscribed for PKR 30 (excluding tax), which allows 1500 e-mail message alerts for one month. The price for forwarding, replying to, blocking, unblocking or requesting for a link to the complete e-mail will further be PKR 0.5 (excluding tax)/message. The subscription to SMS e-mail is valid for 30 days.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 08:58:37 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Orange Poland has launched a new mobile internet service for its residential and business subscribers. The Orange Free 39 and a Half service which allows subscribers to access the internet through their mobile phones or laptops.  The subscribers can enjoy 0.5 GB for internet traffic at speeds of up to 7.2 Mbps, at a price of PLN 39.50 per month.

Subscribers can also activate the offering as an add-on to a voice tariff subscription, or as part of a package offering a ZTE MF 636 USB modem at discounted prices and 2 GB memory card.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Wednesday, 06 May 2009 08:55:55 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, 04 May 2009

True Online, the internet arm of Thai full-service telco True Corp, has expanded its new 8Mbps DSL broadband service, into its first provincial market, the resort of Pattaya, reports the Bangkok Post. The company plans to expand the premium service to Chiang Mai and Phuket by the end of this year. True has signed up 10,000 8Mbps customers in Bangkok since upgrading its top speed in the capital last month, and forecasts the same number of users in Pattaya by end-2009. 8Mbps fixed broadband connections are currently only available to subscribers of True Online’s sister division, mobile operator True Move, and are bundled with a mobile internet subscription for THB1,199 (USD34) per month, including unlimited DSL data usage. Wireless connectivity is via True Move’s GPRS/EDGE cellular network and True’s Wi-Fi network, which is shared by all divisions of the group. True has more than 400 Wi-Fi hotspots in Pattaya, bringing its total to 16,000 locations nationwide, and providing internet access at speeds of up to 2Mbps. True expects its total number of fixed broadband subscribers to increase by 10% this year, from 650,000 at the beginning of January to 715,000 by the end of December, compared to growth of 18% in 2008.

Source: TeleGeography.

Monday, 04 May 2009 11:25:40 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Mi-Pay has extended its Globaltopup service to include India’s top five major cellular operators, which cover up to 89% of the sub-continent’s cellular subscribers.  The news follows a recent announcement by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, confirming India as the fastest growing cellular market in the world.

Globaltopup will appeal to those with family, friends or colleagues - travelling, working or living in India - who want to ensure that they have access to mobile airtime, whatever their location or circumstances.

“With over 391 million mobile subscribers and 13 mobile operators, India is ripe for mobile service deployment,” said Norman Frankel, CEO of Mi-Pay. “With 25 million Indians living and working abroad, it has one of the world’s highest international remittance figures.  This indicates a large base of non-residents regularly helping those financially back home.  We believe they will welcome the ability to provide vital cellular airtime to their relatives through our Globaltopup service.”

Frankel is quick to point out that demand will not be restricted to non-resident Indians. “There are large numbers of expatriate US, Canadian, and European citizens based on the Indian Subcontinent.  It is also a popular destination for gap-students, international travellers and cultural visitors. Indeed, tourism looks set to boom when India hosts the Commonwealth Games in 2010. With our service, all of these groups will be able to benefit from easier access to mobile services facilitated via top-ups from family, friends or employers based abroad.”

Easy to use and secure, Globaltopup allows registered customers in one country to buy airtime topups for people in different countries via the Internet.  All that is needed are the country, operator and recipient’s mobile number. Users simply choose from the topup amounts available, and the cost is given in the local currency at the prevailing exchange rate. Once the transaction is confirmed, Mi-Pay collects the payment and processes the topup immediately.

Click here to see full article

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 04 May 2009 11:23:46 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The subscribers will be charged not more than Rs. 300 to avail number portability service, likely to start from September 20. “It will be one time cost for subscribers seeking portability but the charge is not yet finalised by the DoT and TRAI, on which they are working. So far, it seems the charges would not be more than Rs 300 but this could be even below Rs 200,” according to the sources. The government has deliberately forced operators to keep the cost and charges at a level so that the subscribers are willing to use the service. Also at the same time make the service providers a viable business model, they said.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 04 May 2009 11:21:02 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Wireless phone companies still reap the lion's share of their revenue from calls, but they're pinning their hopes on fast-growing data services.

Prices for voice calling plans continue to tumble, driving down average revenue per subscriber, a key financial metric. But the surging use of iPhones and other Internet-connected mobile devices is driving double-digit growth in data revenue.

Despite the recession, purchases of smart phones are still going strong. The high-end devices, which pack computer-like features into a handheld-sized device, accounted for 23% of U.S. mobile phone purchases by consumers in the fourth quarter of 2008, up from 4% two years earlier, says research firm NPD Group.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Monday, 04 May 2009 11:19:36 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Vodafone Spain has launched new flat-rate tariffs, targeting unemployed customers, reports El Mundo, citing Carlos Vecino, marketing director of Vodafone Spain’s residential customers business. The operator will offer free mobile, fixed telephony and internet services for six months to its subscribers who lose their jobs or temporarily cease their activity. The operator plans to offer these benefits to up to 275,000 subscribers. Vodafone has also launched two new voice plans for residential users. The offer includes 350 minutes for voice calls for EUR 19.9 (VAT not included) per month and 1,000 free minutes for voice calls for a monthly fee of EUR 29.9. Users can choose between all-day calls to Vodafone numbers or national calls between 18:00 hours and 8:00 hours. Vodafone will also offer an additional free bonus of 1,000 on-net SMS, free national calls at weekends or free calls to fixed numbers 24/7. Starting 4 May, the operator will cut prices for its mobile internet and music flat-rate tariff plan by 25 percent, from EUR 12 to EUR 9 per month. Prices for the Vodafone En Tu Casa (’Vodafone at Home’) will also drop by 40 percent to EUR 9 per month, and the price of the 12 Mbps ADSL package which also includes free calls to national fixed numbers will go down 15 percent to EUR 33.9 per month. Vodafone has also revamped its offering for corporate customers, to meet the changes in the customers’ consumption habits, in line with the current economic slowdown. The operator has added two plans, available for a single monthly fee of EUR 29. Users can make free unlimited calls to fixed national numbers or choose a five-hour time slot for free mobile calls. The second option enables business customers to make calls to fixed and mobile numbers for five hours a day, at night and weekends.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 04 May 2009 11:15:50 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Vodafone, one of the world’s leading mobile operator, has launched its prepaid wireless broadband service for its subscribers and charges $19 for 500MB, $29 for 1GB and $49 for 3GB data. The validity of all prepaid credits is 30 days, but unused data up to 5GB can be rolled over if subscribers recharge before expiry.

Vodafone also offers an additional data of 10% for online recharges paid by credit card.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 04 May 2009 11:15:00 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

SFR, France based mobile operator, has reportedly launched a prepaid offer for iPhone 3G subscribers. The operator offers four top-ups: EUR 3 for 24 hours of internet access and unlimited e-mail, EUR 10 for 7 days of internet access and unlimited e-mail, EUR 20 for 20 days of internet access and unlimited e-mail, and EUR 24 for 20 days of internet access, unlimited e-mail and EUR 10 of call credit. SFR has also introduced a new capped plan for the iPhone, priced at EUR 29.90 monthly, until 19th August, on a two-year contract and EUR 32.90 per month on a one-year contract. The plan comprises of call credit for one hour of calls per month, plus unlimited use of messaging, internet, Wi-Fi hotspot access, and SFR TV.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 04 May 2009 11:13:11 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The customer registration programme instituted by Pakistani regulator the PTA began to take effect in Q3 08, and growth in that period slumped to less than a third of that recorded in Q3 07. The final quarter of the year saw an even worse result, the total declining by 0.30m to finish on 89.91m.

Although all of Pakistan's six operators appear to have been affected to some degree by the disconnection of unregistered customers, market leader Mobilink (Orascom) was by far the hardest hit. It lost 0.67m customers in Q3 and 2.88m in Q4, and finished the year with 28.48m, down 7.0% annually. January and February saw continued losses, a two-month decline of 0.36m taking its total customer base to 28.12m. Its market share at the end of February was 30.7%, a 13-year low.

Pakistan: Monthly Net Additions

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Monday, 04 May 2009 10:49:55 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

China Telecom has announced the commercial launch of its new CDMA-based 3G network. The cellco’s EV-DO network covers 52 Chinese cities, including eight of the country’s ten largest. Huawei Technologies provided the infrastructure. Rival cellco China Unicom is deploying W-CDMA as its 3G platform, while the leading operator by subscribers China Mobile, is rolling out a TD-SCDMA network.

Source: TeleGeography.

Monday, 04 May 2009 10:46:35 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Hungary’s three incumbent mobile operators Pannon, T-Mobile and Vodafone shed 69,342 subscribers between them in March, taking the country’s mobile subscriber base to 12.11 million, reports the national regulator, the NHH. Active mobile subscriptions reached 10.80 million at the same date, down from 10.92 million in the month of February it said, while cellular penetration dipped from 121.4% in February to 120.8%. By the start of April, Pannon had 34.70% of the market, (up from 34.63% in February), ahead of second-placed T-Mobile with 44.15% (44.10%) and Vodafone in third with 21.15% (21.27%).

Source: TeleGeography.

Monday, 04 May 2009 10:44:31 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
Bangladesh subscriber base has grown to  45.75 million in March from 45.21 million at the end of February, according to the statistics given by Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission.

GrameenPhone is leading the market with 21.05 million subscribers in comparison to 20.94 million in February. Followed to this is Banglalink which ended March with 10.83 subscribers, up from 10.70 million last month.

Aktel reported a subscriber base of 8.76 million, an increase from 8.59 million a month before. Warid Telecom subscriber base has grown from 2.20 million to 2.26 million,  CityCell reports 1.87 million subscribers from 1.85 million last month, followed with Teletalk, whose subscriber base mounts to 0.98 million from 0.93 million a month earlier.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 04 May 2009 10:41:44 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Worldwide, approximately 1.45 million BWA/WiMAX subscribers were added during 2008, while the WCDMA subscriber base increased by more than 90 million. The average quarter-over-quarter subscriber growth rate in 2008 was 21.5%, according to the 7th issue of the 4GCounts Quarterly Report from Maravedis.

"Total BWA/WiMAX revenues for 2008 totaled US$1.82 billion, compared US$898.78 million in 2007 - a 102% annual revenue increase despite the economic downturn that began affecting operator revenues in Q3 2008," noted Maravedis CEO and founder Adlane Fellah.

Click here to see full article

Source: Cellular News.

Monday, 04 May 2009 10:39:43 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The Commerce Commission of New Zealand (ComCom) has released its annual telecoms monitoring report, announcing that over USD882 million was spent on capital investment in 2008. The expenditure was largely accounted for by Telecom New Zealand updating its existing infrastructure to accommodate its strategic transition to an all-IP network, and NZ Communications, New Zealand’s long awaited third mobile operator – having secured 3G spectrum in 2001, rolling out the first stages of its mobile network.

The report also states that broadband subscriptions reached 915,000 by the end of December 2008, with Telecom NZ holding a 57% share of the overall market, a 4% drop since 2007. The mobile sector reported a 16% rise in call minutes over the course of the year, with mobile penetration reaching 111.9% at the end of December 2008, according to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database.

Source: TeleGeography.

Monday, 04 May 2009 10:35:54 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Hong Kong’s mobile data usage surged to 147 TB in January or an average 44 MB per 2.5G/3G mobile user, according the statistics available from Ofta. This shows four times and fourteen times the mobile data usage over the same period in 2008 and 2007 respectively. The subscribers of 2.5G/3G mobile phone have grown by 15% to 3.35 million in January on a year-on-year basis. The subscriber base totals to 11.43 million and penetration rate is over 163%. The growth of mobile data usage is attributable to the offer of competitive service packages by mobile network operators and the increasing popularity of smartphones available in the market, Ofta said.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 04 May 2009 10:33:14 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, 27 April 2009

The Malta Communication Authority has posted a report on telecoms market for the time period of July to December. According to the report the mobile sector of the country has experienced a swift growth during 2008. The Q4'08 saw coming of two new mobile operators, Bay Mobile and Redtouch fone, both of which operated on Vodafonefs infrastructure.

Melita Mobile also installed its own mobile infrastructure thereby creating more infrastructure-based competition in the mobile sector later in 2009.

The mobile subscriber base reached 385,636 by 2008-end, up by 3.8%. The postpaid subscriber base attributed to 13.6% of the total mobile subscriber base whereas the prepaid segment held 86.37% of the total base.

The mobile penetration in the country reached 94% at the end of 2008, up by 4% since a year earlier. During the last 6 months of 2008, over 23,000 subscribers changed operator, compared with 22,325 in the same period of 2007.

The mobile originating traffic grew by 8.3% whereas SMS traffic dropped from 264.21 million SMS in H2'07 to 241.53 SMS in H2'08, driven by promotional offers featuring free minute bundles.

Source: Wireless Federation.

Monday, 27 April 2009 11:46:24 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

­The Italian market lost a total of 135k customers over the year, with net losses in Q2 and Q4 trumping the smaller net gains in the other two periods. The year closed with a total base of 88.58m, compared to 88.72m, while penetration dropped from 152.6% to 152.4%.



Click here to see full article
Source: Cellular News.
Monday, 27 April 2009 11:26:43 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |