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 Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Argentina’s national statistics bureau Indec has revealed that the country ended December 2009 with 50.4 million mobile lines in service, up 8.4% year-on-year, BNamericas reports. Wireless telephony traffic reached 4.74 billion calls in December, representing an increase of 24.7% compared to the same month in 2008. Meanwhile, the number of fixed lines totalled 9.47 million at end-2009, up 1.1% compared to a year earlier, and public phones reached 142,800, a decrease of 8.5% year-on-year.

Local fixed line traffic during December 2009 was up 11.9% year-on-year to 1.40 billion calls, while domestic long-distance calls increased 20.1% to 403 million. Indec reported that there were 26.3 million outgoing international long-distance calls, an increase of 27.8% year-on-year, for a total of 87.3 million minutes, up 12.7% compared to December 2008.

Source: TeleGeography

Tuesday, February 02, 2010 4:18:24 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, February 01, 2010

Brazil’s telecoms regulator Agencia Nacional de Telecomunicacoes (Anatel) said the country was home to 7.47 million pay-TV subscribers as at 31 December 2009, up 18.2% year-on-year and the single largest yearly gain since 2002 when subscriptions leapt 26%. Net additions last year topped 1.15 million, Anatel said, compared with a rise of 972,281 in 2008, driven it said by a proliferation in the availability of multi-play packages.

The most popular access platform last year was cable TV which accounted for 57.9% of all pay-TV accesses, followed by satellite direct-to-home (DTH) technology with 37.3% and multichannel multipoint distribution service (MMDS) technology with 4.8%.

In terms of regional growth, Anatel reported strong uptake in northern Brazil. The northern region expanded by 28% last year, followed by the northeast with 21.9%. The principal operators in the domestic pay-TV market in Brazil are NET Servicos, Sky, TVA/Telefonica, Oi TV and Embratel.

Source: TeleGeography

Monday, February 01, 2010 11:59:44 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, January 22, 2010

China's telecommunications industry reported RMB842.43 billion (USD123 billion) in revenue in 2009, up 3.9% year-on-year, according to figures supplied by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT). Wireless telecoms contributed 60.43% of the revenue, while 27.8% was generated by fixed line operations and 11.8% from data communications. The number of new mobile phone subscribers in 2009 exceeded 106 million, taking the total subscriber number to 747 million. Fixed line subscribers fell by nearly 27 million to 313.68 million at the end of the year.

Source: TeleGeography

Friday, January 22, 2010 5:30:06 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The total number of registered SIM cards in Brazil reached 173.96 million at the end of 2009, up 23.3 million year-on-year, the regulator Anatel reports. The gains were driven it said, by increased promotional offers offering discounts and/or bundled airtime to lure new users. Cellular penetration reached 90.55% at the end of the year, it added.

At the start of this year, Brazil’s leading operator by subscribers was Vivo Participacoes, with a market share of 29.8%, followed by Telecom Americas (Claro) with 25.5%. Third place was claimed by Telecom Italia’s TIM Participacoes (TIM Brasil) unit, with 23.6%, while Telemar Norte Leste (Oi) had 20.7%.

Source: TeleGeography

Wednesday, January 20, 2010 4:49:54 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, January 15, 2010

China's population of Internet users jumped by nearly a third to 384 million at the end of last year, an official report showed on Friday, days after Google threatened to retreat from the expanding market.

The report from the state China Internet Network Information Center (www.cnnic.net.cn) underscored the growing scope of the Internet in the country, which Google said it may quit because of censorship and hacking. Throughout 2009, the number of Chinese Internet users grew by 86 million -- more than the total population of Germany -- or a rise of 28.9 percent compared to the end of 2008.The survey, based on a count of residents who said they used the Internet in the past six months, found 29 percent of China's 1.3 billion people are now net users.

The numbers establish China's position as the world's largest online community, more than the entire population of the United States."Although the rate of (Internet) participation continues to rise, compared to developed countries, China's rate of Internet participation remains quite low," said the report.By contrast, 74 percent of Americans use the Internet and 77 percent of South Koreans, it said.China's rate of growth in Internet users slowed compared with 2008, when the number grew by 41.9 percent. In 2002, China had 59 million users.

With China's expanding 3G mobile network, more than 120 million people used mobile Internet applications, said the Chinese-language report. The number of people using the Internet to book travel, bank and carry out other commerce grew by 68 percent year-on-year.

Source: Reuters

Friday, January 15, 2010 11:12:40 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, January 14, 2010
Serbia's telecommunications agency Ratel announced that Telenor was the only company to present a bid for the country's second fixed-line operator licence. Another three companies had qualified for the bidding - mobile operator VIP, Cyprus-based Kerseyco Trading and Serbian-American Konsing Group. However, Telenor was the only bidder to submit all the necessary documents and its financial bid will be opened by 18 January. The licence for a second landline operator is granted for a period of ten years. Telenor already holds one of Serbia's three mobile telephony licences.
 
Source: TelecomPaper
Thursday, January 14, 2010 11:10:37 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

A total of 4.2 million people requested number portability (NP) in Brazil last year, according to data published by the body managing number portability in the country, ABR Telecom. The agency also reported that of the total, 3.2 million people actually completed their switch to a new provider – equivalent to 1.56% of the 210 million fixed and mobile lines in the country. ABR Telecom said that 2.28 million lines were mobile phones and around one million were fixed line connections. NP began to be introduced in Brazil in September 2008, and it was available throughout the country by March 2009. To date, a total of 4.52 million people have requested to switch, of whom 3.48 million have been successfully ported.

Source: TeleGeography

Thursday, January 14, 2010 11:07:57 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Indian state-owned telco Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) has announced that it hopes to have attracted around one million 3G subscribers by the end of the current fiscal year, according to the Economic Times. Despite signing up just 35,000 3G subscribers at end-June 2009 having launched commercial services in February 2009 interest has climbed significantly, with SS Sirohi, BSNL’s principal general manager (Value Added Services), noting: ‘We have received good response and have about 700,000 3G users and by the end of this fiscal, we should have crossed a million.’

With the auction process for 3G spectrum in India still having yet to take place, BSNL and fellow state-owned telco Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd (MTNL) are the only two operators to have received frequencies, and are looking to take advantage of the head start. ‘We are present in 300 cities and towns, which will be increased to 760 over the next three to four months,’ Sirohi said, while also adding that BSNL is focusing on introducing a variety of Value Added Service (VAS) offerings to drive its 3G tariffs: ‘Apart from cheap calling rates, we are also offering cheap video calling, video streaming and full track download. We will soon offer videoconferencing and other interesting applications.’

Source: TeleGeography

Thursday, January 14, 2010 11:05:21 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Outremer Telecom, which provides telecoms services in the French overseas territories, has announced the commercial launch of its 3G networks in Guadeloupe and French Guiana. The new offering, launched under the ‘Only’ brand, will enable customers to access services such as mobile broadband via laptop or wireless handset.

The company already operates third-generation networks in the territories of Martinique and Reunion.

Source: TeleGeography

3G
Thursday, January 14, 2010 9:47:18 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Latvia’s three largest mobile network operators by subscribers – Tele2 (Latvia), Latvijas Mobilais Telefons (LMT) and Bite Latvia – have agreed to reduce the time taken to port mobile numbers, Delfi.lv reports. It is understood that the three cellcos, in line with instructions issued by the European Commission, will speed up the number porting process from the ten days it currently takes to just five from 1 March 2010.

‘We are pleased with the agreement, but we believe that operators are now technically ready to provide number portability within one day. Therefore...we argued for the need to reduce the time of transfer rates to one day. Reducing the transfer time will favourably influence the number of choices for mobile users,’ said Zita Zilgalve, director of Bite Latvia. According to European Commission directives, prior to 11 May 2011 mobile number portability timeframes should be reduced to no longer than one day in all eurozone countries.

 

Thursday, January 14, 2010 9:42:25 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Belarusian national PTO Beltelecom says it is looking to more than double its broadband internet subscriber base to one million by the end of this year, up from the 400,000 it reported at the end of 2009. Local online news portal e-belarus.org says that in addition to its ADSL user base, Beltelecom also boasts a network of 480 ‘active’ Wi-Fi hotspots across 220 regions in the country.

Last year the national fixed line operator expanded the external internet gateway from 5.2Gbps to 22Gbps, of which the Russian gateway to Rostelecom and Transtelecom accounts for 20Gbps, and the remaining 2Gbps is accounted for through its western link with Tata Communications.

Source: TeleGeography

Thursday, January 14, 2010 9:31:10 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Slovakian incumbent PSTN operator Slovak Telekom’s fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network now covers over 315,000 households, an increase of 100,000 in twelve months, Broadband TV News reported. The network reaches 19 cities including Banska Bystrica, Kosice and the capital, Bratislava, delivering services including ‘Magio TV’ IPTV channels and internet access at speeds of up to 80Mbps, and Telekom says it will roll out FTTH to additional areas in these cities, as well as to other towns, during this year.

Source: TeleGeography

Thursday, January 14, 2010 9:29:13 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The British government has begun a twelve-week consultation on the proposed broadband tax that is expected to help fund the rollout of superfast broadband services across the country, Reuters reports. It has been widely claimed that the current government is keen to sign the new levy into law prior to the upcoming general election, which is expected in May 2010.

Under the proposals, which were unveiled as part of the Digital Britain report released in June 2009, the state plans to raise approximately GBP150 million to GBP175 million (USD225 million to USD263 million) per year by introducing a GBP0.50 per month levy on every fixed line voice and/or broadband connection. This extra charge is to be paid in to a Next Generation Fund (NGF), which will be managed by regulator Ofcom. The consultation launched has called on telecoms and internet industry players to put forward views on how the funds raised should be spent. Business Secretary Peter Mandelson said that the investment was essential to preserve Britain's international competitiveness and prevent a new digital divide emerging between those with fast and those with slow connections, noting: ‘Already the market is delivering superfast Internet speeds of 50Mbps to half the country but we cannot be certain that it will reach the communities that are not currently served.’

The government has estimated that as the result of private investment already being undertaken by providers such as fixed line incumbent BT and cableco Virgin Media, superfast broadband will reach around 70% of the population by 2017, but the state is keen to boost this figure to 90%.

Source: TeleGeography

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 11:58:29 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

BNamericas reports that Ecuadorian state-owned national PSTN operator Corporacion Nacional de Telecomunicaciones (CNT) added 135,000 new fixed lines during its first year of operation since the merger of regional telcos Andinatel and Pacifictel in November 2008. The company currently has approximately 1.8 million subscribers nationwide, after spending CAPEX of around USD258 million in 2009 and focusing on increasing coverage in areas including the Austro and Amazonia regions, according to local reports.

CNT’s overall aim is to increase fixed line penetration to 18% of the population by the end of 2010, up from 13.5% at end-2007.

Source: TeleGeography

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 11:54:34 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Taiwanese regulator the National Communications Commission (NCC) has announced plans to implement a 5.87% cut on mobile service rates from 1 April 2010. The regulator, citing ITU figures, revealed that the country’s mobile charges as a percentage of per capita income rank as the 26th highest in the world, and are currently three times higher than Hong Kong. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Taiwan’s mobile industry has flourished despite the apparent high charges, with a cellular penetration rate of 116% at the end of September 2009.

Meanwhile, ADSL charges will also be subject to a similar reduction, with rates being cut by 5.68%, benefiting the country’s 15.47 million ADSL users.

Source: TeleGeography

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 11:49:40 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Zia Ahmed, the head of the Bangladesh Telecommunications and Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has announced that guidelines for 3G licensing will be complete by June 2010, ahead of an open auction of at least four UMTS network operating concessions by the end of the year. A number of major international telecoms companies have already indicated their interest, Ahmed added, whilst other BTRC officials were quoted in a report from AFP saying that UK-based mobile giant Vodafone Group had approached the regulator for permission to apply for a licence. India’s Airtel also seems likely to place a bid, after its proposed offer for a majority stake in the Bangladeshi mobile unit of Warid Telecom recently received regulatory approval.

Source: TeleGeography

3G
Wednesday, January 13, 2010 11:46:22 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Chinese news agency Xinhua reports that at the end of 2009 voice telephony services were available to 99.86% of the country’s administrative villages (up from 98% a year earlier), while internet access covered 91.5% (up from 89%), according to data from the regulator MIIT. Between them, China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom raised RMB10.3 billion (USD1.5 billion) to help deploy telephone and internet networks in mountainous regions and plateau areas last year.

Meanwhile, China Mobile is reported to have finished 2009 with more than five million 3G subscribers. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database the cellco launched its 3G TD-SCDMA network in April 2008.

Source: TeleGeography

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 11:42:58 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
The UK government is seeking comments on how to spend its planned GBP 1 billion Next Generation Fund.
 
First unveiled last summer, the fund will be used to bring next-generation broadband services to rural and under-served areas of the country, with the goal of 90 percent of the population able to access the faster services by 2017. The fund will be financed by a tax of GBP 0.50 on fixed-line subscriptions, for which legislation is pending. The government expects the market will deliver the faster broadband to around 60-70 percent of the country, and wants the public fund to support the roll-out of fast networks in other areas.
 
The consultation published by the department for business innovation and skills is seeking feedback on a number of issues, with responses due by 1 April. Questions include minimum requirements for next-generation access and services, estimated costs of roll-out for different technologies, whether to distribute funds on a regional or national level and in what areas of the country, models for distributing the state aid, possible market-distorting effects of the aid, and obligations on deployed networks such as clawback of funds or open access.
 
Source: TelecomPaper
Wednesday, January 13, 2010 11:40:14 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Tanzania’s communications sector was the top performer in terms of the country’s national economic growth in the financial year 2008/09, with a strong increase in the mobile phone user base being the main driver. Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Mustafa Mkulo, said the overall mobile subscriber base total grew from 9.5 million people in 2008 to 15 million last year, in the process increasing airtime revenues. The communications sector expanded by 19.2% in 2009 he went on to say, eclipsing the next best performance from the mining sector (15.6%), the financial sector (11.9%) and trade and construction, which grew by one percentage point to 10.5%.

Source: TeleGeography

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 10:56:33 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Mobile operator Moov Togo has resumed the provision of wireless services in the country after the suspension of its operations for four months, African news agency Pana Press reports. In August 2009 Atlantique Telecom, which manages Moov’s operations in Togo and five other countries in Africa, failed to renew its operating licence in the West African country.

The concession expired in June 2008, after which the company was given until 10 August 2009 to pay a CFA20 billion (USD44 million) renewal fee. Negotiations between the cellco and regulator broke down close to the deadline and Moov’s network was shut down, leaving around 600,000 subscribers without a mobile service and sparking protests involving over 2,000 people. Under the terms of the new agreement, Moov will pay CFA25.75 billion over a period of twelve years, instead of the CFA20 billion previously required over a ten-year period. The company has reportedly already made a down payment of CFA11.75 billion, and will pay the remainder over the required time-span.

Source: TeleGeography

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 10:51:44 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, January 12, 2010

­Bangladesh's Grameenphone has announced that it crossed the 23 million active subscriber mark last week, which indicated resurgence in subscriber growth for the Company.

Earlier in October this year the Company had announced 22 million subscribers with the acquisition of nearly a million new subscriptions in the third quarter of 2009, driven primarily by a startup price campaign, on the occasion of Eid festival during and after the Holy month of Ramadan.

This new additional million subscribers follows on the re-introduction of the subsidized BDT 150 start-up price, in November 2009.

Commenting on the resurgence and latest growth, Grameenphone CEO, Oddvar Hesjedal said that he was happy to see such a milestone closing for Grameenphone in 2009 with a subscriber base of 23 million. "As a company with now over 23 million subscriptions we are no doubt the preferred operator in the market," he said, "but this new addition of 1 million subscribers clearly demonstrates the stranglehold to growth of tele-penetration that the BDT 800 SIM tax has on the country because of the growth we see when the SIM tax is removed from the connection cost."

As of November 2009 there were 50.5 million mobile subscribers in the country and Grameenphone, with 23 million subscribers, holds 45.5 per cent of the market share.

Source: Cellular News

Tuesday, January 12, 2010 4:16:32 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
The German mobile telecommunications services market reached EUR 5.0 billion in revenues in the third quarter of 2009, down 2.5 percent compared to the same period last year and up a seasonal 2.8 percent from the previous quarter, according to independent market research firm Telecompaper. The increase in non-voice (messaging and data) revenues of EUR 142 million in the last 12 months was again not able to compensate for the continued pressure on voice service revenues from cuts to mobile termination fees and fierce competition. T-Mobile Germany was able to increase its leadership position with 0.8 percent to over 36 percent market share, while Vodafone Germany's weaker performance (particularly in postpaid) contributed to a loss of 1.4 percent points to a market share below 34 percent. Growth in the prepaid segment at E-Plus and O2 Germany helped them to compensate for their drop in postpaid and slightly increase their share of total service revenues by respectively 0.4 and 0.3 percent points. In terms of mobile subscribers, the German market added around 1.0 million or 1.0 percent more customers in the three months to September 2009. During the last 12 months, the mobile industry added more than 2.2 million new subscribers to a total 108 million, mainly due to postpaid growth. Market penetration rose to 132.0 percent, from 129.0 percent a year earlier.
 
Telecompaper has updated its market outlook: For 2009, the mobile market is expected to decline 2-3 percent to around EUR 19.4 billion in total mobile service revenue and for 2010 a similar development is expected.
 
Source: TelecomPaper
Tuesday, January 12, 2010 4:14:03 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
Japan ended December 2009 with 110.62 million mobile subscribers, up by 440,700 from end-November, figures from the Telecommunications Carrier Association (TCA) show. Softbank Mobile again led in subscriber additions in December as it added 165,300 new subscribers, bringing its total to 21.67 million. Softbank was followed by NTT Docomo which attracted 138,800 new customers in the month to reach a total of 55.44 million subscribers.
Emobile gained 72,900 new customers, to reach a total of 2.12 million and KDDI ended December with 31.39 million mobile customers after signing-up 63,600 new customers. PHS provider Willcom shed 50,600 subscribers, bringing its total to 4.29 million. However, Willcom saw the number of customers using its 'Core 3G' service rise to 80,200 subscribers, up from 72,000 in November.
 
Source: TelecomPaper
Tuesday, January 12, 2010 4:09:54 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |