International Telecommunication Union   ITU
 
 
Site Map Contact us Print Version
 Friday, December 14, 2012

The UK’s rural broadband rollout strategy, which had been placed on hold in July 2012 in order for European regulators examine to it, looks set to get underway again with the European Commission (EC) confirming that Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), the umbrella support scheme for investments in next generation access (NGA) broadband networks, does comply with European Union (EU) state aid rules.

BDUK, a team within the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), was set up to deliver the government’s broadband strategy, with its main role being to allocate and distribute funding to bring superfast broadband to the third of UK homes and businesses which are not expected to be provided for by commercial rollouts. The British government had originally aimed for an open process in which community groups and private firms would be commissioned to build Europe’s ‘best superfast broadband network’, with BDUK having published a framework covering 35 local authority areas, under which contractors competed to win equipment supply deals. However, with claims that the selection criteria had proved insurmountable, a number of companies, including Geo and Cable & Wireless, withdrew from the process last year. With fixed line incumbent BT and Fujitstu emerging as the only two companies to ink contracts for a rural broadband rollout, the EC said that no work would move forward until it was satisfied with the plans. One of the main concerns with the setup was reportedly that BT was unprepared to offer access on a sufficiently open basis to the infrastructure it will roll out, with Brussels thought to want the incumbent to allow rival operators to be able to rent its dark fibre.

With the EC suggesting that the total value of aid to be delivered by the scheme would be around GBP1.5 billion (USD1.8 billion), it claimed this would likely enable the UK to achieve the objective of the EU Digital Agenda of coverage of 30Mbps networks for all European citizens. Further, noting that the design of the BDUK scheme contained several ‘best practices’ which it claimed would ‘help to ensure more effective, better targeted and less distortive public interventions’, the EC also pointed out that UK telecoms regulator Ofcom will have a crucial role in designing wholesale access prices and conditions. The UK meanwhile is understood to have committed to submitting an evaluation of the scheme to the Commission before 31 March 2015, while it will also ensure that any forthcoming scheme will take this evaluation into account.

Commenting on the decision, Joaquin Almunia, EC vice president, noted: ‘BDUK, as a national competence centre, will assist local granting authorities in designing and implementing successful broadband support measures in line with EU competition rules. The umbrella scheme will be a big step towards the achievement of the EU Digital Agenda targets and a strong impetus for growth in the UK.’

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 11:10:03 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

In the wake of slowing subscriber growth NTT East and NTT West have cut prices for their fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) service by 34%, from JPY5,460 (USD67) to JPY3,600. The move is widely seen as a measure to stem the flow of customers leaving fixed broadband services in favour of mobile broadband platforms such as Long Term Evolution (LTE). According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, NTT’s net addition of FTTH subscribers fell from 2.046 million during the twelve months ending June 2010 to 1.756 million in the twelve months ending June 2011, and fell further to 1.277 million over the twelve months to June 2012. Australian technology news site Delimiter cites sources at NTT East and NTT West as being convinced that the main reason for the slowing FTTH take-up is due to many younger users preferring not to pay for a household-based FTTH service when they are already paying for their own smartphone LTE data plan. Unlike its smaller rival KDDI, NTT is prohibited from offering FTTH and LTE from its subsidiary NTT DoCoMo in a single bundled offering.

Source: TeleGeography.

FTTH/B | LTE | Tariffs
Friday, December 14, 2012 11:08:20 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Ukraine’s third largest cellco Astelit (life:)) claims that it had 2.3 million mobile internet users on its GPRS/EDGE network at the end of September 2012, or 28% of its overall active mobile subscriber base which reached 8.2 million at that date (up from 7.1 million a year earlier). The number of active smartphones on Astelit’s network increased by 42% year-on-year to 1.07 million at end-September 2012, while overall mobile market leader Kyivstar reported at the same data that it had 2.56 million active smartphone subscribers, less than second-placed GSM operator MTS Ukraine which claimed almost three million smartphones, ProIT reported.

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 11:06:55 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Vodacom Tanzania has announced that the number of people signed up to its mobile money service M-PESA has passed the 4.4 million mark, representing around 48% of its total subscriber base in the country. The service, which allows users with a recognised ID card to deposit, withdraw, and transfer money easily through a mobile device, is seeing strong growth. In February this year Vodacom confirmed that the number of M-PESA users stood at 2.7 million users – or 23.4% of the base. The cellco’s CEO Rene Meza says: ‘about TZS35 billion (USD22 million) is transacted daily through M-PESA and attributed this to the fact that the service is safe and reliable and is available throughout the country.’

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 11:05:51 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Orange Moldova has announced the commercial launch of 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) services. ‘From today 4G technology is available to all persons and entities in [the capital] Chisinau and its suburbs,’ said Ludmila Klimok, general director of Orange Moldova, at a press conference. The move follows a commercial launch of LTE by InterDnestrCom (IDC) in April 2012, and a limited test launch of LTE by another rival, Moldcell, last week.

Source: TeleGeography.

CIS | LTE
Friday, December 14, 2012 11:04:37 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The Yemeni government has begun installing a national WiMAX network to improve the availability of internet access, reports National Yemen. The project is to be completed in two phases and will see the deployment of 28 stations covering Sanaa and Aden. The rollout is expected to cost YER591 million (USD2.736 million). Commenting at a ceremony marking the launch of the project, Minister of Telecommunications Dr. Ahmed Obaid Bin Daghar said: ‘We are looking for all the people to benefit from this technology and it will be available to all kinds of people, and not just a specific group. It will be helpful in many fields – in education, health, communication.’

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 11:03:38 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has quashed speculation that it is looking to shake up the United Arab Emirates’ wireless market by licensing mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs). ‘There are no plans for MVNOs. We are happy with the current structure of the market,’ local newspaper The National quotes Mohamed Al Ghanim, director general of the TRA, as saying. Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) and Du are the country’s sole mobile operators, between them accounting for around 13.01 million wireless subscribers at 30 September 2012, according to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database. Etisalat is the market leader, although the incumbent has seen its share steadily eaten away since its only rival launched in February 2007, leaving Etisalat with 54.2% of the market at the end of Q3 2012, down from around 60% a year earlier.

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 11:02:33 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Afghanistan’s Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT) has awarded WiMAX licences to three operators to increase the availability of internet access in the nation. Neda Telecom, IO Global and Arianna Network Services were each awarded a licence for a fee of USD520,000. The MCIT said in a statement that between 20% and 30% of subscribers to telecoms services currently have access to the internet, though with the issuance of the trio of WiMAX licences, and the allocation of 3G licences earlier this year the ministry hopes to increase access to around 80% of the population within two years.

Telecom minister Amirzai Sangin added: ‘to change Afghanistan into [an] advanced technological and e-government country, implementing of advanced technologies is necessary and provides great facilities to the residents of the country. 3G and WIMAX technologies [will] provide fast internet services for the people of Afghanistan.’

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:57:59 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

AT&T Mobility has announced that its Long Term Evolution (LTE) network now covers more than 150 million people across 103 cities, surpassing its original target of 100 cities by the end of 2012. This new coverage figure is more than double that offered at the end of 2011. AT&T plans to expand LTE coverage to 250 million people by end-2013 and to 300 million by the end of 2014.

Source: TeleGeography.

LTE
Friday, December 14, 2012 10:56:35 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Claro Puerto Rico has announced the full commercial launch of 4G LTE mobile broadband services for handset, modem and tablets users in 19 of the island’s 78 municipalities, including the three largest cities, San Juan, Ponce and Mayaguez, promising mobile data speeds of up to 30Mbps. Company president Enrique Ortiz de Montellano, quoted by news site El Nuevo Dia, said the company has invested over USD230 million over the last year in the deployment of fibre-optic network infrastructure and 4G wireless access, adding that LTE coverage would be available ‘throughout the island’ in the first quarter of 2013. Having announced a ‘soft launch’ of LTE technology in San Juan around a year ago, Ortiz de Montellano explained that the delay in bringing a commercial 4G service to market had a lot to do with waiting for the right range of smartphones to become available. At launch the cellco is offering the Motorola RAZR HD XT925 LTE handset as an exclusive in the country, while on its website it also advertises the Samsung Galaxy S III LTE i747 and Nokia Lumia LTE 900 handsets. A 4G modem, the ZTE MF820 USB LTE, is also offered on the site, as is 4G connectivity for compatible tablets.

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:55:08 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The Autorite de Regulation des Communications Electroniques et des Postes (ARCEP) has announced that it has slashed the period of time in which cellular operators must process mobile number portability (MNP) requests in certain overseas territories from ten days to just two working days. Countries which will benefit from the change are Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guiana, Saint-Martin and Saint-Barthelemy. The corresponding MNP time-frame was implemented in metropolitan France on 7 November 2011 and in Reunion and Mayotte on 31 July 2012. MNP was implemented across the French West Indies on 1 April 2006; a reduced MNP time-frame was first mooted in 2010.

Source TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:49:41 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Germany’s telecoms regulator, the Federal Network Agency (FNA, also known as Bundesnetzagentur or BNetzA), has published its proposal for new mobile termination rates charged by the country’s four mobile network operators. From 1 December 2012 the watchdog suggests that the rate fall to a uniform EUR0.0185 (USD0.024) per minute from the previous fees of EUR0.0336 for Royal KPN’s local unit E-Plus and UK-based Vodafone Germany, EUR0.0338 for Telekom Deutschland (the domestic fixed and mobile arm of Deutsche Telekom) and EUR0.0339 for Spain’s Telefonica (O2). In a second step, mobile termination rates will drop further, to EUR0.0179 per minute, on 1 December 2013. The announced rate cuts are provisional and subject to a national consultation procedure, and subsequent feedback from the European Commission and regulators in other European Union member states.

Responding to the proposed rate cuts, Reuters cited a Deutsche Telekom spokesperson as saying that the decision would cost the German telecom operators about EUR500 million annually, adding that the cuts didn’t bode well for future investments in fast internet. ‘With this decision the Bundesnetzagentur follows the complete erroneous European policy of the past ten years, which has cost the European telecom sector its global leading role,’ the spokesperson said. Vodafone meanwhile said the decision will drag money away from much needed investment in faster networks.

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:44:27 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
Telefonica Ireland, which trades under the O2 brand name, has revealed that it will begin deployment of a 4G LTE network in the first half of next year. The cellco issued a statement of intent after recently securing spectrum in the 800MHz, 900MHz and 1800MHz frequency bands, saying that it plans to invest EUR200 million (USD255 million) to upgrade its network to LTE over the next three years. ‘4G will significantly change the way consumers use their mobile devices and will transform our ability to meet customer demand for new products and services as they move to adopt smartphones, mobile modems and tablets in ever greater numbers,’ said Telefonica Ireland CEO Tony Hanway.

Source: TeleGeograhpy.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:42:29 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Brunei’s telecoms regulator, the Authority for Info-communications Technology Industry (AITI), has published its annual ICT indicators. Although no time-frame is mentioned by the regulator, it is assumed that the figures apply to the end of the country’s financial year, 31 March 2012. The regulator has revealed that the Sultanate’s mobile user base reached 449,260, up from 443,161 a year earlier. That total comprises 382,286 pre-paid users and 66,974 post-paid contract customers. Meanwhile, the number of fixed line subscribers increased from 79,839 to 80,039, ending a negative trend of falling subscriber totals evident in 2010 and 2011. In terms of internet access, the AITI reported 21,492 fixed line broadband subscribers, 4,161 dial-up users and 27,620 mobile internet users.

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:40:38 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

State-owned telecoms giant Rostelecom has announced that its broadband subscriber base passed the nine million mark at the beginning of November 2012, which it says is almost four times more than its nearest competitor. The national operator has indicated that the growth in high speed internet users is being driven by the uptake of fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) and fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) platforms, with the company’s fibre-optic user base reportedly doubling on an annual basis.

Source: TeleGeography.

Broadband | CIS | FTTH/B
Friday, December 14, 2012 10:39:26 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Brazilian cable services operator Net Servicos (Net) now has more than five million residential broadband subscribers in the country, Telecompaper reports without citing its sources. The cableco, which offers high speed internet access under the Net Virtua banner, says it reached the milestone in September, and now claims to be the market leader in that particular segment. Recent successes in subscriber take-up have been driven by the success of its convergence strategy – offered via Net Combo. Net says that four out of five subscribing households currently take at least two of the three services on offer – voice telephony, broadband internet and pay-TV – and that its network now passes six million homes.

Earlier this month the cableco reported that favourable exchange rates were the reason why its third-quarter net profit quadrupled to BRL108 million (USD53.3 million) from BRL23.6 million in 3Q11. The company, which is controlled by America Movil (AM) of Mexico, confirmed that its results were boosted by the depreciation of the Brazilian real versus the US dollar in the third quarter, adding that income for the period was ‘substantially influenced by the positive effects of exchange rate changes.’ The real fell 13% against the dollar compared with 3Q11. Net reported third-quarter revenue of BRL2.03 billion in July-September, up from BRL1.7 billion in the three months ended 30 September 2011. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) was BRL559 million, up from BRL486 million a year earlier.

Source: TeleGeography.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:37:46 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

China Unicom is going through a critical transformation as the operator is shifting its focus to its data business. Weak domestic demand is putting pressure on traditional mobile services such as voice and SMS, company chairman Chang Xiaobing told the China Daily in an interview. However, the data business, supported by the growing popularity of smartphones, is growing quickly. "China Unicom has come to a point where it has to transform itself," Chang said. "We may face difficulties in the transition, but China Unicom has the confidence and the capability to overcome those."

Source: Telecom Paper.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:32:27 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Japanese cable operator Jupiter Telecommunications (J:Com) grew its customer base to approximately 3.72 million in October, up 3.5 percent year-on-year. Combined revenue generating units (RGUs) for cable television, internet access, and telephony services reached 7.50 million, up 6.8 percent from October 2011. Furthermore, the bundle ratio increased to 2.02 from 1.95 a year earlier. J:Com had 3.11 million cable TV subscribers, up 1.8 percent year-on-year. The company also had 1.95 million internet subscribers, up 8.7 percent and the number of telephony customers grew 12.4 percent to 2.44 million.

Source: Telecom Paper.

Friday, December 14, 2012 10:30:31 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, November 26, 2012

Zain Kuwait has announced that it has launched 4G services under the brand name Wiyana Connect 4G LTE. In a press release the company stated that the country’s first nationwide Long Term Evolution (LTE) offering is available for all compatible mobile phones, tablets, routers, hotspots and dongles. CEO Omar Alomar said: ‘We are very proud to launch the new service. This service is available for the first time nationwide.’ According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, rival cellco Kuwait Telecom Company (Viva) launched LTE services in December 2011, however coverage of that network is believed to be restricted to central areas.

Source: TeleGeography.

Monday, November 26, 2012 12:27:36 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

UK data volumes over UK mobile broadband have more than doubled over the past year, with an average of 246 MB of data consumed for every active SIM, according to the latest Infrastructure Report update from Ofcom. Mobile broadband coverage continues to improve. The number of UK premises that cannot receive a 3G signal (and are therefore in a 3G 'complete not-spot') has fallen to 0.9 percent from 1.2 percent, while the number of premises that can receive a 3G signal from all mobile operators has increased to 77 percent from 73 percent. Ofcom estimates that 0.3 percent of premises are in 'complete not-spots' (they have no 2G mobile coverage) while 6.1 percent of premises are in 'partial not-spots' (they are not served by all the operators). It also found that many households are using femto cells to improve in-home coverage, with over 207,000 femto cells deployed.

Source: Telecom Paper.

Monday, November 26, 2012 12:25:50 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Brazil telecom regulator Anatel on Friday ordered TIM Participacoes, the nation's No. 2 wireless carrier, to stop selling a flat-rate promotion plan with unlimited calls per day because of concerns about service quality.

It was the latest in a series of regulatory setbacks for the Brazilian unit of Telecom Italia. In July, Anatel banned TIM's sales in 19 states for nearly two weeks until the company presented an investment plan to improve service.

TIM started selling its "Infinity Day" promotion on Monday, allowing customers to make unlimited phone calls within the carrier's network for a flat rate of 0.50 real ($0.24) a day.

The plan could bring "potential instability" to the company's network and "hurt the quality of service for all TIM customers," Anatel said in a decision published on Brazil's official gazette.

TIM was not immediately available to comment on the regulator's decision. The company intended to sell the plan to prepaid customers on a promotional basis until Jan. 15.

TIM has 30 days to provide Anatel with a study on the impact of the plan on its network and to make the necessary adjustments to ensure its service meets the agency's quality standards.

Source: Reuters.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012 1:35:56 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

The Irish telecoms regulator has completed its auction of radio spectrum and raised EUR481.7 million (US$613 million) from the mobile networks, with commitments to pay up to EUR372.95 million (US$474.7 million) by 2030 when the licenses expire.

The auction awarded spectrum rights in the former GSM-only bands (900 MHz and 1800 MHz) and in the 800 MHz band (the so-called 'Digital Dividend') which became available on 24 October last following the switch-off of analogue broadcasting.

The spectrum is being provided in a technology-neutral manner.

This auction saw the release of 140 MHz of paired spectrum, more than doubling the 64.8 MHz of paired spectrum currently assigned in these bands.

Frequency Band

License Period

Hutchison 3G

Meteor

Telefonica O2

Vodafone

800Mhz

2013-2015

-

2 x 10Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

2015-2030

-

2 x 10Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

900Mhz

2013-2015

2 x 5Mhz

2 x5 Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

2015-2030

2x 5Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

1800Mhz

2013-2015

2 x 10Mhz

2 x 10Mhz

-

2 x 15Mhz

2015-2030

2 x 20Mhz

2 x 15Mhz

2 x 15Mhz

2 x 25Mhz

Upfront Payment

EUR51.14m

EUR144.78m

EUR124.93m

EUR160.85m

Total Spectrum Usage

EUR53.87m

EUR99.64m

EUR99.64m

EUR99.64m

Total

EUR854.64 million

 

Announcing the results of the auction, ComReg Chairperson, Alex Chisholm said: "The assignment of these spectrum rights by ComReg has been one of the most significant pieces of work undertaken by ComReg. It is a vital step that promotes competition and allows the next generation of advanced mobile services to be made available to Irish consumers and businesses from next year."

License holders must attain and maintain a minimum coverage of 70% of the population and to attain this coverage obligation within 3 years, while they may use spectrum rights in multiple bands to achieve the coverage targets, at least 50% of the coverage requirement (i.e. 35% of the population) must be met using spectrum rights in the 800 MHz, 900 MHz and/or 1800 MHz bands.

Source: Cellular News.

Europe | LTE | Mobile
Tuesday, November 20, 2012 1:33:00 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, November 16, 2012
The government has garnered just Rs 9,407 crore, less than a quarter of what it expected, as the much hyped second generation (2G) airwaves auctions evoked a tepid response from mobile phone companies, exacerbating concerns about the Centre's ability to meet its fiscal deficit target

Norway's Telenor and Videocon, which had lost pan-India permits when the Supreme Court quashed all permits issued by former telecoms minister A Raja, won back their licences in six circles each, and will shell out Rs 2,222 crore and Rs 4,018 crore respectively. Telenor emerged as the largest bidder in the auctions.

Source: The Economic Times.

Friday, November 16, 2012 1:36:28 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, November 15, 2012

Gambia Telecommunications Company (Gamtel) has reported a 4% year-on-year increase in fixed network revenues to GMD1. 450 billion (USD48 million) in full-year 2011, compared to GMD1.395 billion earned in 2010. Managing director Baboucarr Sanyang, presenting the fixed line telco’s annual activity report and financial statement to the National Assembly, announced that the growth in total turnover was attributed to yearly increases in international, interconnection and data revenue of GMD13 million, GMD32 million and GMD42 million, respectively. The MD’s report, published in the Daily Observer, added that the fixed division achieved a gross profit margin of 33% for the year. Sanyang also confirmed that there was an upgrade of international internet bandwidth from two STM-1s to three STM-1s, which increased the capacity of Gamtel’s network from 310Mbps to 465Mbps, plus back-up capacity of 14Mbps via satellite. Meanwhile in 2011 the company signed a Delegated Management Contract (DMC) with the Gambia Agency for Management of Public Works (GAMWORKS) for the refurbishment and upgrading of Gamtel sites and facilities in readiness for its next generation network (NGN) project.

The state-backed telco’s cellular arm, Gamcel, reported 2011 financial results separately, with general manager Almamy Kassama announcing total revenue of GMD1.127 billion, up by 48% from GMD761 million in 2010, with a gross profit margin of 20%. Gamcel has embarked on network expansion projects while its marketing department is focused on strategies aimed at adding value to Gamcel.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:17:59 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Orange Slovakia has disclosed its plans to reach a total of 633 municipalities with its 3G mobile network by the end of this year, up by 30 from the current total of 603 (and 137 cities already under the 3G footprint). Orange’s existing coverage reaches 78% of the population with HSPA+ (21Mbps) services, and a near-50% DC-HSPA+ (42Mbps) footprint.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:13:54 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

South African mobile giant Vodacom has tripled the number of Long Term Evolution (LTE)-enabled base stations on its network from just under 70 at launch in October 2012, to over 200 in Johannesburg. According to MyBroadband.co.za testing has now begun in Cape Town. Zunaid Dinath, Vodacom’s sales and distribution officer, added that the cellco has increased the number of LTE devices on sale at Vodacom World in Midrand and selected Vodacom outlets in Gauteng. LTE services are currently only available to contract customers, but will be made available to pre-paid subscribers in 2013.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:12:33 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

According to the latest statistics from the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the number of fixed and mobile telephone subscribers in the country increased to over 107.36 million at 30 September 2012 from 102.36 million three months earlier and 95.88 million at the end of 2011. GSM mobile operators accounted for 96.54%, or 103.65 million, of Nigeria’s total telephony user base at the end of the third quarter of 2012 (up from 90.56 million users nine months earlier), followed by CDMA mobile networks with 3.02%, or 3.24 million, (down from 4.6 million), while fixed and fixed-wireless operators claimed just 0.44%, or 474,345, of the total, compared to 719,406 users at end-2011. According to the NCC, the largest mobile operator by subscribers remains South Africa-based MTN, with around 45.64 million users on its GSM network at the end of September 2012, up 5.7% quarter-on-quarter and accounting for 42.7% of Nigeria’s total GSM and CDMA wireless subscribers.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:11:20 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Bharti Airtel has posted revenue for its fiscal second quarter ending 30 September of INR202.7 billion (USD3.7 billion), up by more than 17% year-on-year. The growth in sales comes on the back of an 11% increase in the company’s total consolidated subscriber base to 262.6 million, almost 60 million of which are in Africa. Bharti also revealed that its mobile data revenues in its home market of India soared 77% year-on-year. However, net income for the three months under review plunged 30% to INR7.2 billion as operating costs relating to network investment increased, and losses from the African division widened. The company has now posted declining net income for each of the last eleven quarters.

Commenting on the results, Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman & Managing Director of Bharti Airtel, said: ‘Despite a seasonally weak quarter, I am pleased to see that our overall revenue growth has sustained through diversified segments and geographies as well as the continuing healthy demand in data services. I am also happy to note that in India, the much needed market corrections in customer acquisition practices have been put in place by the operators. Our African operations continue to reflect sustained and steady growth on all major parameters of revenues, profitability and cash flow’.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:09:28 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

National telecoms regulator the Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) has published its latest market observatory report for the month of Shrawan, 2069 (15 July – 14 August, 2012) showing that the country’s fixed line user base continues to fall, standing at 839,067 connections, down from 850,607 at mid-April this year. Of the total, state owned Nepal Doorsanchar Company Limited (Nepal Telecom, or NT) reported a total of 629,801 (PSTN) and 129,126 (WiLL) connections, at mid-August, while the country’s smaller players lagged behind in terms of users, with United Telecom Limited reaching 71,395 fixed-wireless telephony customers, Nepal Satellite Telecom having 2,950 WiLL lines, Smart Telecom, 598 and STM with 5,197 – both PSTN.

In the mobile segment, at mid-August 2012 the total number of registered SIMs stood at 15.627 million, up from 14.498 million at mid-April. Market leader Spice Nepal Private, trading as Ncell, had 8.492 million GSM clients at that date, while NT had 7.135 million (including 6.304 million GSM and 830,172 CDMA users). Data published in the NTA’s Management Information System report shows that at that date overall teledensity (fixed and mobile) stood at 66.14% (up from 61.42% in April and 56.46% at mid-December 2011), with mobile accounting for the lion’s share – or 58.70% – of lines.

The NTA also said the total number of data and internet subscribers stood at 5.145 million at mid-August, up from 4.667 million in April, with the overwhelming majority (over 4.782 million) arising from GPRS mobile internet connections. The number of ADSL connections topped 88,058 for NT (up from 83,464), with cable modem, CDMA 1x and other (wireless, fibre-optic) reaching 17,981, 196,183 and 45,612 respectively. There were also 15,037 dial-up connections reported at the same date.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:08:35 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Telefonica Germany, which provides services under the O2 brand, has announced that it has begun offering VDSL access at download speeds of up to 50Mbps. Customers with an existing ADSL contract are able to book the new ‘Speed’ option for an additional EUR4.99 (USD6.4) a month. For the first three months, the monthly cost of the service for new customers will be EUR14.99. The 50Mbps option is offered over the VDSL network of fixed line incumbent Telekom Deutschland, and will be available to more than eleven million households across the country.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:06:44 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

America Movil’s (AM’s) domestic mobile subsidiary, Telcel, has reportedly inaugurated commercial Long Term Evolution (LTE) services, BNamericas reports. Telcel, which is Mexico’s largest cellco by subscribers, is understood to have made its 4G network available to customers in a total of nine cities at launch, with those being: Mexico City, Guadalajara, Monterrey, Queretaro, Puebla, Ciudad Juarez, Tijuana, Hermosillo and Merida. For now, LTE-based services are restricted to post-paid customers only, although AM CEO Daniel Hajj was cited as saying that pre-paid options will be offered in the future.

Six LTE-compatible handsets are being offered to those customers looking to take up the new service, including the Samsung Galaxy SIII LTE, while Telcel has noted that the iPhone 5 will be available from January 2013. Pricing for the 4G service ranges from MXN499 (USD38) per month for a 500MB usage allowance, rising to MXN899 for a 700MB allowance.

Mr Hajj is also cited as saying that approximately 35% of Telcel’s mobile subscriber base currently uses data services, broken down as 20% which access data via its 2G network and 15% which connect via the 3G infrastructure. Having noted that data usage had increased tenfold over the past three years, Telcel has said a similar growth rate is likely in the wake of its 4G launch, with Mr Hajj reportedly saying that the cellco expects between one and three million people to adopt 4G within a year.

Meanwhile, with Telcel reportedly set to invest around USD3.95 billion on network upgrades between 2012 and 2014, at least USD1 billion of which will be spent on 4G equipment, it has said that it aims to expand coverage to 26 cities covering 65% of the population by April 2013.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:05:26 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Hungarian market regulator the National Media and Telecommunications Authority (NMHH) says that the total number of mobile internet subscriptions climbed to 2.852 million at 30 September 2012, up a net 90,000 on the previous month. Of the total, the number of active subscriptions with data transfer in the period reached 2.168 million, up a net 72,000 on August, with users transmitting a total of 2.212 million GB of data in the period under review – down from 2.285 million GB in August. T-Mobile Hungary led the pack in the mobile internet segment with a market share of 46.36% at end-September, ahead of Telenor Hungary with 27.61% and Vodafone Hungary 26.04%.

Source: Telegeography.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 2:03:23 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Macau ended September with 1.53 million mobile subscribers, up from 1.51 million in August, according to figures from regulator DSRT. The number of 2G subscribers has been falling in line with the transition to 3G and comprised 6,991 2G postpaid subscribers and 209 2G prepaid users at end-September. The number of 3G postpaid subscribers totalled 554,715, up from 552,614, and the 3G prepaid base stood at 970,704, up from 951,545 a month earlier. However, Macau's fixed-line user base slipped to 162,668 from 163,065 from 163,366 fixed-line subscribers a month earlier. Of the total, 107,607 are residential lines and the remainder are commercial telephone lines. The number of internet subscribers grew to 142,920 from 142,004, and includes 769 dial-up users and 142,013 broadband customers.

Source: Telecompaper.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 1:53:19 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
Philippine mobile operator Smart Communications has linked its Manila cell sites via fibre optic cable. The operator has connected 100 percent of cell sites in metro Manila to the PLDT group's fibre infrastructure as part of its Fiber in the Loop (FITL) project. The operator also announced that it has made its LTE broadband service available in more cities across metro Manila. Some ten cities are now covered by LTE, the company said.


Source: Telecompaper.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 1:50:42 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
The mobile base in Bangladesh grew to 98.47 million in September from 95.53 million in August. Grameenphone led the market with 40.95 million customers, versus 39.80 million a month earlier, followed by Banglalink with 26.78 million subscribers, up from 25.74 million in August, according to figures from the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC). Robi Axiata grew its subscriber base to 20.80 million from 20.14 million and Airtel Bangladesh ended September with 6.89 million customers, compared with 6.78 million a month earlier. However, Citycell's subscriber base was flat at 1.68 million while Teletalk ended the month with 1.37 million customers, same as a month earlier.

Source: Telecompaper.

Thursday, November 15, 2012 1:48:20 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The European Union already has standard broadband available for the great majority of EU homes, 95.7%, over 200 million altogether. It is also now half-way towards the goal of 30Mbps access for all by 2020. Over 50% of EU homes – 105 million - already had NGA broadband available to them.

 

The gap is inevitably larger in rural areas, particularly where NGA is concerned. 78% of rural EU homes have access to standard broadband but only 12% - 5 million - have NGA available. Thus 35 million of the 40 million rural homes in Europe are waiting for NGA to arrive. Bringing it to them is likely to require considerable effort and investment.

 

As far as individual technologies are concerned, the research shows that DSL is by far the most important fixed line broadband technology in Europe today, with 92% coverage of households. Standard cable comes next with 42%. WiMAX has under 15% coverage.

 

Looking at NGA technologies, Docsis 3, which is also included in the standard cable figures, is most important with 37% coverage. VDSL, which is included in the DSL figures, is next at 21% and FTTP is available to just 12% of homes

 

As for mobile broadband, HSPA has rapidly grown to 95% coverage, ahead of DSL and with almost as many homes passed as all the standard broadband technologies combined. At the other end of the scale, LTE is still very new with less than 9% coverage.

 

Source: European Commission. Extracted from the executive summary of the report.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012 8:55:40 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

America Movil’s (AM’s) domestic mobile subsidiary, Telcel, has reportedly inaugurated commercial Long Term Evolution (LTE) services, BNamericas reports. Telcel, which is Mexico’s largest cellco by subscribers, is understood to have made its 4G network available to customers in a total of nine cities at launch, with those being: Mexico City, Guadalajara, Monterrey, Queretaro, Puebla, Ciudad Juarez, Tijuana, Hermosillo and Merida. For now, LTE-based services are restricted to post-paid customers only, although AM CEO Daniel Hajj was cited as saying that pre-paid options will be offered in the future.

Six LTE-compatible handsets are being offered to those customers looking to take up the new service, including the Samsung Galaxy SIII LTE, while Telcel has noted that the iPhone 5 will be available from January 2013. Pricing for the 4G service ranges from MXN499 (USD38) per month for a 500MB usage allowance, rising to MXN899 for a 700MB allowance.

Mr Hajj is also cited as saying that approximately 35% of Telcel’s mobile subscriber base currently uses data services, broken down as 20% which access data via its 2G network and 15% which connect via the 3G infrastructure. Having noted that data usage had increased tenfold over the past three years, Telcel has said a similar growth rate is likely in the wake of its 4G launch, with Mr Hajj reportedly saying that the cellco expects between one and three million people to adopt 4G within a year.

Meanwhile, with Telcel reportedly set to invest around USD3.95 billion on network upgrades between 2012 and 2014, at least USD1 billion of which will be spent on 4G equipment, it has said that it aims to expand coverage to 26 cities covering 65% of the population by April 2013.

Source: TeleGeography.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012 8:52:31 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
The European Commission has today decided to add another 120 MHz to the radio spectrum portfolio for 4G technologies, such as LTE (Long Term Evolution), around the 2 GHz band. This band is currently solely used for UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) wireless communications, known as 3G networks. The Decision makes it mandatory for Member States to open the relevant spectrum by 30 June 2014 at the latest, and lays down harmonised technical conditions to allow coexistence between different technologies. On this basis the EU will enjoy up to twice the amount of spectrum for high speed wireless broadband as in the United States, namely around 1000 MHz.

Source: European Commission.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012 8:50:46 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, November 08, 2012

Chinese cellco China Unicom has booked revenues of CNY185.192 billion (USD29.436 billion) for the nine months to 30 September 2012, up by 18.7% year-on-year. Of the total, CNY42.72 billion was attributed to Unicom’s burgeoning 3G business, up by 29.2% compared to the corresponding period of 2011. The cellco claimed 66.863 million 3G users, more than double the 30.230 million represented by Unicom in September 2011. ARPU for 3G users was CNY89.1, and average monthly data usage per customer was 143.4MB. Turnover from its GSM business however experienced a 6.2% drop on an annualised basis, falling to CNY50.39 billion. Meanwhile, Unicom’s fixed line operations saw a slight boost of 1.9% y-o-y to CNY62.443 billion, with non-voice revenues contributing 69.4% to the total, compared to 63.0% twelve months earlier.

Despite an increase in costs and expenses for the nine-month period of 18.3% to CNY177.93 billion, Unicom reported net profits of CNY5.45 billion (+29.4% y-o-y). Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) were CNY54.78 billion (+12.7%) with an EBITDA margin of 35.1%.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:52:14 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Pan-African mobile operator MTN Group has reported ‘satisfactory’ results for the three months ended 30 September 2012, underpinned by solid net subscriber gains – up 3.8% year-on-year to 182.7 million – driven in particular by growth in South Africa and Nigeria, two of its biggest markets. In its home market, it reported 4.1% y-o-y growth to 24.498 million, boosted by strong pre-paid user take-up, while in Nigeria it said customer numbers increased by 5.7% (on a net basis) to 45.640 million. In the wake of the strong performance, the Johannesburg-based carrier raised its guidance for net additions in the full year from 21.25 million to 23.70 million. MTN is active in a total of 22 African and Middle Eastern markets.

The group’s MTN Irancell unit continued to deliver a sound operational performance despite an increasingly challenging economic and political environment. The subsidiary expanded its base by 2.8% y-o-y to 39.382 million at end-September, it said, at which date it also had 230,000 WiMAX users. In other markets of note, MTN Ghana increased its subscriber base by 4.8% in the quarter to 11.270 million; MTN Syria added a net 115,000 users (+2.0%) in Q3 despite the ongoing civil unrest, for a total of 6.021 million; MTN in Yemen boosted its total by 5.4% to 4.445 million; and the group’s Zambian operation increased by 10.1% to 3.460 million.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:50:55 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Moldova’s National Regulatory Agency for Electronic Communications and Information Technology (ANRCETI) has set the terms for the implementation of mobile and fixed number portability (MNP and FNP) in the country. Under the plan, the centralised database (CDB) administrator and service providers will develop the technical and commercial conditions for number portability implementation, to be approved by ANRCETI before 25 December 2012. Fixed and mobile telephony operators will subsequently be required to sign contracts with the CDB administrator and make the required changes in their networks to enable the launch of MNP and FNP on 1 May 2013 and 31 July 2013, respectively.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:47:46 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

US telco AT&T Inc has reported consolidated revenues of USD31.46 billion for the three months ended 30 September 2012, a decrease of 0.1% year-on-year. Wireless sales accounted for the lion’s share of revenues in 3Q12, rising 4.5% to USD14.91 billion, while ‘data’ (broadband) revenues increased 6.9% y-o-y to USD7.98 billion. However, third-quarter ‘voice’ (wireline) revenue was down 10.8% to USD5.57 million, from USD6.24 million in 3Q11. Net income for 3Q12 increased 0.3% from USD3.62 billion to USD3.64 billion.

In operational terms, AT&T Wireless added 678,000 net new customers in the twelve-month period, for a total of 105.9 million at the end of September; this included gains in every customer category. Of these additions, 151,000 were post-paid subscribers and 77,000 were pre-paid. Of the remainder, 137,000 new connections were attributed to resellers and a further 313,000 subscriber accounts were classified as ‘connected devices’. Post-paid average revenue per user (ARPU) increased by 2.4% y-o-y to USD65.2 per month, representing the 15th consecutive quarterly rise, and the strongest increase in six quarters. The carrier sold 6.1 million smartphones in 3Q12, 1.3 million more than in 3Q11, with such devices representing 81% of post-paid handset sales. AT&T claims that its ARPU for smartphones is twice as high as that of non-smartphone subscribers. Further, more than 40% of AT&T’s post-paid smartphone user base possess a Long Term Evolution (LTE)-capable device.

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson commented: ‘We had another impressive quarter with strong earnings growth, record cash flows and solid returns to shareholders through dividends and share buybacks. In wireless, we had another excellent smartphone quarter, penetration of usage-based mobile data plans continues to climb, and our 4G LTE network build is ahead of schedule. And in wireline, our IP network continues to deliver strong gains in U-verse high speed internet connections, which helped drive an almost 10% increase in broadband data ARPU’.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:41:34 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

According to data published by Brazil’s Associacao Brasileira de Telecomunicacoes (Telebrasil), the country was home to a total of 83 million broadband accesses (fixed and mobile) at the end of September, up 58% or 30.5 million connections on the same time in 2011. Of the total, some 63.6 million people were accessing the internet via a mobile broadband connection, with a further 19.4 million using a fixed connection. The popularity of mobile internet access is booming, with Telebrasil noting that connections increased by 84% in the year to 30 September 2012, with 50.9 million Brazilian owning a 3G mobile phone and 12.7 million using a data terminal (modem/dongle) at that date. Further, the association notes that the uptake of smartphones is accelerating with numbers rising by 86% between September 2011 and 2012, including 30 million new 3G mobile connections. In the fixed broadband sphere, the country registered some 1.4 million net new users in the period under review, up 7.7% year-on-year. Telebrasil attributes a significant portion of the growth to the success of the country’s national broadband plan – Plano Nacional de Banda Larga – which it estimates accounted for 31.5% of all new fixed high speed accesses.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:39:56 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

GrameenPhone, the Bangladesh unit of Norway’s Telenor Group, has reported that it signed up 9.8 million GPRS/EDGE mobile internet users by the end of September 2012, up by around one million in three months, and up from 3.4 million just twelve months earlier – a year-on-year net increase of 6.4 million. The figures raised the proportion of its total user base accessing the web by 14 percentage points year-on-year to 24% in the same period. GrameenPhone has recently promoted internet usage on its GSM network with a special discount for first-time customers, plus specific targeting of user segments such as its ‘Internet Utshob’ campaign aimed at the youth market, as well as government partnerships including the distribution of wireless modems in schools across the country.

Total GSM customers reached 41.0 million at 30 September 2012, up from 39.3 million reported the previous quarter and 35.2 million in Q3 2011, helping drive revenue for the first nine months of the year up by 4.7% to BDT69.3 billion (USD835 million) and Q3 revenue up by 0.4% to BDT22.9 billion. EBITDA margin remained at 53% in 9M 2012, the same level as the corresponding period of 2011, although the margin dropped in 3Q12 to 52%, down from 58% in 2011’s third quarter. The cellco invested CAPEX of BDT10.4 billion in the first three quarters of 2012, with Q3 CAPEX reaching BDT2.9 billion, down from BDT4.5 billion in the same quarter a year earlier.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:38:26 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Mobile operator MTS Belarus has announced that the number of people signed up to its 3G mobile internet services increased by 12% in the three months ended 30 September 2012 to more than 800,000; the cellco closed out June 2012 with around 715,000 3G users. MTS is driving uptake for mobile broadband by continuing efforts to modernise its network. It now claims to cover the entire territory of the Republic with a total of 1,698 base transceiver stations (BTS), of which half are able to support dual-carrier HSPA+ with maximum download speeds of 42Mbps. In the third quarter the operator added 3G in a number of new locations in the Brest region (Baranovichi), Shavrova (Vitebsk), Grodno and Lida, Neman (Minsk), Borisov (Minsk region) and in parts of Mogilev.

In a separate development, MTS Belarus says it hopes to complete the deployment of its Ethernet network in the Serebryanka residential quarter in Minsk by 15 November 2012. Upon completion, customers signing up to its ‘Household Connect’ tariff plans will be able to get a 5Mbps (maximum) connection free for the first month. MTS already offers the Ethernet service in the Chizhovka residential quarter in the capital.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:36:56 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Solavei, a social network and commercial platform provider, has launched a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) service in Puerto Rico over the network of T-Mobile, in a partnership with the cellular operator which also covers the US. Solavei’s MVNO offering is based on an unlimited service plan costing USD49 a month, including national voice, text and data for mobile phone users based in Puerto Rico.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:35:38 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
Airtel Nigeria, the local mobile unit of Indian telecoms group Bharti Airtel, has expanded coverage of its 3.5G wireless network in Oyo State, enabling the cellco’s subscribers in the region to access mobile broadband at higher speeds, Vanguard reports. ‘Oyo State is central to the operations of Airtel, and in our quest to recreate a uniquely wholesome telecoms experience in line with our vision of becoming the most loved brand in the daily lives of Nigerians, we are renewing our contract with the Oyo people by empowering them to succeed through our ‘3.75G’ network footprints, innovative offerings, pocket-friendly value propositions and customer-focused initiatives,’ Airtel Nigeria’s COO and executive director, Deepak Srivastava, said at a ceremony in Oyo State capital Ibadan to re-launch the Airtel brand. In February 2012 Airtel announced that it had boosted the maximum download speed available across its third-generation network to 42Mbps, following the implementation of Dual Carrier HSPA+ (DC-HSPA+) technology. At that date, the network was available in parts of all 36 states, including the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja, notes TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:34:22 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Incumbent operator Orange Poland (previously known as Telekomunikacja Polska, TP) has booked a 5.5% year-on-year decline in revenues for Q3 2012 to PLN3.473 billion (USD1.111 billion), attributed to adverse macroeconomic factors and intense price competition in the mobile segment. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) were PLN1.323 billion, with an EBITDA margin of 38.1% down by 5.7% and 0.1 percentage points respectively compared to the year-ago period. Net income for the quarter was PLN307 million, dropping 18.6% from PLN377 million a year earlier.

Orange noted that the introduction of unlimited voice and SMS offers in Q2 2012 had led to a decline in mobile ARPU, adding that the ‘price war’ would have a ‘negative impact… on the value of the entire market.’ Blended ARPU fell by PLN2 quarter-on-quarter, with post-paid ARPU falling by PLN3.1 and pre-paid dropping PLN0.9. Mobile subscriptions edged up to 14.758 million from 14.757 million in Q2 2012.

Fixed telephony subscriptions continued to decline, falling by 2.5% q-o-q to 5.195 million, whilst broadband accesses also slumped, with subscriptions falling by 0.3% to 2.338 million compared to the preceding quarter. Triple-play packages continued to see strong growth, noting a 26.5% increase in users to 191,000.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:32:13 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Brazilian telco Oi SA, the entity formed through the restructuring of Telemar Participacoes’ former operating divisions Brasil Telecom, Tele Norte Leste Participacoes, Coari Participacoes and Telemar Norte Leste, has extended the operational footprint of its national broadband plan – Plano Nacional de Banda Larga (PNBL) – to 2,005 municipalities. Oi SA, which markets its internet offering under the Oi Velox banner, reached its latest milestone through the deployment of services to an additional 113 cities, and now targets coverage of 4,800 municipalities by the end of 2014. The carrier added that around 40% of cities covered are located in the north and northwest of Brazil. In total, Oi Velox is now available in 24 states across the country, excluding the Federal District, and offers users a low-cost 1Mbps internet service for BRL35 (USD17.2) per month.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:27:07 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
Mobile Telephony of Serbia (MTS), the wireless arm of fixed line incumbent Telekom Srbija, has upgraded its 3G infrastructure to HSPA+, the company announced yesterday. The boosted network will deliver download speeds of more than 10Mbps to end users, with potential upload speeds of 3Mbps. MTS’s 3G network covers 75% of the population including all major cities, towns, and roads. MTS added that the upgrade would ease the transition to 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) in the future.

Source: TeleGeography.

Thursday, November 08, 2012 2:25:46 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |