LIRNEasia is a regional ICT policy and regulation think tank active across the Asia Pacific

Monthly Archives: September, 2009

WiMAX still in the game in the US?

Many were counting WiMAX out, but it appears that it has one last chance with the Sprint experiment. Through Clearwire, an affiliated company in which Sprint owns a 51 percent stake, Sprint is now offering the faster data service on laptops in Baltimore, Portland, Ore., and other cities for a total population of eight million […]

Dark side of regulation in America

Developed countries are generally perceived to be the gardens of best practices. Most of these countries’ lawmakers and lawbreakers (Including the diplomats and consultants)  frequently lecture us on how to do the right thing. But we hardly know about their dirty laundry. Mitchell Lazarus unfolds the regulatory dark side in the USA. The technical rules that deal with mature products are relatively general. But the […]

Sweden to charge spectrum on usage

Hoarding is bad and spectrum is a limited resource. Therefore, the Swedish regulator will gradually implement a new model for spectrum charges that will penalise the operators who have not maximised the use of their radio spectrum. The new model for charges is technology-neutral and will be implemented gradually over the course of several years […]

Power to overpower telecoms profit

Mobile base station electricity costs could rise by nearly 55% over the next five years unless operators address network inefficiencies and reduce reliance on non-renewable energy resources, according to a new report from Juniper Research. Its author, Dr Windsor Holden, said: “Operators in Africa and Asia who continue to rely on diesel for off-grid generators will […]

UK mobile broadband providers deliver 25% of advertised speeds

Few months back I posted On Her Majesty’s (Fraudband) Service suggesting how the British ISPs deceive in terms of advertised and delivered speed. New research by broadband comparison site Broadband-Expert has revealed that, on average, UK mobile broadband providers are delivering just 24% of advertised download speeds to consumers who sign up for their mobile […]

Bangladesh again blocks FDI in telecoms

Foreign investors, including non-resident Bangladeshi citizens, have been again declared persona non grata in Bangladesh’s crumbling international telecoms business.The regulator has invited public consultation and clause 6.01 of the proposed IGW, ICX and IIG licensing guidelines explicitly forbids any form of offshore investment. The nine-month old political government is keen to build “Digital Bangladesh.” But its […]

Electronics draining 15% of household electricity?

LIRNEasia has from the beginning seen the value of looking at all infrastructures, and indeed looking at their inter-relationships. Given their places on the adoption curves, we do not believe that electronics can consume 15% of electricity at the BOP in emerging countries, but given the long gestation times of energy projects and reforms, it […]

India mulls Internet telephony ban

India’s security agencies have recommended a ban on international Internet telephony until a system to trace the calls is in place, officials said, the latest move to plug security loopholes after the Mumbai attacks. India fears that militant groups operating from overseas could use Internet telephony to bypass security systems during the planning and execution […]

Verizon gives up on voice over copper

India’s MTNL and BSNL have been losing fixed subscriptions for years; Sri Lanka joined the club recently. Now we see the heirs to AT&T throwing in the towel. I guess it was like this when the railways replaced the canals. How long will it take for policy makers in emerging Asia to see where the […]

LIRNEasia research cited in presentation to U.S. Congress

LIRNEasia’s 2005 research on India’s Universal Service Obligation (USO) policy, conducted by Payal Malik and Harsha de Silva, has been cited in a presentation  to the US House of Representatives, in March 2009. The paper presented, entitled, “Using Competitive Bidding to Reform the Universal Service High Cost Fund”, can be downloaded here. As a policy-oriented […]

Broadband needs both chicken and the egg

Mobile is the most logical vehicle to deliver affordable broadband. Ovum warns the success or failure of mobile broadband in an emerging market may still be outside an operator’s control. Besides competition, the costs of fuel supplies to remote base stations or international connectivity must be taken seriously in the business plan. “Governments have a […]

Bahrain regulator is making history

This is the telecoms profile of Bahrain. The tiny Gulf state’s regulator has penalized the incumbent for refusing competitors accessing its international gateway, according to Reuters. Bahrain Telecommunications Company – like any other incumbent – is claiming innocence. The fact remains that if Batelco doesn’t pay within 30 days, the multimillion dollars penalty jumps upward. The […]

G’day, mate! Get separated or else…

It has already happened in the UK and New Zealand. Now Telstra has been asked to voluntarily separate its wholesale and retail arms. Otherwise, the Australian government will do the amputation – with or without anesthesia. The incumbent is, predictably, grumbling about it. Ovum has urged the government to play it right. It will not […]

IDRC features LIRNEasia Lead Economist in its annual report

idrc AR excerpt harsha

Lead Economist, Harsha de Silva and the AgInfo work that he has been leading at LIRNEasia has been featured in the International Development Research Centre’s (IDRC) 2008-2009 Annual Report. Read the full feature here (page 16)

Government in the age of Internet

A search is on for the right metaphor. What is the new role for government — a platform? a vending machine, into which we put money to extract services? a facilitator? And what, indeed, is the new role for us — the ones we’ve been waiting for? That is the closing para of an intriguing […]


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