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Monthly Archives: February, 2010

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Mobile 2.0 research findings to be disseminated in Delhi, Dhaka and Bangkok

We now have evidence to support the claim that those at the “Bottom of the Pyramid” (and therefore, the majority of people in the developing world) are likely to enter the world of knowledge and convenience promised by the Internet through the path opened by the rapidly increasing capabilities of mobile networks and user devices. […]

Adding mobile to the retail experience

Now with smartphones ascendant in the developed market economies, retailers are beginning to think about how use the multiple capabilities of the handsets to enhance the shopping experience. The main way they plan to do it is by turning people’s mobile phones into information displays and ordering devices. Can’t find the flour at the grocery […]

Why Haiti’s Cellphone Networks Failed

The earthquake has revealed Haiti’s lack of robust civil infrastructure, as well as the importance of international connectivity. The catastrophe also highlights the failure of Haiti’s cellular phone infrastructure. IEEE Spectrum magazine has interviewed via e-mail a Haitian engineer, Charles-Edouard Denis, who helped build Haiti’s first cellphone company, Haitel, and who describes the impact of […]

From Berlusconi’s Italy, a threat to us all

An Italian judge has held three Google executives responsible for the content of a site picked up and made accessible through Google. This is a threat to us all. 20 hrs of video are uploaded on to Google every hour, so if this ruling stands, Google will have to employ increasingly large numbers of people […]

India announces 3G auctions: but are all the ducks lined up?

Despite the fact that not all the frequencies have been cleared, India has announced the 3G auctions will be held in April. The original date was January 2009. Perhaps the driving force was the government’s need for money, rather than the conditions being right. India’s long-delayed auction of third-generation (3G) mobile phone bandwidth will be […]

Gurstein makes the case for telecenters

In an interesting post, that we recommend you read in full, Micheal Gurstein makes the case for telecenters despite the Nenasala debacle of the ICT Agency of Sri Lanka. Here is his key question: Or to put the question another way—what do we lose if we (or rural Sri Lankans) only have mobile communications with […]

Not my wish list, but as good a starting point as any in thinking about the next handsets

This is definitely not the appropriate set of new features that we need at the Bottom of the Pyramid in emerging Asia and elsewhere. Voice commands, greater convenience in reading/viewing, more location-sensitivity, etc. would be among mine. Of course we could also consider what the surveys say about flashlights and radios. But the most important […]

On the benefits of services trade

Services trade, especially mode 1 services trade where the buyer remains in the buyer’s country and the seller remains in the seller’s country, is critical to the development of emerging economies. India has been one of the greatest beneficiaries of liberalized trade, but the NYT article below shows that the US is also a clear […]

5 billion USD for Zain, African foothold (finally) for Bharti, and budget telecom network model for African consumers?

One way business models and innovations travel is through mergers and acquisitions. We have been waiting to see more African consumers benefit from the low prices and greater connectivity afforded by the Budget Telecom Network Model. Finally it looks like a big Indian telecom operator has got a foothold in Africa, with the transfer of […]

How mobile handsets are doing

A story on the Barcelona GSM World conference had this interesting summary on the state of the handset market. With our focus on infrastructure we have not written much about handsets over the years, but it’s becoming difficult, especially in the context of the Mobile 2.0 narrative. As I said in a recent interview with […]

Quo warranto, TRC?

Following the appointment of Director of Information (or Propaganda) as part-time Director General of Telecom, I have been getting a lot of calls asking about Internet censorship, prohibition of Face Book, and licensing of news websites. While I do believe that (a) the Director of Information is on the face unqualified to serve as DGT, […]

WiFi makes the bus quiet and the students better behaved

Back in 2004, LIRNEasia got on the WiFi bandwagon. Ours was one of the first WiFi offices in Colombo (we had trouble getting suppliers who knew what they were doing) and we installed WiFi temporarily at the Mount Lavinia Hotel for our launch conference. One of the unexpected results was that it caused people to […]

Pakistan Competition Commission appears to have mobile telcos on the ropes

It started with something innocuous. Within a very short period of around a week all the mobile operators in Pakistan announced they would charge 10 Paise for balance inquiries. The Competition Commission of Pakistan naturally initiated an inquiry. The mobile operators said there was no price fixing and that this move was intended to reduce […]

T@BOP3 findings published in Nokia’s Expanding Horizons

Findings from LIRNEasia’s Teleuse@BOP3 study have been cited in the latest issue of Nokia’s Expanding Horizons magazine. The article discusses the vast potential mobile phones have for providing those on the lower-incomes or the bottom of the pyramid, access to the internet for the first time. Read the full article here. Excerpt below: According to […]

A business model nudge at 1 gigabit a second

Google has announced that it will be rolling out superfast broadband as demonstration projects. “Google, indeed, appears to be playing a chess game,” said David B. Yoffie, a professor at the Harvard Business School. “If they can create an even mildly credible commitment to offer superfast broadband to the home, it could strike fear in […]

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