Even Udurawana, the local version of the legendary not-so-bright Sardarji, will not let it go without having a hearty laugh at the expense of new CDMA laws of Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC). Imposed few weeks back, they specify CDMA phones can be used only at the address it is issued to. (CDMA technology is used in Sri Lanka for fixed wireless and not mobile) How on earth a CDMA phone can be restricted to one address, asks Udurawana, when you sometimes even have to climb to your neighbour’s wall to receive signals. We hope the Sri Lanka rural users who have faced similar problems would readily empathise. (We hear once the mother-in-law of a former Director General of TRC too had to take her phone to a particular spot at a paddy field to catch signals) Mr.
This is from Lankadeepa online. It quotes Prime Minster Ratnasiri Wickramanayake saying one reason of restricting CMDA phones to be used only in one address (registered one) is to prevent the loss of government revenue from international traffic. He was responding to a query by Chief Opposition Whip Joseph Michael Perera MP at the parliament. Sri Lanka uses CDMA technology for fixed connections but with signals available anywhere within local loop, or if not been blocked by the operator even outside, it can be converted to a ‘mobile’. Given the distinct sharing behaviour we have seen at BOP, many may use their CDMAs in multiple locations.
The simmering tension over spectrum allocation among Indian telecom companies has erupted into a public spat with warring mobile phone operators leaving no stone unturned in their battle to acquire more air waves. The fight is so intense that Vodafone chief executive Arun Sarin too jumped in, dashing off letters to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and communications minister A Raja, complaining against the stiffer spectrum allocation norms proposed by the Telecommunication Engineering Centre, an arm of the department of telecommunications. Reliance Communications chief Anil Ambani, whose company uses CDMA technology, too wrote to the Prime Minister. He accused some “large GSM players”, a reference to Vodafone and Sunil Mittal’s Bharti Telecom, of spreading “misleading and false propaganda” to block fresh competition in telecom, hoard spectrum and indulge in “anti-consumer practices like cartelisation”. Read the full story in ‘The Times of India’ Other related stories: Anil Ambani takes telecom rivals to PM – Hindustan Times Telcos sweat under spectrum deadlock – Business Standard Telecom tussle engulfs all major players, Ambani writes to PM – The Indian Express quoating PTI
Sri Lanka: Cutting it Mobile phone use is taking off in Sri Lanka – though not, perhaps, in ways that service operators might have hoped. FROM THE ECONOMIST INTELLIGENCE UNIT In the world’s poorer countries, the purchase of a mobile phone has become increasingly affordable. Using it, however, can still be a struggle. Low-income mobile phone owners in Sri Lanka are getting around this problem with a novel method for keeping costs down. Known as ring cutting, mobile phone subscribers rely on ring tones to communicate with others, rather than actually staying on the line to talk.
As part of a special review of ICT policy in Indonesia, e-Indonesia, the Indonesian ICT monthly magazine, interviewed a number of key stakeholders including the Minister Sofyan Djalil, Commissioners from BRTI, the regulatory body, civil society group, industry reps and ICT experts. LIRNEasia researcher, Divakar Goswami, was also interviewed. The interview is featured in the online edition here. The interview is in bahasa. The English text of the interview is below: 1.
(Associated Press via NewsEdge) Cellular phone subscribers rose in India by a record 6.6 million in October, keeping the country’s place as the world’s fastest-growing mobile phone market, according to data released over the weekend. Subscribers for the GSM network grew by 4.7 million in September, while the number of mobile phone subscribers using CDMA technology increased by 1.9 million.
Qualcomm has come under some pressure recently when Reliance, with one of the fastest growing CDMA-based networks in the world based on Qualcomm’s patented technology, announced that it would provide mobile service using GSM technology and criticised Qualcomm’s high royalty and licensing fees. The inference was that Qualcomm’s fees were resulting in higher costs for handsets which is preventing Reliance from offering affordable service to low-income subscribers. Qualcomm claims that CDMA handset prices in India were already some of the lowest in the world and that royalty was only about $2 per handset. It further argues that Reliance’s move into GSM has to do with flawed spectrum policy of the Indian Telecom Ministry (DoT) that provides more than twice the spectrum to GSM operators compared to CDMA operators like Reliance. This is because according to Qualcomm, GSM technology allows only a finite number of subscribers in a cell whereas the CDMA technology on the other hand poses no such restrictions.
:: Daily Mirror – FINANCIAL TIMES :: Services Sector The Services sector maintained its importance in the economy, recorded a 5.9 per cent growth and contributed 53 per cent to overall economic growth in the fourth quarter of 2005. This growth was largely driven by the performance in the post and telecommunications, domestic trade and financial services sub sectors. Of these sectors, the Transport, storage and telecommunication sector expanded by 11.8 per cent during this period.
Suntel to invest Rs. 8 b for countrywide CDMA push Plans to roll out low cost telephone service in Jaffna soon By Poornima Weerasekara (Daily Mirror, 1 March 2006) Suntel yesterday unveiling its roadmap for the next three years announced their plans to invest Rs. 8 billion to expand the CDMA network island wide. “The coverage of our 155 base stations is better and wider than most of the mobile operators today,” Suntel Managing Director Jerry Huxtable said. “We have plans to build about 40 base stations by the middle of the year, with plans to construct another 50-60 base stations in the 2nd quarter,” he added.