Every year Nokia conducts the telecom equivalent of the Economist’s “Big Mac” study; it compares the total costs of using an identical basket of services over a mobile phone in multiple emerging economies. It used to cover 77 countries, but now they’ve pared it down to 50 major emerging economies.
If only the voice and SMS services are counted (plus 1/36th of the cost of the cheapest Nokia phone in that market), Bangladesh is the winner. A Bangladeshi user will pay only USD 1.91/month as against the average of USD 11.47. Brazil continues to be the most expensive, with a user having to pay 23 times what a BD user pays: USD 43.69.
When the Internet premium is added (a modest additional amount of Internet use from the mobile handset), Sri Lanka pulls ahead, at USD 2.91 (as against USD 3.31 for Bangladesh). The worst performance in this comparison comes from Morocco, where a user would pay 57 times what is paid in Sri Lanka: USD 52.14.
The Internet premium is not in the mounted slide. We will get that posted in a few days.