Asia Archives — Page 7 of 11


BSNL, the former incumbent fixed line and mobile carrier in India, is finalizing a $4.5-4.7 billion deal with Ericsson and Nokia Siemens to deploy 45.5 million GSM lines. Ericsson’s share of this deal is about $2.
Dr. Harsha de Silva participated in the LIRNE.NET and WDR expert meeting entitled “Wireless Opportunities and Solutions: A Regulatory Perspective” held in Montevideo, Uruguay during 7-9 March 2007. He made a presentation during the first session entitled “Getting a clearer picture: Demand side ICT data collection”, sharing with the audience some of the findings and the methodology used in LIRNEasia’s recently completed research on teleuse@BOP. During the discussion sessions and on the sidelines of the conference he engaged substantially with the DIRSI researchers planning to replicate the Asian study in Latin America.
Data and 3G may not be a priority in Asia: discuss. No, we’re not referring to Japan, Korea or Hong Kong. Not even China. This time we’re looking at the area’s so-called emerging markets – markets like Indonesia where the market-leading operator Telkomsel and third-ranked player Excelcom launched 3G services in early September. Or the Philippines, where rival operators Globe and Smartcom have been offering 3G for a slightly longer period.
LIRNEasia, in association with the TeNeT Group and RTBI of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras, is organizing the second CPRsouth conference, in Chennai, India from December 15-17, 2007. The conference aims to provide a forum for senior, junior and mid-career scholars to meet face-to-face and exchange ideas, establish networking opportunities and improve the quality of their scholarly work, in order to facilitate the long-term objective of fostering the next generation of active scholars and in-situ experts capable of contributing to ICT policy and regulatory reform in the region. Please check the Call for Abstracts and Young Scholar Awards to see how you may participate in this event and join an emerging community of scholars committed to improving the lives of people in Asia through information and communication technology. Visit the CPRsouth2 conference page for more information.
The e-readiness rankings are relatively well regarded and do not contain absurdities such as Zimbabwe being ahead of India. The latest rankings are out and show India and the Philippines tied for 54th place (a one-place drop for India); Sri Lanka at 61 (dropping two places); and Pakistan at 63 (up four places and likely to catch up with Sri Lanka soon). Indonesia, another country of focus for LIRNEasia, has slipped 5 places to 67. Zimbabwe, the country that leads all of South Asia according to the ITU, is not in the top- 70 that is provided. Nigeria, on the other hand, is just behind Sri Lanka, at 62.
WorldSpace, LIRNEasia’s partner in the last-mile hazard information project, is promoting a satellite-radio-based mechanism for point-to-multipoint distribution of educational content such as readings and slides. The link below provides a complete description. The excerpt below includes description of an ongoing project in Sri Lanka (not involving LIRNEasia) and the general conclusions drawn by the author, Dr S Rangarajan, a good friend of LIRNEasia and Sri Lanka: Online Journal of Space Communication: An example of a CLASS network that is set up nationwide is the Sri Lankan Network for e-Health and Alerts (SNeHA). Medical professionals in the remote district centers use this network for continuing medical education, to update their knowledge and pass better health care to their patients.
International consulting firm, Oxford Analytica (www.oxan.com) based in Oxford University and draws on a network of over 1,000 senior faculty members at Oxford and other major universities and research institutions around the world reported on Lirneasia’s “Telecoms on a Shoestrings” survey outcomes in its Asia-Pacific Daily Briefs on April 18th.   OA’s existing clients include over 35 governments, major international institutions, and over 160 of the world’s leading multinational corporations and financial institutions. See http://www.
Hutch’s entry into Indonesia’s mobile market as the 5th significant operator has started putting downward pressure on mobile calling prices, as I had predicted in my Oped piece Lower mobile prices: Through competition or profit regulation? in January of 2007. It is too early to call it a “price war” as the article below does, but the signs that prices are coming down is evident. Indonesia’s mobile retail prices are some of the highest in Asia and there is enough room for the prices to drop further. Currently, Hutch’s competitors are reacting by issuing promotions to match the new entrant’s offering, but this does not per se signify a permanent cut in prices.

nextbillion.net

Posted on March 28, 2007  /  1 Comments

While development aid and political reform are essential components in poverty eradication, equally important are business models that would engage low-income communities as producers and consumers in their own robust economies. Successful business models–inherently versatile, innovative, and driven by the profit motive–can sometimes tackle development challenges more quickly and effectively than government and aid mechanisms, and are the focus of NextBillion.net. Go to nextbillion.net NextBillion.
Sonal Desai | CXOToday.com Mumbai, Mar 27, 2007: Mobile penetration will penetrate the homes of bottom or pyramid (BOP) families in India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, a study instituted by LIRNEasia has found. Titled, “Teleuse on a Shoestring- A Study of the Financially Constrained in Asia,” it interviewed and maintained diaries of respondents from Thailand and Philippines besides the above mentioned countries. A C Nielsen conducted the fieldwork. International Development Research Center (IDRC), Canada funded the research.
Most Indonesians access the Internet primarily using fixed wireline infrastructure, mostly dialup. Because of lack of competition in the fixed line sector due to various reasons fixed line growth has been stagnant which has also affected Internet growth in the country. Not only are no new lines being added to bring more homes online, the inadequate backbone infrastructure in large swathe of the country makes deployment of broadband services unviable even if incumbent’s local loop bottleneck could be bypassed. However, yesterday’s Wall Street Journal (March 15, 2007) seems to suggest that high speed 3G wireless technology like HSDPA can bring broadband on a large scale to Indonesians. It (misleadingly) implies that since HSDPA is merely a software upgrade to 3G networks it will not require any new major telecom infrastructure investment in Indonesia.

Choices: Calls or gold?

Posted on March 10, 2007  /  0 Comments

By Rohan Samarajiva  LBO >> Choices : Priceless Link       08 March 2007 08:26:29 http://www.lbo.lk/fullstory.php?newsID=2020236857&no_view=1&SEARCH_TERM=24    March 08 (LBO) – Indonesia, like Sri Lanka, sends its women to foreign lands to work as housemaids.
Rohan Samarajiva Information Technologies and International Development (ITID) – MIT Press, Winter 2006, Vol. 3, No. 2, Pages 57-71 Abstract: Wireless technologies play an enormously important role in extending access to voice and data communications by hitherto excluded groups in society, especially in the world’s most populated region and now the largest mobile market, the Asia-Pacific. The present rates of growth and levels of connectivity could not have been achieved without wireless in the access networks, for mobile as well as for fixed, and in the backbone networks. But the solution is not simply wireless; it is wireless combined with new investment; it is wireless combined with other inputs and systems.

The next billion is from Asia and Africa

Posted on February 15, 2007  /  1 Comments

Another story that reinforces our emphasis on the emerging Asia-Pacific and the Bottom of the Pyramid: LANKA BUSINESS ONLINE – LBO Making affordable phones and targeting consumers with smaller budgets have now become priorities for the largest companies in the sector who were all present at this week’s 3GSM trade show in Barcelona. “There are between 2.5 and 2.8 billion people who have a mobile phone: the next billion will come from the high-growth market,” said David Taylor, strategy director for Motorola. The areas representing the most opportunity are Asia, Africa and the Middle East, he said.
The World Dialogue on Regulation (WDR) Expert Forum on Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Sector and Regulatory Performance Indicators will be held from March 2-3, 2007 at the Changi Village Hotel, Singapore. The event is organized by the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (ISEAS), in partnership with LIRNEasia and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) of Canada. The forum will bring together National Regulatory Agencies (NRAs), National Statistical Organizations (NSOs) and leading operators from the SAARC and ASEAN countries, and will focus on assessing telecommunications regulatory performance and establishing a sustainable system for measuring and benchmarking ICT sector indicators in developing Asia. For more information about this event, email asia@lirne.net
Nokia, which had a few bad years, appears to be making a comeback on the shoulders of exploding markets in the Asia Pacific.   LIRNEasia research shows that there is plenty of room for market expansion in the Asia Pacific, especially at the bottom of the pyramid.  If Nokia and other equipment suppliers address this market proactively, they can have many more good years.   Nokia Net Up 19%, Topping Estimates – New York Times Nokia, which is based in Espoo, Finland, shipped a record 106 million units in the quarter, up 26 percent from a year earlier and 19 percent from the third quarter. Nokia said its fourth-quarter market share was unchanged from 36 percent in the third quarter and up from 34 percent a year earlier, led by gains in all regions except North America.