Indonesia Archives — Page 2 of 9 — LIRNEasia


I should not have been surprised, but I was. In the course of the Asia Pacific Summit session that I was moderating the Chief Strategy Officer of Indosat, Prashant Gokarn, said that they are no longer keeping 30% of earnings from apps, but giving pretty much everything to the developers. We can make our money on data, he said. I asked, is this just you? Supun Weerasinghe, Chief Stategy Officer at Axiata, said, no.
On 27th of February, I will be moderating a panel discussion following key notes by Chairman BTRC Sunil Kanti Bose and Minister of ICT Indonesia Titaful Sembiring. Should prove intersting. Asia Pacific Regional Summit 2013 Leveraging the New Mobile Horizon – Connecting Asia through Mobile 09:00 – 12:30, Wednesday 27 February 2013, Auditorium 1, Hall 8.0, Fira Gran Via, Barcelona 09:00 – 09:05 WELCOME AND INTRODUCTION Irene Ng, Head of Asia, GSMA SESSION 1: DEVELOPING ASIA PACIFIC 09:05 – 09:45 KEYNOTES Preparing for a new age of connectivity in Bangladesh Sunil Kanti Bose, Chairman, BTRC Driving innovation in ICT throughout Indonesia to support the country’s economic growth H.E.
CPRsouth seeks to encourage evidence-based interventions by members. It was a happy coincidence that an op-ed by a paper-giver at CPRsouth7 appeared in print while she was at the conference in Mauritius. She had written it up based on the paper delivered there: The diagram shows the percentage increase from 2009 to 2010 in the number of Facebook users among the top five countries on Facebook and the largest increase was recorded in Indonesia (793 percent). Using web analytics, it was found that Facebook was a popular upstream site that online users visited prior to their visit to official government websites. Over 70 percent of Facebook users in Indonesia access the social media site through their mobile phones (Facebook, 2011).

Facebook = Internet?

Posted on May 17, 2012  /  2 Comments

Few months back, our COO Helani Galpaya was out in the field in Indonesia, doing qualitative interviews with BOP teleusers. She picked up an odd response pattern: negative answers to questions about Internet use that would lead us to conclude the respondent was not an Internet user but claims that they were using Facebook on the mobile. So it seemed that in their minds, the Internet did not exist; only Facebook. This is the gist of the argument in Wired: Today, after just eight years in existence, Facebook now has more than 750 million users all by itself. At that astonishing rate of growth, the company is on track to accomplish much more than just a multibillion-dollar IPO.
LIRNEasia was unhappy with the ITU’s practice of reporting the prices of telecom services on the basis of a three-minute call. From 2006, we worked on popularizing the OECD basket methodology. We started becoming increasingly unhappy about the accuracy of the method because of the widespread use of discounts. At the same time, the ITU adopted the basket method and started reporting prices on that basis. We declared victory and stopped price benchmarking for voice calls.
The ICT Development Index (IDI) rankings by the ITU are out. Vietnam, a high performer on all composite ICT rankings, has leaped forward from 91st place to 81st place, in a rare 10-place advance. In South Asia, Bhutan advanced four places to 119th; Nepal by three places to 134th; and India and Sri Lanka advance by one place to 116th and 105th respectively. Pakistan and Bangladesh drop two places each to 123rd and 137th, respectively. Maldives, the leader among the South Asian countries, drops one place to settle at 67th place.
We know, from our experience with teleuse@BOP surveys, that getting an accurate fix on levels of income and assets (poverty) is not easy. An experiment in Indonesia suggests that asking the village to decide is superior, because it is almost as accurate as the standard method which uses household assets and generates greater buy-in (less complaints). One thing I did not get from the writeup was relative cost. Convening a community meeting is not costless. Neither is the asset-based method.
The World Economic Forum has issued its Global Information Technology Report which includes the NRI rankings. I find the sub indices always more instructive but for now, only the top line aggregate rankings are discussed. The big winner, among the countries LIRNEasia works in and the WEF covers, is Indonesia, advancing from 67th place in 2009-10 to 53rd place in 2010-11, a massive jump of 14 places. Sri Lanka has advanced six places from 72nd to 66th. Bangladesh advances three places to 115th, from 118th.
The AT Kearney Global Services Location Index for 2011 is out. I seem to have missed the 2010 report, so comparing with 2009, which I did do a post on. India is still number 1 and China is number 2. No change. Thailand has slipped to 7 from 4, overtaken by Indonesia.
We are not the greatest fans of the Network Readiness Index, but we do believe it matters. Many of these composite indices are built upon questionable data such as the problematic “Internet users/100” indicator. No time at this moment to probe the details, but here are some key takeaways: The study showed the rapid progress of the so-called Asian Tigers, whose governments have invested heavily in technology. Besides Singapore, Taiwan was ranked 6th, South Korea 10th and Hong Kong 12th. Japan was 19th.
“We told you so.” We said that the last mile was the key to saving lives; that focus had to placed on getting the warnings out to the potentially affected people; that they had to be trained to react appropriately; that all the fancy technology in and under the sea would come to nought if these key actions were not taken. Our collaborator Nalaka Gunawardene says it again in a SciDev piece worth reading: “What failed was the education process ­ only some of the people fled to higher ground and one of the boats put to sea immediately after they felt the earthquake ­ the right thing to do in these circumstances. Why wasn’t everyone well prepared to respond given the recent history of earthquakes and tsunamis in the region?” Nalaka Gunawardene, director of TVE Asia Pacific, a not-for-profit media group, hinted at underlying problems with the system’s suitability for its environment.
Rohan Samarajiva, PhD. CEO of LIRNEasia will be making two presentations at APT Policy and Regulatory Forum (PRF) to be held from 14-16 July 2010 at Yogyakarta, Indonesia. He will be making a presentation,  Lessons from the mobile-voice success for policymakers, regulators, operators, applications providers & manufacturers at the Business Dialogue Innovative Regulation: what industry needs session and another presentation titled Roaming: Regulate or not? at the International Connectivity session. An online version of the agenda can be viewed here.
In addition to giving the keynote at the OECD/infoDev workshop on the Budget Telecom Network Mode at the IGF in Sharm el Sheikh, I attended several sessions, one being that on reducing interconnection costs. The key recommendations seemed to cluster around two actions, creating Internet Exchanges in each country and reducing leased line costs by introducing competition and breaking incumbent control on essential facilities such as cable stations. Our findings from countries that have had working Internet Exchanges at various times such as Bangladesh, Indonesia and Sri Lanka show that their effects fluctuate (there is an unfortunate tendency of internal dissension in these things) and that getting leased line prices (both domestic and international) down is, on balance, more important. That unless the leased-line problem is not solved, the good work done on Internet Exchanges will be washed out. There is an assumption that every country should have an IX.

Lessons of 2004 tsunami used in Samoa

Posted on October 3, 2009  /  2 Comments

A report on the response to the tsunami that hit Samoa shows that preparedness and evacuation planning saved lives even though they had barely eight minutes after the warning from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center. Countries like India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have enough distance from the unstable Sunda Trench and therefore are likely to have more time to organize evacuations. For Indonesia and Thailand, unfortunately, the time will be less. The Pacific islands were so close to the epicentre of the earthquake that a wall of water hit Samoa within eight minutes after the Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii sent its first bulletin Tuesday. Several Samoans said they heard no sirens or warnings, but fled as soon as they were woken up by the earthquake.
The government of Indonesia has announced that World Bank, as administrator for Global Partnership on Output-Based Aid (GPOBA) , in April 2009 has signed a grant agreement for US$1.9 million with the Republic of Indonesia to facilitate access to Internet and associated telecommunication services for people living in remote areas in Java dan Sumatra. Access development and provision are fully financed by GPOBA and supervised by Ministry of Communications and Information’s Directorate General of Applied Telematics (Ditjen Aptel). Minister of Communications and Information, Mohammad Nuh, said that witnessing Indonesia’s development and progress in becoming a knowledge-based society driven by existence and free flow of information is mutually beneficial. Furthermore, targets to be reached with this grant is in line with government efforts in making information more accessible to communities in remote areas.

So what?

Posted on June 12, 2009  /  0 Comments

Our primary funder IDRC is having a big gathering of all its Asian fundees in Penang. As one of the main plenary events, they conducted a “talk show” with representatives of three of their leading projects in the region. Helani Galpaya participated in this talk show from LIRNEasia. At the conclusion, she was asked the following question: “we do not just fund good research, we ask what it will yield for development; we ask so what?” She answered, saying that the good use made of resources entrusted to LIRNEasia could be illustrated through three examples: 1.