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Telecom Trackers - Latest news in Telecom sector

Keep pace with the latest and most recent news and updates in telecom, broadcasting and IT sector

Updated: 2016-10-09T23:15:59.997+05:30


How telecom can enrich billion lives in next few years?


How telecom can enrich billion lives in next few years?v  Bridging the digital connectivity gap·         Overall telecom penetration gap – VLR (Active mobile customers)- 707.3m; If we exclude multiple connections[1]and ~325m population below age of 15[2], somewhere about 375m Indians do not have an active telecom connection yet. ·         Rural telecom penetration gap – Almost 500m rural population does not own a phone·         The rural mobile subscriber base is anticipated to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 12% between 2012 and 2016, at nearly twice the expected growth rate of the saturated urban market. It is likely that 62% of the new mobile subscribers added in the next five years will be from the rural market.[3] The National Telecom Policy (NTP) 2012 also envisages to increase rural teledensity from the current level of around 39 to 70 by the year 2017 and 100 by the year 2020.[4]·         Internet access gap is likely to be bridged in next few years by mobile broadband. 3G subscribers are expected to reach 142 million by 2015, accounting for 12% of the total wireless subscriber base. Further, 3G subscribers are expected to be more than 300 million by 2020, accounting for 20% of the total wireless subscriber base.[5]v  Financial Inclusion through Mobile Platform   ·         Primary attribute of inclusive growth is financial inclusion which requires  greater access to capital. ·         Out of approx 1200 million of Indian population, nearly 70 percent lives in rural locations and over 90 million rural households are on farming. ·         Approximately 27 percent are indebted to formal sources and 13 percent are availing loans from the banks in the annual income bracket of INR 50,000 or less. ·         Millions of people in rural India have little or no access to credit, even from non-institutional sources. Approximately 50 million farmer households in India have not taken any bank credit so far·          Rural banking does not appear to be a financially viable activity for banks either.·         Banks have ~7.4 lac point of sales, ~ 1 lac ATMs, ~94000 branches of scheduled commercial banks[6], 18.3m credit cards and 302m debit cards[7]. Whereas Telecom Service Providers have ~150 Lac point of sales and cover 80% of Indian geography. ·         Mobile platform by creating a branchless banking system for the communities can be a  potential tool for financial inclusion. ·          Low tariffs and low cost of handset provide a clear value proposition for driving financial inclusion through mobile platforms.v  Efficient delivery of public services·         By virtue of their ubiquitous nature, mobiles enable anytime, anywhere access to and delivery of services, bridging the last mile gap without huge upfront investments, even from rural and remote areas of the country, where computer and internet penetration is still low.·         Department of IT  finalised the Mobile Governance Policy Framework in January 2012 ·         The Framework  addresses  many essential issues that can help efficient delivery of public service through mobile o    making government websites mobile-compliant, o   developing mobile applications  in open standards to become interoperable across various operating systems and de[...]

Interesting co-opetition between Apple and Samsung


Samsung and Apple have been vehemently fighting each other over smartphone patents and the market share in various countries, but very few of us know that the two companies remain close collaborators on manufacturing Apple's iPhone. Samsung has a contract for supplying the application processors used in Apple's iPhone!!!! Interesting example of co-opetition. 

However as per market news, Samsung may lose its supply contract for the application processors used in Apple's iPhone for the coming year. Apple is now expected to award the contract to TSMC to manufacture all the application processors (APs) used in the 2014 model of its iPhone. Let's wait for the news to be confirmed officially

Is this the beginning of the end of Google's monopoly as a search engine?


Well this is something which we all go through each day - unconsciously. Have you come across someone who uses internet but has not used Google. For the netizens Google search engine is same as what a dictionary is to a school-going. Just imagine what would happen if you find that your dictionary does not give you the entire meaning or explanation of the words but rather an explanation that suits the publisher's commercial interest. Well something similar is the contention of European Commission(EC) against Google search. As per one of the analysis firm ComScore, Google search has over 80% market share in European Union(EU). The EC has been investigating Google since 2010 on suspicions of uncompetitive behaviour in the search market. In March this year, the EC informed Google of four areas where it thought the search giant may be abusing its dominant position. To address these concerns, Google has offered this month a proposal to EC. Some of the salient points of the same are -a) Label promoted links to Google's own services so that users can distinguish them from other web search results and clearly separate these promoted links by graphical features (such as a frame);(b) Display links to three rival specialised search services close to Google's own services, in a place that is clearly visible to users. (c) Google will offer all websites the option to opt-out from the use of their content in Google's specialised search services, while ensuring that any opt-out does not affect their rankings in Google's general web search results. (d) Google will offer all sites that focus on product search or local search the option to mark certain categories of information in such a way that such information is not indexed or used by Google. (e) The newspaper publishers will receive a way to control on a web page, per web page basis the display of their content in Google News. (f) Google agreed to no longer make any agreements with publishers conditional on using online search advertisements exclusively from Google, nor impose obligations preventing advertisers from managing campaigns across competing advertising platforms. The commitments made by Google to EC would cover the European Economic Area for five years. An independent Monitoring Trustee would advise the Commission in overseeing the proper implementation of the commitments. Last week, The European Commission has published the above proposal received from Google asking for comments from the market before it decides whether to agree to a settlement with Google and make the proposed changes binding on the company. Earlier in Feb 2013, a group of 11 European and US online businesses, as well as three German online associations, have written an open letter to European Commission competition commissioner to urge the EC to end its settlement negotiations with Google over search rankings and issue a Statement of Objections instead. The companies who signed the letter were Expedia, TripAdvisor, Foundem, Streetmap EU, Twenga, Visual Meta, Hot Maps and Euro-Cities.. They express their increasing concern that "effective and future-proof remedies might not emerge through settlement. They claim that Google systematically promotes its own services and demotes or excludes those of its competitors. It would be interesting to see what happens over the period of time. After the EC's decision it is obvious that other countries will follow suit. It seems the Competition Commission of India is also looking into the issue. A precedence set in Europe would help others to ink similar agreements elsewhere. Google has taken a time lead which is very difficult for other search engines to bridge. But such crack downs on anti-competitive behavior will help in bridging the gap, severely denting the monopoly that the Google enjoys in search engine space. It's too early to predict a trend reversal, but the Google era might have started its journey towards desce[...]

Indian mobile market to grow 11 percent in numbers and 8 percent in revenues in 2013


The analyst firm, Gartner, has published its new report on the Indian mobileservices market. The highlights of the report are –·     Indian mobile service market is expected to reach Rs.1.2 trillion (US$22.8 billion) in 2013, up 8 percent from 2012. ·         The mobile connections in India will grow to 770 million in 2013, an 11 percent increase from 712 million connections in 2012. ·         The mobile market in India will continue to face challenges if average revenue per unit (ARPU) does not grow significantly. India will account for 12 percent worldwide mobile connections, but just 2 percent of worldwide mobile services revenue (in constant USD) in 2013.·    Two major challenges that India Telcos will face in near future - growing their profit margin in the face of intense competition and successfully competing with over the top service providers, such as Facebook and WhatsApp.·      With the increased use of voice over IP (VoIP) and the probable termination of national roaming charges, mobile broadband is the area of opportunity for operators. Smaller mobile broadband plans using a sachet-style usage pattern appeal to Indian consumers.·         Further rural expansion of mobile services will come at a cost. ·  In India, innovation in utility apps that help bring efficiencies in a consumer's life will bring in sustained revenue and will be relatively more difficult to replicate by new entrants.·       While social and video apps are doing extremely well in India, it is time to look beyond these and deliver apps that can have a sustained business model. Operators need to insert themselves into the value chain of these new apps and services.[...]

Design Elements of institutional framework for Spectrum trading


What is Spectrum Trading?ITU study material on radio frequency management[[1]]explains spectrum trading as- “In the traditional administrative approach to assignment and authorization system, spectrum is first allocated specified uses and then assigned to particular firms or public organisations that carry out the authorized use according to specific obligations as are laid down in a licence or permit. Secondary trading of spectrum, or simply ‘Spectrum Trading,’ permits the purchaser to change the use to which the spectrum was initially put while maintaining the right to use.”Spectrum trading allows parties to transfer their spectrum rights and obligations to another party, in return for a financial or market benefit.  It allows the present user to decide when and to whom the spectrum authorization will be transferred and what sum it will receive in return.  The market, not the regulator, determines the value.  Further, a consultancy report commissioned by the European Commission, the consulting firm Analysys was cited whereby the following methods for transferring rights of use were identified - • Sale – Ownership of the usage right is transferred to another party. • Buy back – A usage right is sold to another party with an agreement that the seller will buy back the usage right at a fixed point in the future. • Leasing – The usage right is transferred to another party for a defined period of time but ownership remains with the original rights holder • Mortgage – The usage right is used as collateral for a loan, analogous to taking out a mortgage on an apartment  or a house. Spectrum trading covers a range of possibilities, from straightforward change of ownership of an assignment with no change of use to more advanced variants in which assignments may be divided or amalgamated and use changed.[[2]]Design Elements of institutional framework for Spectrum tradingThe success of spectrum trading depends on appropriate institutional framework that precisely determines how rights of use of spectrum are transferred. In case spectrum trading is to be introduced in a country, the basic design elements that will need deliberation will be – (a)  Definitionof property rights and liability rules in terms of [[3]] : (i)           The band which is available for use; (ii)          The geographical area in which it can be used; (iii)        The period for which the licence is entitled; (iv)         The uses to which it can be put; (v)          The licensee’s degree of protection from other users; (vi)         The licensee’s obligation not to interfere with other spectrum user’s rights. (b)  Flexibilityor otherwise with Licensees to determine the services they want to provide with their spectrum, using the technology they deem to be the most efficient.(c)  Transferabilityof property rights after trade - sale or lease, in whole or in part.(d)  Terms and conditions of compulsory purchase backs (with compensation) if required by government under some extreme circumstances. (e)  Need for defining or otherwise of the emission levels, interference limits(f)   Arbitrationmechanisms in case of disputes.(g)  Mechanismof putting in place a public register [[4]]to record changes in ownership and to ensure transparency for private users, effectively displaying information on opportunities and easing entry into unoccupied bands. [[5]] [1]; The ICT Regulation Toolkit is a joint production of infoDev and the International Telecommunication Union. [2]Messolonghi, September 2002, REFARMING AND SECONDARY TRADING IN A CHANGING RADIOCOMMUNICATI[...]

Verizon to buy spectrum leases from Clearwire as US telco's struggle to acquire airwaves rights


As per a latest news report in Wall street journal, Verizon Wireless has offered to pay as much a $1.5 billion to buy spectrum leases from Clearwire Corp. That’s about 8000 Crores in Indian Rupees. However, Verizon Wireless hasn't made an offer for spectrum that Clearwire owns. Clearwire owns some spectrum but it leases other spectrum from third parties so it can offer a nationwide network. Any bid for Clearwire spectrum could face hurdles if Sprint doesn't approve. Sprint has a number of contractual rights that pose steep obstacles for any outsider trying to do a deal. The entire news is contrary to earlier reports according to which Clearwire had agreed to sell itself to part-ownerSprint Nextel Corp.  and Sprint agreed to sell a controlling stake in itself to Japan's Softbank Corp.Strangely Sprint has always been looked upon as a company who would be interested in Clearwire’s spectrum. As of 2010, Clearwire was  licensed 133 MHz of spectrum, and Sprint had 51 MHz. Their combined 184 MHz represented more twice the holdings of Verizon (83 MHz) and AT&T (77 MHz), and nearly four times T-Mobile's haul (48 MHz). However, Verizon has been quietly amassing spectrum since then. Last year, the company paid $3.9 billion to acquire spectrum licenses from a group of cable companies including Comcast Corp and Time Warner Cable Inc. An access to Clearwire’s spectrum would have given Spirint an ability to compete with rivals like AT&T  and Verizon. Clearwire's spectrum is in the 2.5 GHz (2,500 MHz) range, a band where signals don't easily penetrate walls and weaken significantly over long distances, requiring way more cell towers to transmit signal as lower-band airwaves. Verizon's spectrum in the 700 MHz band, acquired at more than $9 billion because it travels over long distances and easily passes through buildings for indoor coverage. On the positive side, the 2.5 GHz range is potentially perfect for small cells, since the higher bands can carry more data over a MHz of spectrum than lower bands, and they have less potential for interference. Some of the bigger markets like China, India and Japan are planning LTE roll outs in 2.5 GHz band. Thus the Verizon offer seems to throw open speculations that Verizon might complement it’s network in 700 MHz with small cells operating in 2.5 GHz. The U.S. telcos appear to be  evolving toward a model in which they will use the lower bands for voice and the higher bands for data transmission including video, streaming tv and cable programming.[...]

Tablet market gearing up; Android gaining market share


The PC manufacturers are for some tough time ahead. In fact, even if your main business is centered around making Laptops, be ready to face some rough weathers going ahead. Why? Here is the reason - according to latest report from market intelligence firm ABI Research named Media Tablets, Ultrabooks and eReaders Research Service, in 2013 approximately 150 million tablets (up 38% year-over-year) are forecasted to ship globally worth an estimated $64 billion (up 28% from 2012) in potential end-user revenues. This is mainly because of  convenience and mobility benefits afforded by tablet 

As far as the market share of operating systems is concern, the tide is slowly turning in favor of Android. About 60% of last year's tabletshipments used Apple's iOS operating system software while 37% were based on Google's Android OS (or development forks of Android, such as found on Amazon's Kindle Fire slates). The remaining 3% OS share consisted of Windows (Windows 7, 8, or RT), BlackBerry Tablet OS, and unidentified OS implementations.


Growing appetite for mobile data and suggested approach for India


Growing appetite for mobile data globallyJuniper has published it’s latest report on Mobile data traffic forecasts. As per them, the total mobile data traffic will exceed 90,000 Petabytes by 2017. What is more interesting is that 60% of this data will be offloaded to Wi-Fi networks and only 40% of the data generated by mobile devices will be carried through the cellular network by 2017. The report also emphasizes the roll that the small cells are going to play going forward.Mobile data growth – Indian scenario India today is on the verge of data revolution and in the current decade, data will transform the Indian telecom industry the way voice did in the previous decade. Indications are that data contribution from 2G will continue to rise, and 3G and LTE adaption will augment this growth. while the telecom industry in the rest of the world obtains 35-50% revenues from non-voice services, India derives only ~15% of sales from non-voice/ data services. Projections by UBS for major telecom players in India indicate that the non-voice revenues are going to be ~30% of total revenues for these players by 2020. These projections may well be surpassed if India is able to achieve a good broadband penetration backed by the recent policy pronouncement on National Broadband Plan.  As against the current broadband subscriber base of 14.68 million, the National Broadband Plan envisages provision of 160 million broadband connections (22 million DSL, 78 million cable and 60 million wireless broadband) by the year 2014. It is likely that the share of wireless broadband may be much more than the expectations as, like other countries, in India also; the data revolutions will piggy back on wireless broadband. 3G and Broadband Wireless Access (BWA) are expected to aid the growth of economy by boosting broadband growth. Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) M-Bit report indicates that mobile data usage in India has grown at 54% growth in 7 months and is likely to double every 12-14 months. This report can be accessed at . Evolution of data services in China provides some insight for the potential for the data segment growth for India. Data service revenue constitutes 30.6% of total service revenue in China as compared with 12.6% in India in FY11, giving an indication for strong data services growth trajectory in India in coming years. Credit Suisse estimates that over the next three years, data could more than double in size to a US$14 bn industry in India, contributing over half the incremental industry revenue and add 500 bp CAGR to an otherwise slowing voice industry. They estimate 3G’s contribution to mobile EBITDA to rise to 9-13% (from less than 5%) by FY3/14 Wi-Fi offload – a solution to handle growing data volumes and speeds No doubt more and more carriers are adapting to Wi-Fi. Recently AT&T had inked a pact with Boingo - one of the leading Wi-Fi service provider having more than 600000 Wi-Fi Spots around the globe. Going forward the carrier-Wi-Fi adoption will be gather speed mainly because of two developments – a)   NGH (Next Generation Hotspot) and Hotspot 2.0 specifications along with 5GHz enabled devices. b)   Carrier-grade small cells along with Wi-Fi will enable high levels of capacity and along with the macro network will provide commercial and financial success to the operator. Now what’s there for India in all this? Ironically, there are not many Wi-Fi hotspots in India currently. Given that almost one-sixth of the world's mobile subscribers are in India and that the country is already spectrum starved, in future offloading the mobile traffic on Wi-Fi is the only feasible and practical solution to cater to the growing hung[...]

252 million domain names have been registered globally by end of 2012


As per the latest issue of VeriSign’s Domain Name Industry Brief, the total number of registered domain names to a little more than 252 million worldwide across all top-level domains (TLDs). Of these, about six million domain names were added to the internet in the fourth quarter of 2012 whihc equates to a growth rate of 2.5 per cent over the preceding quarter. According to the report, as of December 31, 2012, the base of registered names in .com equaled 106.2 million, while .net equaled 14.9 million. 

Global mobile penetration and subscriber numbers


Wondering how many mobile subscribers are there on planet earth??? Well by end of December, 2012 global mobile subscriptions were around 6.3 billion, growing at about 9 per cent year-on-year - as per a report by European telecom equipment maker Ericsson. According to the Ericsson Mobility Report, total mobile subscription in China stood at 1.26 billion, while in India it was 713 million in 2012. The net additions in the fourth quarter of 2012 were 140 million. So what is Global wireless tele-density. Well, Global mobile penetration reached 89 per cent in Q4 2012. However if you looking for unique users figures, the actual number of unique users were around 4.4 billion, thanks to people having several subscriptions. If you are wondering which countries are adding most subscriptions, then the report answers your query. China accounted for about 22 per cent of net additions, adding around 30 million subscriptions, followed by India (11 million), Bangladesh (9 million), Indonesia (8 million), and Nigeria (5 million).As far as mobile broadband subscribers are concern, In Q4 of 2012, mobile broadbandsubscriptions grew 125 million to 1.5 billion, reflecting a 50 per cent year-on-year increase. GSM, GPRS and EDGE subscriptions grew 44 million and WCDMA and HSPA grew 70 million. Together these technologies represent 80 per cent of total net additions. That apart, LTE subscriptions grew from 14 million to 57 million in 2012[...]

Using Google Maps while driving may be illegal - New debate around technological advancements v/s legal provisions


January last year Steven R Spriggs was stopped by police in California, USA  for using a smartphone as a navigational aid. As per him, he got stuck  in a traffic jam near downtown Fresno and thought nothing of whipping out his iPhone 4 and clicking on the map feature to see if there was an alternate route around the construction mess. He was surprised when he looked up and saw a California Highway Patrol motorcycle officer ordering him to pull over. He showed the officer that he was looking at a map and not texting or talking. He got a $160 ticket.  having graduated from a Law school, he obviously sued claiming that it was not explicitly forbidden in the existing legislation covering the use of a mobile phone while driving.It is reportedly said that he initially brought a paper map to court to argue that it was legal to hold it while driving. Not persuaded, the traffic court commissioner found him guilty. He appealed to the three-judge panel of Fresno Superior Court, arguing in a legal brief that the iPhone has a flashlight feature and other functions that can be useful to a driver and aren't as dangerous as texting or talking. As he is no 'Jolly LLB'; he again lost. Fresno County Judge, writing on March 21 for the three-judge panel upholding the commissioner's ruling, said "the primary evil sought to be avoided is the distraction the driver faces when using his or her hands to operate the phone. That distraction would be present whether the wireless telephone was being used as a telephone, a GPS navigator, a clock or a device for sending and receiving text messages and emails."  The judge also threw out an argument that the term "using" could not be expanded beyond making a phone call to using a phone app -- ruling that if the law had intended to limit the application of the statute to "conversing" or "listening and talking," then it could have done so.Fortunately, as of now, the ruling doesn't apply outside of Fresno County. However it opens a bigger debate on Technological advancements v/s archaic legal provisions. In this case the driver was holding the smart phone while using the application. What happens when the smartphone is mounted on cradle. Someone may argue that one can talk on speaker phone even while not holding the phone in hand. So ultimately what seems more important to me is the intent. Else, why should a person spent and keep different devices, when a phone can serve as clock, music player, navigator, climate indicator etc........[...]

Samsung's Smart Pad likely to hit the market before Apple's IPad 5


As per some reports Samsung is planning to launch a 6.3 inch Android smartphone in next 2 to 3 months. So the space between a 5 inch smart phone and a seven inch tablet is going to be filled by a converged device "Smart pad". If rumors are to be believed this is part of Samsung's Project Möbius, the code-name for Samsung's mammoth smartphone device, which is tipped to launch as the Samsung Galaxy Mega. It is quiet possible that Samsung may launch it with Google's next in line Android operating system i.e. Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie further smoothened by Samsung's customized Touchwiz user interface. A dual-core Exynos processor, an 8MP rear-facing camera, a 2MP front-facing camera are likely features. You may have to wait to check for affordability!!! The Smart Pad is likely to be launched ahead of Apple's next generation iPad whose production is expected to start at the Chinese assembly plants in July-August 2013. The 5th-generation 9.7-inch version iPad is expected to be thinner and lighter than the fourth-generation one and will adopt a slim bezel design, similar to that of the iPad mini.DisclaimerThe views and opinions expressed in articles on this blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any agency or organisation they serve.[...]

Telecom New Zealand unveils its LTE roll out plans


Telecom New Zealand plans to have LTE live on a large part of its smartphone network in Auckland by October 2013. The company will then extend LTE coverage to Wellington and Christchurch by December and expects to have LTE live on close to half of its nationwide smartphone network during 2014. As per news reported in some papers, the company has selected Huawei to build its network of 4G-capable mobile sites – known as the eUTRAN. 

Telecom plans to install dual carrier HSPA+ on more than half of mobile sites, fast backhaul to 90 percent of mobile sites, and – from mid 2013 – rolling out Optical Transport Network (OTN) technology to the network core. 


Phases of Policy reforms - Bucket Graph showing the Indian Telecom Story in last decade



3G Intra Circle Roaming (ICR) issue


Last week couple of news on 3G Intra Circle Roaming(ICR) arrangements in India raised the interests of the stakeholders. A brief background will help in understanding the issue better. Department of Telecom (DoT) who is the licencor and issues all telecom licences in India had earlier asked 3 Telecom service providers viz. Airtel, Idea and Vodafone to stop ICR based 3G services in the service areas where 3G spectrum was not assigned to them. In reaction to this, these 3 operators filed petitions in TDSAT (the tribunal which hears cases related to telecom in India). Incidentally the two members of TDSAT gave a split judgement. Subsequently DoT asked these operators to stop the 3G services based on ICR arrangements and even slapped penalties. The operators went to High Court and got a stay. Last week the stay has been vacated. To understand the issue of 3G ICR, the best is to go through the split judgement of TDSAT. To help the readers of this blog, I have summarized the same below. However I advise the readers to go through the original judgement so as to obviate any errors that may arise because of my understanding of the judgement. In case you are short of time, here you go ----    Split Judgment by TDSAT on ICR dated 03.07.2012 - Finding the plea acceptable and valid, TDSAT Chairman Justice  S B Sinha allowed the operators’ plea against the government's directive to stop intra circle 3G roaming saying that it was violative of natural justice. The Petitions were allowed, the impugned orders dated 23.12.2011 was set aside with liberty to the Respondent to pass appropriate orders upon giving due opportunity of hearing to the Petitioner. However, differing in the decision taken, TDSAT Member P K Rastogi dismissed plea saying that the petitioners who have not got 3G spectrum allotted by the licensor in certain circles, cannot provide 3G services to its customers in those circles by way of making intra circle arrangement with the service providers having 3G spectrum.   Salient points deliberated in judgement delivered by TDSAT Member P K Rastogia.   On the principal question as to whether the petitioners having UASL/CMTS license along with 2G spectrum in certain circles can provide 3G services to its customers in these circles although 3G spectrum has not been allotted to them and whether such services can be provided by making intra circle roaming arrangements with operators having 3G spectrum in these circles, Member TDSAT has taken a view that the reading of cl. 2.2 (a)(i) of UASL shows that services to be provided by the licensee cover collection, carriage, transmission and delivery of voice and/or non-voice messages over licensee’s network in the designated service area and includes provision of all types of access services. In addition to this, except those services listed in para 2.2 (b)(i), licensee cannot provide any service which require a separate licence. Further he deliberated on the issue –“whether provision of 3G services requires a separate license”. On the issue, he is of the opinion that it is clear from the terms and conditions of license that the provision of 3G services cannot be provided without amendment to the UAS licence under Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 and without getting a license from WPC wing of DOT under Indian Wireless Act, 1933 for the relevant spectrum required to provide 3G services.  Thus, in his view, the provisions of 3G services require a separate license.  If the UASL licensee does not have separate license to provide 3G servies, it violate clauses 2.2(a) (i) and 2.2(b) (i) of the terms and conditions of the license.  b.   3G s[...]

LTE deployments in various countries


This is compiled from various sources. Readers may cross check for data consistencies.Singapore - SingTel launched commercial  LTE service on December 22, 2011 in 1800 MHz and 2.6 GHz spectrumStarHub has completed LTE testing in 2.6 GHz and 1800 MHz and an LTE1800 network in refarmed 1800 MHz  is being deployed for commercial launch in Q4 2012Malaysia- Celcom is trialling LTE  in 1800 MHz and 2.6 GHz spectrum. DiGi plans to  launch LTE  in 2.6 GHz  by 2013. U Mobile announced on March 15, 2011 plans to launch a commercial LTE network in 2.6 GHz.Japan - Softbank Mobile,  a member of the Global TD-LTE Initiative,  commercially launched  XGP/LTE TDD services  on February 24, 2012 following a  precommercial pilot service  which began  November 1, 2011. The network is deployed in 20 MHz of 2.5 GHz spectrum  bought from Willcom (PHS operator).China - China Mobile HK launched commercial LTE FDD services in 2.6 GHz on April 25, 2012 and is evolving the network to also support LTE TDD this year. In  an announcement on December 29, 2011  OFCA launched a consultation on auctioning spectrum in the 2.5/2.6GHz range, offering five blocks of 2 x 5 MHz, by  auction  which would be held  in Q1 2013 at the earliest.China Mobile plans to have  20,000  LTE TDD base sites  covering 500 million people by end 2012, increasing to 200,000 by end 2013. Commercial service launch is anticipated in 2013-2014. China Mobile has 1.9 GHz, 2.0 GHz,2.3 GHz and 2.6 GHz bands (classified as  F, A, E and D bands). The trials use the D and F bands.Honk Kong - 2 x 15 MHz blocks of 2.6 GHz spectrum  were obtained  via auction each by China Mobile  HK  (Peoples Phone), Genius Brand (Hutchison Telecom/PCCW JV) and CSL Limited.Australia - ACMA announced the first formal steps toward a joint auction of new licences in 700 MHz DD and 2.6 GHz.Mexico -Telefónica and Telcel have conducted tests of LTE. Telcel is preparing for commercial launch  to consumers  during April 2012.  Telefónica  plans to launch LTE by 2013.  The  government  plans to auction new spectrum in 700 MHz and 2.6 GHz. Brazil -Sky Brasil commercially launched LTE TDD services (2.6 GHz - Band 38) on December 13, 2011 in Brasilia. More cities will be covered in 2012.Claro has been testing LTE in 2.6 GHz since Q4 2011Canada -The 2.6 GHz trial  was enabled by  a development license from regulator Industry Canada. Industry Canada is preparing to auction 700 MHz and 2.6 GHz spectrum in 2012 and will hold a 6-hour  information session on May 30, 2012Sri-Lanka Mobitel announced on May 6, 2011 completion of an LTE trial, which achieved 96 Mbps downlink speed in 2.6 GHz. More trials are planned in other bands.Taiwan -Chunghwa Telecom has been trialling LTE  in 2.6 GHz and 700 MHz spectrum.  The company  has completed LTE tests on the high-speed rail system in TDD  and FDD modes using 2.6 GHz. Vietnam -RusViet Telecom  (an Alltech company) trialled an LTE network in 2010 in Hanoi.  The company plans expanding coverage  of  its 2.6 GHz LTE network in 2012, including to Hi Chi Minh.Armenia -VivaCell-MTS announced commercial launch of LTE services on December 28, 2011, initially in Yerevan, using 2.6 GHz spectrum.Austria -Regulator  TKK completed the au[...]

Cross Media Ownership restriction in European Countries and New Zealand


Three European countries – France, Italy, and Germany – have developed specific legislation on cross-media ownership[1]. As per French legislation, cross-media mergers are regulated by Law 86-1067 (Loi Léotard) which was revised on 10 July 2004[2]. According to article 41.1, “at national level, an individual or legal entity can be involved only in two of the following areas: one or more television licences for analogue or digital terrestrial channels reaching four million residents; one or more terrestrial radio services reaching 30 million people; daily papers that have a market share of more than 20 percent of the national circulation”. In the Italian law framework, where cross-media mergers are currently regulated by law n.122, 3 May 2004 (Legge Gasparri)[3]. This law regulates the media sector as an ‘integrated communications market’ (or SIC, Sistema Integrato delle Comunicazioni) which includes a broad range of industries: television, press, radio, internet, in addition to publishing, cinema and advertising. Cross-media ownership limits do not allow any owner to achieve more than 20 percent of the share of revenues within the entire SIC.As per the German legislation, under §26 of the German Broadcasting Treaty, assumes that a broadcaster would reach a dominant position “if it achieves a 30 percent audience share, or an audience share of 25 percent if it concurrently holds a dominant position in a related, media-relevant market or if an overall assessment of its activities in television and in related media-relevant markets suggests that the influence of such activities is equivalent to that of a company with a 30 percent audience share” (Just, 2009: 11). A particular weighting system has been developed by the KEK, the German Communication Authority, in order to determine the equivalent share of a media company.FranceA law, enacted in 1986 and the subsequent establishment of the Conseil Superieur de l’Audiovisuel (CSA) in 1989 regulates the governance of the communications industry in France.  The CSA also manages issues of media ownership and concentration. While the Competition authorities are obliged to consult with the CSA on mergers and acquisitions in media matters it is the sole responsibility of the CSA to monitor mergers and cross media ownership. Shareholders have the obligation to report to the CSA when their holding exceeds 10% so the CSA can effectively monitor share capital ownership.Specific ownership restrictions applicable to the media sectorFrench regulations provide for media ownership restrictions in order to preserve media pluralism and competition. In particular, any single individual or legal entity cannot hold, directly or indirectly, more than 49 per cent of the capital or the voting rights of a company that has an authorisation to provide a national terrestrial television service where the average audience for television services (either digital or analogue) exceeds 8 per cent. In addition, any single individual or legal entity that already holds a national terrestrial television service where the average audience for this service exceeds 8 per cent may not, directly or indirectly, hold more than 33 per cent of the capital or voting rights of a company that has an authorisation to provide a local terrestrial television service.[4]Further, unless otherwise agreed in international agreements to which France is a party, any foreign national may not acquire shares of capital of a company holding a licence for a radio or television service in France and that uses radio-electrical frequencies if this acquisition has the effect of raising ([...]

Active Mobile subscriber base in India



Human capacity Building – The ITU-D initiatives


The Human Capacity Building Division of the ITU Telecommunication Development Bureau (BDT) has been working to achieve its mission of strengthening the human, institutional and organizational capacity of developing countries in a manner that prepares them for the challenges of a digital economy. One of their major strategies to achieve this mission is through information and resource sharing on all major areas covered by ITU-D activities. To achieve this BDT rely on a) their ongoing regular programme activities; b) special projects; and c) partnerships. Over the past few years, for its ICT capacity building and skills development efforts, BDT has mainly relied on ITU Academy which through its portal ( has endeavored to build up high quality training resources and materials. The efforts of ITU Academy have been further corroborated by the ITU Centres of Excellence(CoE) and Internet Training Centers. ITU Centres of Excellence, distributed around the world, serve as regional focal points for professional development, research, and knowledge sharing and are now being joined together into a single global network sharing training curricula, resources and expertise. The capacity building interventions of BDT target different audiences - ranging from government policy-makers and regulators, to professional business-focused curricula for ICT executives and managers and specialized programmes for technical and operational staff. Gathering and publishing ICT related statistics has also been one of the major activities of ITU that has supported the capacity building effortsTopics that are currently in focus at ITU academy can be subdivided as follows-            i.      Policy and regulation related –·         Accessibility through ICT - Equitable communication for everyone  ·         Analogue to Digital Broadcasting Transition·         Analogue to Digital Broadcasting Transition         ii.      Technologies and service related -·         Internet Exchange Points (IXPs)·         IPTV·         IPv6·         Spectrum Management·         Wireless Networking for Development        iii.      Business and Management related –·         Cost Modeling·         Human Resources Management·         Open Educational Resources[...]

Verizon + AT&T = Vodafone


As per reports in some of the papers, the two largest American operators, Verizon and AT&T, are putting together a takeover bid for Vodafone. The bid would offer an around 40 percent premium to Vodafone's current share price, or about 260 pence per share. This would value Vodafone at about USD 245 billion. Under the proposal, Verizon would buy Vodafone's 45 percent stake in their Verizon Wireless joint venture, while AT&T takes over Vodafone's non-US assets. However nothing is official till date. 

Mobile phone market booming in India


According to a study by  market research group IDC, Mobile phone market in India grew  to 218 million units, a 16 per cent year-on-year growth from CY 2011. Smartphone in the country grew by 48 per cent to 16.3 million in 2012 against 11 million in 2011.
Local vendors have remained dominant in sub-$100 price band while they pose serious competition to the global vendors in the $100—200 price band. 
Android continues to be the dominant player in the Indian smartphone market. 
As per IDC. the mobile phone market is expected to continue its growth into 2013, driven by the stupendous growth of close to 70 per cent in the smartphone market.”

Smartphones - Market share


As per the latest reports published by the comScore Google Android continued to lead among smartphone platforms, accounting for 53.6 percent of smartphone subscribers, while Apple secured 34.3 percent. For the three-month average period ending in October, device manufacturer Samsung ranked as the top OEM with 26.3 percent of U.S. mobile subscribers (up 0.7 percentage points).Top Mobile OEMsShare (%) of Mobile SubscribersJul-12Oct-12Point ChangeSamsung25.6%26.3%0.7Apple16.3%17.8%1.5LG18.4%17.6%-0.8Motorola11.2%11.0%-0.2HTC6.4%6.0%-0.4Smartphone Platform Market Share121.3 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones (51.9 percent mobile market penetration) Top Smartphone PlatformsShare (%) of Smartphone SubscribersJul-12Oct-12Point ChangeGoogle52.2%53.6%1.4Apple33.4%34.3%0.9RIM9.5%7.8%-1.7Microsoft3.6%3.2%-0.4Symbian0.8%0.6%-0.2Mobile Content UsageIn October, the percent of mobile subscribers in USA that used various types of contents are as follows - text messaging - 75.9 %(up 0.3 percentage points)Downloaded applications -  54.5 % (up 1.9 percentage points), Browsers - 52.7% (up 1.5 percentage points).Social networking sites or blogs - 39.4 % (up 1.5 percentage points) Game-playing - 34.1 % (up 0.3 percentage points), Listened to music on their phones -28.7 % (up 0.4 percentage points)[...]

Tablet market forecast by IDC


International Data Corporation (IDC) has come out with latest quarterly forecasts for tablet market. As per IDC tablet market will increase its 2012 forecast for the worldwide tablet market to 122.3 million, up from its previous forecast of 117.1 million units. IDC also raised its 2013 forecast number to 172.4 million units, up from 165.9 million units. And by 2016 worldwide shipments should reach 282.7 million units, up from a previous forecast of 261.4 million units.IDC also forecasts a decline in eReader market. IDC now expects 2012 eReader shipments to top out at 19.9 million units, down from the 27.7 million units that shipped in 2011.As far as tablet operating system splits is concern, IDC now expects Android's worldwide tablet share to increase from 39.8% in 2011 to 42.7% for the full year of 2012. During that same time Apple's share will slip from 56.3% in 2011 to 53.8% in 2012. Long term, IDC predicts Windows-based tablets (including Windows 8 and Windows RT) will grab share from both iOS and Android, growing from 1% of the market in 2011 to 2.9% in 2012, on its way to 10.2% in 2016.Tablet Operating Systems, Market Share Forecast and CAGR 2012-2016Tablet OSMarket ShareCAGR 2012 - 201620122016iOS53.8%49.7%20.9%Android42.7%39.7%21.0%Windows2.9%10.3%69.2%Other0.6%0.3%7.7%Grand Total100.0%100.0%23.3%Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker, December 5, 2012Table Notes:Windows shipments include Windows RT, Windows 8, and Windows 7 tablets.Shipments include shipments to distribution channels or end users. OEM sales are counted under the vendor/brand under which they are sold.[...]

Internet Bandwidth consumed in making VoIP calls


This one is bit technical. As many of us have started making voice calls on the IP in our smartphones, I thought many of you would be interested to know how much internet bandwidth is consumed if you make a one minute of Voive call on IP i.e. VoIP call. Caveat - Some of highly technical stuff required cross-authentication from Geeks  (Learnt this from Wiki)Here you go.....Number of Bytes Consumed in VOIPTo know exactly how many bytes a voice conversation consumes, one needs to know which codec her VoIP service is using. CODECS A codec is a compression engine that transforms your (analog) voice into digital data, removing the silent moments (which make up to half of all conversations), and do other things to render the data load as light as possible. A codec is an algorithm (sort of a computer program), most of the time installed as a software on a server or embedded within a piece of hardware (IP Phones), that is used to convert voice (in the case of VoIP) signals into digital data to be transmitted over the Internet or any network during a VoIP call.The word codec comes from the composed words coder-decoder or compressor-decompressor. Codecs normally achieve the following three tasks :Encoding – decodingCompression – decompressionEncryption - DecryptionEncoding - decodingCodec digitizes your analog voice to digital. When you talk over normal landline phone, your voice is transported in an analog way. But with VoIP, your voice is converted into digital signals. This conversion is technically called encoding, and is achieved by a codec. At destination, digitized voice is to be decoded back to its original analog state so that the other person can hear and understand it.Compression – decompressionBandwidth is a scarce commodity. To make the digitized voice less bulky, it is compressed. By compression, the same data is stored but using lesser space (digital bits). Once it reaches its destination, it is decompressed back to it original state before being decoded. Encryption – decryptionEncryption is one of the best tools for achieving security. It is the process of changing data into such a state that it no one can understand. This way, even if the encrypted data is intercepted by unauthorized people, the data still remains confidential. Once the encrypted data reaches destination, it is decrypted back to its original form. Often, when data is compressed, it already is encrypted to a certain extent, since it is altered from its original state.Common VoIP CodecsCodecBandwidth/kbpsCommentsG.71164Delivers precise speech transmission. low processor requirements. Needs at least 128 kbps for two-way.G.72248/56/64Adapts to varying compressions G.723.15.3/6.3High compression with high quality audio.  Lot of processor power.G.72616/24/32/40An improved version of G.721 and G.723 (different from G.723.1)G.7298Excellent bandwidth utilization. Error tolerant. License required.GSM13High compression ratio. Free and available in many hardware and software platforms. iLBC15Robust to packet loss. FreeSpeex2.15 / 44Minimizes bandwidth usage by using variable bit rate.The approximate values for data consumption of the most common codecs used for VoIP are as follows:Codec      BR                     NEBG.711      64 Kbps     &nbs[...]

Verizon to sell part of 700MHz band spectrum


Verizon to sell part of 700MHz band spectrum(image)