Broadband Growing in Emerging Markets

Governments of most countries recognise that mobile applications and web services can deliver concrete benefits promoting progress and better education to their population.  New web applications offer huge promise through lower costs and greater coverage to improve the quality of life of the people in emerging economies.

Developing countries cannot afford to miss out on the development, growth and trade opportunities offered by broadband infrastructure. Far beyond the tangible economic benefits realized through broadband infrastructure in jobs, trade and productivity – the information and education services offered by the Internet are now public goods with truly global dimensions.

More information on the views of broadband from various leaders around the world as well as information on the broadband markets of the emerging economies of Russia, India, Gabon, Tonga, Nigeria, South Africa and China available here.

4G and LTE

The next-generation 4G technology for both GSM and CDMA cellular carriers is referred to as LTE or Long Term Evolution. Approved in 2008 with download speeds up to 173 Mbps, LTE was defined by the 3G Partnership Project in the 3GPP Release 8 specification.

LTE uses a different air interface and packet structure than previous 3G systems, which are GSM’s UMTS (WCDMA and HSPA) and CDMA’s EV-DO. However, it is envisioned that all GSM and CDMA2000 carriers will eventually migrate to LTE to provide an interoperable cellular system worldwide.

LTE, Officially 4G, is considerably faster than GSM’s HSPA and CDMA’s EV-DO but was considered a 3G technology by the ITU until late 2010. Along with WiMAX 2, the ITU previously designated LTE-A (LTE-Advanced) as the true 4G evolution. In late 2010, the ITU widened its definition to include regular LTE, WiMAX and HSPA+ as bona fide 4G technologies since they are considerably faster than existing 3G networks. See IMT-Advanced.

E-UTRA/OFDMA, IP and IMS
LTE uses the Evolved UMTS Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA) air interface, which is based on OFDMA and is a departure from the TDMA used in GSM and the CDMA used in GSM/UMTS and CDMA2000 (see GSM and CDMA). In addition, rather than proprietary packet structures, LTE is based entirely on IP packets, and voice travels over IP (VoIP). The IP part of LTE is called “Evolved Packet System” (EPS), which was previously called “System Architecture Evolution” (SAE).

Two Telecoms for Sale in Colombia

Empresa Telecomunicaciones BogotaColombia’s telecommunications could offer substantial returns for investors willing to take on emerging market risks. The outlook is promising for the Colombian economy, which is forecast to grow by an average of 4.5% annually during the 2010-2020 decade.

EmcaliTwo state-owned companies are up for sale. They are ETB, with about 26% of the country’s fixed lines in services, and the other is Emcali, with about 7%. During 2011, radical transformations are expected both in terms of market consolidation and in the provision of new services, with fixed-line operators ETB and Emcali seeking strategic partners and/or investors.

For further details on the very dynamic Colombian Telecom Market, see this report: Colombian Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband Markets Forecasts.

Australia Internet, Broadband and Digital Economy Statistics

New Report about Australia Telecommunications

This report provides 160 statistical tables for Internet, broadband and all aspects of the digital economy and telecommunications in Australia

Australia is among the leading countries whose government is actively investigating the social and economic benefits that can be achieved through the deployment of a mainly fibre-based telecommunications infrastructure. Services that depend on high quality broadband infrastructure include tele-health, e-education, e-business, digital media, e-government, smart meters, and so forth.

The decision from the Australian government to launch a $43 billion national FttH broadband network is a clear indication that they believe broadband is an essential telecommunications infrastructure. A digital economy requires an open broadband infrastructure, and there is widespread support for this visionary plan in Australia.

For complete information, read the executive summary in Australia Telecommunications.

Americans Adopt the Smartphones

In the very competitive and fast-growing smartphone market, the future launch of the new iPhone 4 represents the opportunity to capture market share for Apple. Other manufacturers and platforms within the smartphone market, must rely heavily on brand awareness and positive word-of-mouth to sustain upward momentum in their quest for market share. According to data from comScore MobiLens, smartphone penetration in the U.S. has grown from 11 percent of mobile subscribers in April 2009 to more than 20 percent in April 2010 — nearly double in just one year. The total number of smartphone subscribers now totals more than 48 million.

In early 2010, 3G subscribers accounted for around 13% of all mobile subscribers worldwide. Despite the financial crisis, it is full steam ahead for one of the largest emerging markets – China, which is benefitting from huge investments in 3G network deployment. India is also finalising 3G licensing arrangements despite the regulatory battles that have hindered developments there in the past. After more than five years of waiting, the business case for 3G is beginning to build around the world and most 3G deployments now rollout smoothly in contrast to the many problems experienced in early years. Read more about 3G market developments, including forecasts and global 3G subscriber statistics.

Jordan Telecommunications, Mobile and Broadband

Jordan is a standout country in the region for its relatively well-developed telecoms sector when one considers its lower GDP per capita. Mobile penetration is at around 100%. The government is also making strenuous efforts to encourage Internet penetration growth, so far with little increase in subscriber numbers.

The market is the most liberalised in the region. Incumbent JTG, operating as Orange Jordan, has been privatised and France Telecom owns a controlling 51% share. Competition is allowed in all sectors of the market. In the fixed-line sector alternative operators have acquired licences but have yet to make much impact. Mostly they offer VoIP services and compete in the long-distance voice market, often the first market where an incumbent would lose market share upon market liberalisation.

Competition also exists in the broadband market at a retail level, although JTG’s ISP has a 50% market share. JTG has reduced its wholesale prices considerably, with a 70% reduction from the beginning of 2007 to June 2009.

Licensed WiMAX operators are beginning to make inroads into the market, with over 17% market share of the small broadband market by late 2009. WiMAX operator Mada Communications offers subscribers free unlimited VoIP calls to other Mada subscribers and competitive rates on international VoIP calls. WiMAX operators have yet to have the same impact as in the richer markets of Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

Competition in the mobile market is intense, with four operators, resulting in much reduced prices. This in turn led to very high subscriber numbers. JTG was awarded a 3G licence in August 2009. A tender for this single licence closed in June 2009 but attracted only one bid, from JTG, which the regulator said did not meet the technical or financial criteria of the tender. Later negotiations resulted in the award to JTG and services were launched in early March 2010. Read more.

Global Mobile Broadband

The global mobile broadband market continues to gain momentum and is becoming an increasingly exciting sector to watch. One of the key reasons for this growth is the fact that due to competition and a saturated mobile voice market, the operators have been forced to offer very competitive capped data packages. Non-SMS mobile data is now growing as it is becoming easier to access via mobile devices such as smart phones. Mobile networks are also improving as 3.5G (HSPA) continues to be deployed and wireless broadband technologies (4G) emerge over the next few years. While on deck mobile data usage remains strong, off deck usage to both mobile specific Internet sites and regular sites is also growing rapidly. Read the executive summary.

The Android Phone

In the Mobile World Congress that took place last February 15-18, 2010 in Barcelona, Spain, more than 1,300 technology companies including Google, Microsoft and Samsung displayed their latest cutting-edge  products. One of the main technologies exhibited was the new android open source platform and devices developed by Google. To get a good idea of what the Android Open Source Project is all about, look at the following video:

Android is the first free, open source, and fully customizable mobile platform. Android offers a full stack: an operating system, middleware, and key mobile applications. It also contains a rich set of APIs that allows third-party developers to develop great applications. One of the strongest challengers to the Microsoft Windows Phone 7 is Google, with its Android open source platform.

A year or so ago, the G1 and a phone by HTC were the only Android phones on sale.  At present there are 27 models on the market, which are available in 59 countries.  Other androids will soon be available to the public from Sony Ericsson, which presented Android models at the 2010 Mobile World Congress, including the very compact X10 mini and X10 mini pro. Look at the impressive features of this android smart phone. The best news is that the prices are expected to drop lower in the near future.

Mobile World Congress 2010

At the recent Mobile World Congress 2010 that took place in the city of Barcelona, Eric Schmidt, the Chairman & CEO of Google, addresses the audience with an excellent presentation that could be called in his own words Mobile First. He gives great importance to three things in the future of technology: computation, connectivity and the cloud. You must register (free) to see the 74 minute presentation, but it is worth your time.

Mobile Internet is gaining importance the world over. To keep up to date, here are the latest reports about Mobile Internet.  Mobile phones are increasingly becoming the preferred communication tool for personal and business use, and 2010 will offer users a number of innovations.  Smart phones have advantages over the standard mobile phone to deal with these advances because of their large display screens and speedy internet connections.

There are already phones on the market using 1 gigahertz chips, says Andy Rubin, who works on Google’s Android platform. Mobile Technology is gaining importance the world over. To keep up to date, here are the latest reports about MobileTechnology .