Indian GSM body sets up 200 mln target by 2007

India’s GSM mobile user base is expected to touch 200 million customers by 2007 as firms ramp up networks in rural areas and slash rates to woo customers in the hotly competitive market, a leading industry body said on Tuesday

With more than 52 million users, India’s fast maturing mobile services sector is already the world’s fastest growing wireless market as cut-rate tariffs are pulling in some 1.7 million new customers each month.

“The Indian GSM cellular industry has matured with most GSM networks making profits and are well positioned to reach the 200-million mark by 2007,” a joint statement by the Cellular Operators’ Association of India (COAI) and consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers said.

NEW DELHI – India’s GSM mobile user base is expected to touch 200 million customers by 2007 as firms ramp up networks in rural areas and slash rates to woo customers in the hotly competitive market, a leading industry body said on Tuesday

With more than 52 million users, India’s fast maturing mobile services sector is already the world’s fastest growing wireless market as cut-rate tariffs are pulling in some 1.7 million new customers each month.
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Bharti plans to begin 3G trial runs by month-end

BHARTI Tele-Ventures is set to begin trial runs of 3G mobile services by April-end. The company has sought spectrum from the Department of Telecom (DoT) to conduct the trial runs.

The company has told the DoT that it has set in place the equipment and the network required to conduct trial runs but is awaiting the release of spectrum in the 1900 Mhz, which has been earmarked for 3G services.

New Delhi: Bharti Tele-Ventures is set to begin trial runs of 3G mobile services by April-end. The company has sought spectrum from the Department of Telecom (DoT) to conduct the trial runs.

The company has told the DoT that it has set in place the equipment and the network required to conduct trial runs but is awaiting the release of spectrum in the 1900 Mhz, which has been earmarked for 3G services.

In a letter to the DoT Secretary, Brijesh Kumar, the company has said, “Bharti Cellular has planned actively to start the trials of 3G networks in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad. It is also relevant to mention that the vendors have also been identified for trials and had many rounds of detailed discussions to carry out the trails by April-end, 2005.”

The company had earlier said that it was lining up investments of $1 billion for rolling out 3G mobile services across the country.

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Hutch flags off `mobile’ shops in Hyderabad

HUTCH, the cellular service provider, has flagged off the first in the series of three `Mobile Hutch Shops’ here on Monday.

Addressing a press conference after launching the mobile shop, Mr Samuel Selvakumar, Operations Director of Hutchison Essar South, said customers would get access to all the Hutch services, available at the regular shops, at the mobile units.

hutch
HUTCH, the cellular service provider, has flagged off the first in the series of three `Mobile Hutch Shops’ here on Monday.

Addressing a press conference after launching the mobile shop, Mr Samuel Selvakumar, Operations Director of Hutchison Essar South, said customers would get access to all the Hutch services, available at the regular shops, at the mobile units.

Based in Hyderabad, Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam, the three vans would reach 150 towns covering a length of 100-200 km and two towns a day.

Customers in the respective areas would get an SMS, giving details of the scheduled arrival and stay of the van.

The company believed that the service provided the customers with flexibility to access the Hutch services.

These vans would have pre-determined geographical areas and routes to cover.

These were equipped with Global Packet Radio Service to provide online connectivity to facilitate billing services.

Mr Hamir Bakshi, Chief Operating Officer (AP), said the company had a subscriber base of four lakh in Andhra Pradesh.

The total market size was about 28 lakh.

SOURCE:thehindubusinessline.com

Maran asks cellular industry to reduce mobile roaming charges

The Communication and IT Minister, Mr Dayanidhi Maran, on Tuesday said the roaming charges of private cellular operators are ‘very high’ and the industry must look into it to bring them down.

NEW DELHI: The Communication and IT Minister, Mr Dayanidhi Maran, on Tuesday said the roaming charges of private cellular operators are ‘very high’ and the industry must look into it to bring them down.

“Mobile charges for roaming are very, very high… I think they should be much lower than the existing rates. BSNL does not charge roaming, why can’t the private operators also take this initiative to bring them down,” Mr Maran said at the cellular summ it organised by Cellular Operators Association of India.

The Government, on its part, will do everything to remove all the hurdles coming in the way of growth of telecommunication, the Minister said adding ‘but the operators also must reciprocate from their side.’

Replying to industry’s demand that the Government should reduce the licence fee and allow BSNL to share the infrastructure especially for the rural areas, Mr Maran said, “Don’t waste your time in Delhi making rounds to the ministry… Go to the rural are as and connect India. We, on our part, will do everything to see that all hurdles are removed one by one.”

Maran also launched low price cellular handset of Motorola costing about Rs 1,500. – PTI

BPL Mobile in talks to sell up to 40% stake

India’s privately owned BPL Mobile Communications Ltd. is negotiating to sell up to 40 percent stake to a strategic partner to help boost its business in the world’s fastest growing cellular market, the company said, reports Reuters. India’s mobile services industry, with more than 50 million users and growing rapidly helped by rock-bottom call rates of about 2 U.S. cents a minute, has attracted investors from funds to large global service providers. “We have identified a few partners with whom we are in dialogue,” Chief Executive Officer Sandip Basu told a news conference. “The deal can happen any time.” BPL, which aims to invest $143 million on expansion this year, was in talks with at least three possible partners, including a foreign company, another official said.

bpl
India’s privately owned BPL Mobile Communications Ltd. is negotiating to sell up to 40 percent stake to a strategic partner to help boost its business in the world’s fastest growing cellular market, the company said, reports Reuters. India’s mobile services industry, with more than 50 million users and growing rapidly helped by rock-bottom call rates of about 2 U.S. cents a minute, has attracted investors from funds to large global service providers. “We have identified a few partners with whom we are in dialogue,” Chief Executive Officer Sandip Basu told a news conference. “The deal can happen any time.” BPL, which aims to invest $143 million on expansion this year, was in talks with at least three possible partners, including a foreign company, another official said. Basu said the strategic partner can buy a stake in BPL Cellular Holdings, the founder, or in BPL Mobile Communications that provides cellular services in Bombay, or in BPL Mobile Cellular Ltd., which operates in three other telecoms circles.
“Ideally the strategic partner could pick up stake in the holding company, but it could be in the operating companies as well,” Basu said. Indian founders own 60 percent of the holding company, with the remaining 40 percent held by funds such as Commonwealth Development Corp. and American International Group.
SOURCE:Telecompaper

Yahoo! goes mobile on Nokia smartphones

Nokia, the global leader in mobility, and Yahoo!, the number one global internet brand, today announced an agreement that allows millions of Nokia smartphone users to stay informed, entertained and in touch through Yahoo!’s rapidly developing internet services.

yahoo
A wide selection of Yahoo! Internet Services pre-installed on Nokia Series 60 devices
Espoo, Finland – Nokia, the global leader in mobility, and Yahoo!, the number one global internet brand, today announced an agreement that allows millions of Nokia smartphone users to stay informed, entertained and in touch through Yahoo!’s rapidly developing internet services. Yahoo! data communications services such as e-mail, Yahoo! entertainment services such as ring tones, wallpapers and downloadable games and Yahoo! Search for Mobile, will be the first set of services available through Nokia devices based on Series 60, the industry-leading smartphone platform.

“Access to information, entertainment and the ability to stay in touch when and where you want is at the heart of our vision of a mobile connected life,” said Harry Santamäki, Vice President, Strategy and Business Development, Nokia Multimedia. “Our agreement with Yahoo! is a progressive step in facilitating the adoption of an online lifestyle: we are providing consumers with a familiar way of accessing the internet and Yahoo! email through their mobile devices, with the added convenience of content downloads on the go.”

Juha Varelius, VP & MD of Yahoo! Mobile said: “With consumers’ lives across the world becoming increasingly centered around mobile communications, this new international relationship between Yahoo! and Nokia is a great way for people to have the Yahoo! internet experience on their Nokia phone and benefit from a range of essential services on the go.”

Nokia is the first handset manufacturer with Symbian-based products to distribute Yahoo! services for consumers in such a large number of European and Asian markets, including Australia, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Spain and the United Kingdom. The first Nokia devices with Yahoo! internet services are the Nokia 6680, Nokia 6681 and the Nokia 6630. More devices will be announced on April 27. The existing Nokia 6680, Nokia 6681 and Nokia 6630 owners will be able to download similar applications over-the-air in the same markets starting from the second half of 2005.

iTunes Mobile Coming Soon in June

Think Secret is reporting that Apple is finishing up a version of iTunes music software for Mobile Phones. The software currently carries the name of iTunes Mobile 1.0 which has been in development since last year when Motorola and Apple teamed..

Think Secret is reporting that Apple is finishing up a version of iTunes music software for Mobile Phones. The software currently carries the name of iTunes Mobile 1.0 which has been in development since last year when Motorola and Apple teamed..
itunes
SOURCE:mobilemag
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MSN Video Service offers Video Downloads to Mobile Devices

Microsoft has launched a video download service primarily targeted for use on mobile devices. The MSN Video Downloads service offers daily television programming, entertainment clips, music videos, and other digital video content.

Microsoft has launched a video download service primarily targeted for use on mobile devices. The MSN Video Downloads service offers daily television programming, entertainment clips, music videos, and other digital video content for viewing on Smartphones, Pocket PCs, and Portable Media Centers.
ms mobile video
The service first appeared at CES this past January in Las Vegas, users were able to downloaded mobile formatted content to their PCs and then transfer it to their Windows Mobile software powered device.

The service is only available to US customers for a fee of $19.95 for one year. You must be using Windows XP, Internet Explorer 5.0+, and Windows Media Player 10 to get access to all MSN Video content available, including The Food Network, DIY Network, Home & Garden TV, Fox Sports, and MTV Networks to name a few.

SOURCE:mobilemag.com

Skype Coming To Mobile Phones

At the Voice On the Net (VON) conference in Toronto, Skype Technologies co-founder and CEO Niklas Zennstrom reported that a mobile version of Skype will be available this year…

At the Voice On the Net (VON) conference in Toronto, Skype Technologies co-founder and CEO Niklas Zennstrom reported that a mobile version of Skype will be available this year.

Skype is a free global telephony application that allows for VoIP communications, it currently runs on Mac OSX, Windows and Pocket PC, Skype plans to release a version for Embedded Linux, Symbian or Windows Mobile devices later this year.
Skype
“We will encourage hardware manufacturers to deploy Skype on their devices.?? said Zennstrom. SkypeMobile for mobile devices (our unofficial name for the new Skype) will be targeted to hardware manufacturers for integration into new dual-mode (GPRS + WiFi) mobile devices once made available to carriers. Our guess is that whichever manufacturer will adopt Skype first is the platform SkypeMobile will be released for.

Regulatory issues may slow Skypes deployment down, large telecommunication companies have huge pull when it comes to communication regulations. They earn billions of dollars each year from long distance calls, they also pay the government millions more in taxes each year. According to Zennstrom these companies will be the last ones to continue charging for long distance communications on a per call basis while other companies have started offering flat-rate services.

It may be hard convincing a manufacturer to allow Skype to be put on their device and be available right out of the box, the carriers will bitch and complain that it will cut their airtime revenues. Besides, what will stop them from removing the software once its in their hands? We know sneaky stuff like this has happened before.

Nokia deploys WCDMA 3G expansion for 3GIS in Sweden

Nokia provides WCDMA radio equipment, rollout and care services for expanded network operations

NOKIA PRESS RELEASE April 25, 2005

Nokia provides WCDMA radio equipment, rollout and care services for expanded network operations

Espoo, Finland – Nokia has signed a contract extension with 3G Infrastructure Services AB (3GIS) to expand the Swedish operator’s WCDMA 3G radio network, providing improved network coverage and capacity across Sweden. The 3GIS network is the world’s first shared 3G network, and it is planned to serve around 70% of the Swedish population. Nokia is the sole supplier for the network.

“Nokia’s strong commitment to our business and their continued and dedicated effort to provide 3GIS with high quality service were decisive criteria in this selection,” says Jan Edhäll, Chief Executive Officer, 3G Infrastructure Services AB. “We are confident that with Nokia we can continue to build out and operate our network efficiently.”

“We are proud to extend our relationship with 3GIS with this new phase of delivery of world class WCDMA equipment, and are confident that the Nokia team will continue to provide excellent support to 3GIS in the future,” says Bob Bird, Vice President, Networks, Nokia.

In addition to network equipment, Nokia is providing a range of deployment services, such as implementation services and roll-out project management, as well as operation services, including software maintenance, Help Desk, emergency support, hardware services, and spare part management.

3G Infrastructure Services AB is a joint venture set up by telecom operators Hi3G Access and Vodafone Sweden in order to share network infrastructure during the build-out of 3G UMTS networks in Sweden. 3G Infrastructure Services AB’s will build and operate a network that covers 70% of the Swedish population. Hi3G Access and Vodafone Sweden have equal stakes in the joint venture. Each partner in the joint venture has been granted 3G licenses to provide 3G services to almost 100% of the Swedish population.

Symbian announces Symbian 9

Symbian key strategic focus is to ensure Symbian OS is adopted as a platform for the development of higher volume and lower cost, advanced phones for 2.5G and 3G networks around the world.

Symbian’s key strategic focus is to ensure Symbian OS is adopted as a platform for the development of higher volume and lower cost, advanced phones for 2.5G and 3G networks around the world.

Symbain
Symbian OS v9 helps lower Symbian OS licensee development costs and accelerate time to market for smaller, less expensive and even more capable Symbian OS smartphones.

As a robust, secure, open and standards-based platform, Symbian OS v9 will support network operators’ cost-effective deployment of revenue-generating services, content and applications.

Symbian OS licensees have phones based on Symbian OS v9 in development, with product launches anticipated during the second half of 2005.

Key enhancements in Symbian OS v9 include:

Enabling multimedia phones – Symbian OS v9 supports Bluetooth stereo headsets, USB mass storage, advanced audio mixing and playback, as well as the latest MPEG and OMA DRM standards.

Enhanced support for 3D graphics, multimedia and graphics acceleration as well as support for different screen sizes and orientations, and simultaneous multiple displays.

Managing Symbian OS phones – Using OMA-compliant Device Management solutions, network operators and enterprise IS managers will be able to access a user’s phone over the air to deploy new network services, capabilities or applications, or to diagnose a problem, as well as to audit applications installed on a phone.

Supporting the Enterprise – Symbian OS v9 provides new enterprise functions such as enhanced filtering and sorting of IMAP email, as well as new group scheduling capabilities, including accepting meeting invitations from standard PIM applications such as Lotus Notes or Microsoft Outlook.

Even better phone performance – Symbian OS v9 supports the latest generation of ARM-based processors that will enable faster and more powerful Symbian OS phones with improved battery life.

Nokia: 53.8 million handsets in the 1Q 2005

Nokia has published its sales and earnings report of the 1Q 2005. Nokia’s first-quarter 2005 net sales increased to €7.4 billion, a 17% rise compared with the year-ago quarter. Net profit amounted to €863 million, a 18% rise against the 1Q 2004.

For the 1Q 2005 the total mobile device sales volume achieved by the Mobile Phones, Multimedia and Enterprise Solutions business groups reached 53.8 million units (world market volumes for the same period reached an estimated 170 million units).

Nokia has published its sales and earnings report of the 1Q 2005. Nokia’s first-quarter 2005 net sales increased to €7.4 billion, a 17% rise compared with the year-ago quarter. Net profit amounted to €863 million, a 18% rise against the 1Q 2004.

For the 1Q 2005 the total mobile device sales volume achieved by the Mobile Phones, Multimedia and Enterprise Solutions business groups reached 53.8 million units (world market volumes for the same period reached an estimated 170 million units).
Nokia mobile device volume by geographic area

Nokia mobile device volume by geographic area
Million units 1Q 2005 1Q 2004 Change, % 4Q 2004
Europe, Middle Asia and Europe 27.4 21.6 27 32.8
China 7.1 4.2 69 5.9
Asia Pacific 10.6 7.4 44 10.4
North America 4.3 6.5 -33 8.0
Latin America 4.4 5.0 -12 9.0
Total 53.8 44.7 20 66.1

Nokia’s own smartphone volumes grew to 5.4 million units, compared with 1.8 million units in the 1Q 2004 (the total industry volume for the same period reached an estimated 10 million units).

Nokia’s outlook for 2005 is some 740 million of mobile terminals to be sold. As for the 2Q 2005 Nokia group net sales are expected to be in the range of € 7.9 billion to €8.2 billion.

3G Adoption and Faster Handset Replacement in Asia-Pacific Are Inevitable

Asia-Pacific will remain the largest and fastest growing regional handset market during the next 5 years and should be prioritized.

Asia-Pacific will remain the largest and fastest growing regional handset market during the next 5 years and should be prioritized. 3G devices will dominate through natural replacement and supply-side product lifecycles.

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Kenyans Text Messaging Their Way to Jobs

In the rural parts of Kenya, jobseekers wishing to use the Internet used to have to travel long distances to the nearest town with a cyber cafe.

NAIROBI, Kenya (Reuters) – In the rural parts of Kenya, jobseekers wishing to use the Internet used to have to travel long distances to the nearest town with a cyber cafe.

That changed last year with the creation of OneWorld International, a Kenyan firm offering a mobile phone text messaging service that advertises jobs and allows candidates to apply from wherever they are.

SOURCE :Reuters
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Motorola and Nokia outsell Samsung in cameraphone market

According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, 257 million camera phones were shipped worldwide, representing 38% of total handset sales, in 2004. This was up sharply from 84 million, or 16% of total, in 2003.

According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, 257 million camera phones were shipped worldwide, representing 38% of total handset sales, in 2004. This was up sharply from 84 million, or 16% of total, in 2003.

Camera phones outsold digital still cameras by almost 4 to 1, reaching just 68 million units globally in 2004. Sales grew 40 percent annually, from 49 million units in 2003.

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