Tag Archives: technology

Virgin Mobile plans to roll out more mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) in North and Sub-Saharan Africa

Virgin Mobile plans to roll out more mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) in North and Sub-Saharan Africa as it looks to take advantage of the huge opportunities in providing such services.

Mikkel Vinter, chief executive officer (CEO) of Virgin Mobile Middle East and Africa, told the MVNOs Industry Summit in Sandton, Johannesburg today the company was looking to tap further into a market set to boom, following its launch in South Africa in 2006.

Vinter said Deloitte figures showed there are 1,200 MVNOs active globally, 800 of which are in Europe and less than 10 in Africa, which offers a huge opportunity to companies such as Virgin.

“The MVNO is still in its infancy in other markets. So it is still very early days. But let’s not cry over that, it is an opportunity,” he said.

“The potential for Africa is at least 500 MVNOs over the next 10 years. What a fantastic opportunity. I don’t think there is any other market out there that has the same opportunity.”

He said the African market was attractive from a demographic perspective, as well as the fact Africa is still seeing growth in mobile penetration, which has become stagnant or even declined in Europe.

“We’ve seen how the mobile businesses have literally driven revolution in Egypt for example, and there is no doubt that in Africa the mobile space is very high on the list of technologies changing the continent,” Vinter said.

Vinter said, however, that MVNOs needed to demonstrate they could add value for operators.

“You need to prove as an MVNO that you are really bringing something to the party that the operator is not able to do,” he said. “We see the two most important opportunities being in the youth and ethnic spaces.”

Virgin has launched FRiENDi Mobile in the Middle East and Asia in order to appeal to the ethnic segment, which comprises a great number of people living away from their country of birth, while Virgin Mobile is targeting the youth market.

Vinter did identify some challenges from operating in Africa, but said Virgin Mobile was not put off by them.

“The continent is very diverse. There are big countries, there are small countries, there are wealthy countries, there are poor countries. This means that your proposition must be very flexible,” he said.

“There is a heavy government involvement still in the telecoms sector. In many markets telecoms is a strategic industry and the government takes a lot of interest, from a revenue perspective but also from a security perspective.

“It is still early days in telecoms liberalisation.”

Source: humanipo.com http://bit.ly/1lmkZZR

IDA denies SingTel full regulatory relief

4 of 7 appeals over dominant licensee obligations rejected

By WINSTON CHAI

(SINGAPORE) After deliberating for 18 months, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) is standing firm on its decision to deny Singapore Telecom full exemption from government regulations designed to keep the country’s largest operator in check.

The telecommunications regulator has officially turned down four of SingTel’s seven appeals to be freed from so-called ‘dominant licensee obligations’ relating to the provision of business telephony services.

Under Singapore’s Telecom Competition Code, SingTel is subject to these stringent operating rules in areas where it is deemed to have a commanding market presence. The conditions were put in place to ensure SingTel deals with other telecommunications licensees in a fair and non-discriminatory manner. For example, it requires SingTel to offer other service providers access to parts of its infrastructure under prices and conditions set by the government.

SingTel submitted two appeals for regulatory relief to IDA in October 2007. The first ‘customer segment request’ applied to corporate clients who spend more than $250,000 a year on telecom services, while the second ‘market-based request’ was for six business telephony services.

IDA reached a final decision this week after three rounds of public feedback and interviews with other industry players over the past 18 months.

‘SingTel’s request is far broader than its three previous exemption requests,’ IDA’s deputy director-general of telecom and post Andrew Haire said in a letter to SingTel on Tuesday.

‘If IDA were to grant SingTel’s request in its entirety, SingTel would be relieved from dominant licensee regulation for all telecommunication services it provides to government and business customers who spend at least $250,000 a year on telecommunication services.’

Full exemption in this customer segment would mean that SingTel would be unshackled from dominant licensee stipulations for most of the services it provides to businesses with a telecom budget below $250,000, he added.

Given these considerations, IDA decided to reject SingTel’s first customer-segment request. However, the regulator will grant SingTel regulatory relief for three of the six market segments contained in its second request.

According to Mr Haire, the backhaul and terrestrial international private leased circuits (IPLC) segments ‘are now effectively competitive’ and SingTel will be freed from its dominant licensee obligations in these markets. In addition, the regulator will continue to exempt SingTel in the international managed data services market.

These exemptions, however, will not be extended to the remaining three Singapore-centric business segments detailed by SingTel.

‘IDA has concluded that because effective competition has not yet taken root in the business local telephony service, LLC (local leased circuit) and local managed data service, IDA will not grant exemption in those markets,’ Mr Haire said.

The rulings are expected to kick in by June 16. When contacted, SingTel did not confirm whether it will appeal to IDA. ‘We are reviewing the decision. However, we welcome IDA’s decision to relieve us from dominant licensee obligations in respect to the terrestrial IPLC market and the backhaul market,’ a SingTel spokesman said.

Source: The Business Times

Launch of MSI X-SLIM X340

 

On 1 June, I was invited to the media launch of MSI X340 at Serenity Restaurant in Vivocity (thanks to Sally from CR MEDIA for the invitation).

MSI gained popularity in Singapore with its MSI U100 which was one of the more popular netbooks around. Now, MSI is launching with another exciting product that will grab the hearts of fashionistas who also look for functionality.

Welcome MSI X340, the latest addition to the X-SLIM series of notebooks. As the name suggests, the X340 is incredibly slim. It measures only 19.8 mm at its thickest point. The sleekness of X340 makes it a sure head-turner. And did I tell you it weighs merely 1.3 kg? (1.3kg includes the weight of the 4-cell battery that comes along with X340. You can also get an 8-cell battery if you want longer battery life.)

MSI launch 002

MSI launch 003

For a notebook that weighs 1.3kg and is only 19.8mm thick, X340 does pack a punch. It runs on Intel® Core™2 Solo processor ULV SU3500 (1.4GHz), sports 2 USB ports, 1 HDMI port, 1 VGA port. All your regular connectivity options like Bluetooth and wireless LAN 802.11b/g/n are available. X340 is also great for watching videos with its 16:9 screen.

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MSI launch 039 

In conclusion, this notebook is certainly a good option for those who want something slim and light enough to carry around without strain, something that looks sleek enough to make others look with envy, and something with more processing power than Atom-based devices. No doubt, fashion and function can exist together.

 

(blog post written by Poisonvine)

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SMAATO Press: Smaato releases new white paper on Mobile Advertising Optimization

Smaato releases new white paper on Mobile Advertising Optimization

NEW YORK, June 1, 2009 – Smaato, the leading global mobile Ad Optimizer, released today its new white paper on Mobile Advertising: “Higher revenues with mobile Ad Optimization & global Ad Network aggregation.” The white paper can be downloaded at www.smaato.com.

The white paper describes the opportunities mobile publishers and developers have to monetize their inventory world wide. It explores how different mobile fill rates can be expected from mobile ad networks and what types of pricing tiers are out there for mobile inventory. It also explains how ad revenue optimization works, and helps to realize the true potential of mobile inventory.

“Publishers of mobile websites & developers of cool mobile apps face the growing challenge of matching their expanding global popularity with the daunting task of filling their ad inventory associated with those very services. Smaato identified this issue many moons ago, and is capitalizing on the provision of global mobile ad optimization using its SOMA platform. Smaato has come from nowhere and gained significant experience and footprint in this section of mobile advertising and marketing in a very short, yet incredibly successful, period” states Nick Lane, Chief Researcher / writer, mobileSQUARED.

The information featured in the white paper is based on the experience of Smaato’s ad ops and engineering teams over the last years in order to boost mobile ad revenues and give mobile publishers the opportunity to maximize their Ad ARPU.

“The buzz in the mobile advertising space is around delivering the right ad to the right person – even better if this occurs in the right context. But the real issue publishers face is how to identify – in real-time – the right ad network to deliver the right results,” added Peggy Anne Salz, Chief Analyst at MSearchGroove (MSG). “Smaato, a global company whose own evolution shows its grasp of the key issues impacting the mobile advertising business ecosystem at all levels, has gained significant traction through its ability to dynamically identify the ad networks that monetize publishers’ inventory best. This innovation is core to Smaato‘s competitive advantage and pivotal in moving the mobile advertising industry to the next level.”

Meet Smaato at MMA New York: Harald Neidhardt, CMO & Co-Founder of Smaato, will moderate a panel at the MMA Forum: International Innovation in Mobile – What are the trends for the future? June 3rd, 12:30 – 12:50pm.

Press contact Smaato Inc.
Harald Neidhardt
CMO & Co-Founder
www.smaato.com
harald@smaato.com
Smaato Inc.
3 Lagoon Drive, Suite 170
Redwood Shores, CA 94065
Phone (USA): +1 (650) 286 11 98
Phone (Europe) +49 (40) 35 71 83 88

About Smaato Inc.
Smaato is a pioneering mobile advertising company that operates the mobile ad optimization platform called SOMA (Smaato Open Mobile Advertising) and partners with mobile publishers, developers, ad networks and operators.

SOMA’s unique feature is the aggregation of multiple leading ad networks globally to maximize mobile advertising ARPU in more than 200 countries. SOMA can be easily integrated with ad networks, ad inventory owners (publishers, developers and operators) and 3rd party ad technology providers.

Smaato is an active member of the Mobile Marketing Association, the dot.mobi Advisory Group and the German Digital Media Association BVDW. Smaato received a Top 100 Private Company Award by AlwaysOn Media (2009 & 2007) and was an Andrew Seybold Choice Awards finalist at CTIA 2008 for best Newcomer, among other awards.

Smaato Inc. is based in Redwood Shores, California. The privately held company was founded in 2005 by an experienced International management team. The European headquarters are in Hamburg, Germany.

About mobileSQUARED
mobileSQUARED offers the very latest bespoke research, analysis, forecasting, and insight on the mobile data market. From in-depth reports, to agile research in as little as 48 hours, business model analysis, unique market data, and contract publishing, our team of industry experts deliver it. Our complimentary research newsletter is published every six weeks, which offers in-depth analysis on key areas of the mobile data market – sectors, companies, territories and individuals. For more information, please visit www.mobilesquared.co.uk

About MSearchGroove
MSearchGroove is a leading source of in-depth analysis and commentary on mobile search, mobile advertising, and social media. Peggy Anne Salz, Founder and Chief Analyst, leads a committed team of industry experts, undertaking custom research and consulting projects. Her most recent series of practical how-to white papers covers the basics of mobile advertising and mobile analytics, indisputably establishing her as a mobile advertising authority. For more information, please visit: www.msearchgroove.com

Notebook that fits nicely in your pocket

How could it be possible? For those who have been very aware of the latest development in the computer industry.  You probably have known that SONY Singapore has announced the the launch of their latest notebook in town this week – VAIO P “Pocket style PC”. The new VAIO P “Pocket style PC” is an 8-inch full-featured notebook PC fitted into a pocket size that’s less than 20mm thin and is about the size of a business envelope.   

When I first hold on to VAIO P, it feels like you are mantling with a toy. It is very light (weighs 594g with a solid-state drive and 620g with a hard disk drive) for a notebook and can be comfortably handled with a single hand. Ladies will love this device as it can be easily slip into a handbag while they are out for shopping.

Despite its small size, performance has not been compromised. Although it is run on Microsoft VISTA, I am surprised that most of the applications have been able to load relatively fast. Anyway, XP is still available in the market if you are not used to VISTA.

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The design of the keyboard is pretty good given its small size. I appreciate that Sony has recognized the importance of typing experience. Extension of the keyboard to the edges of the chassis and maximizing of typing space do help men with big fingers like mine. However, it appears that the screen looks significantly shorter and smaller than the keyboard. It does not look visually appealing to people like me who have been used to working on normal-size laptop.  

It does not come to me as a surprise when VAIO P has connectivity features such as built-in wireless LAN 802.11b/g/Draft n webcam. The interesting application is the Instant Mode that directly launches into Sony’s Xross Media Bar interface for quick boot up and access to music, video, photos and the Web. We tried to quick boot the system on the spot and it took about 30-40s to launch Instant Mode; probably due to the operation system installed in the device.

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The VAIO P is almost as powerful as a normal-size laptop. Since it is run on Window VISTA, it supports other software. Additionally, there is also a windows arrangement utility preinstalled for easy organising of all open documents or websites, all with a single touch. The disappointment is short battery life of 3 hours (bundled battery). It is certainly not enough if you carry this device out for a whole day. 

The new VAIO P is available in 4 different colours – Black, Green, Red and White and will be priced from S$1,299

For press release and specification of this product, please go here

Recycle your unwanted IT Products with HP Green Campaign

Guys, 

HP (Stock quote: HPQ) is organizing a recycling campaign this coming Saturday. If you have old and unwanted HP products, you can head down to HP Booth at Yu Hua Village to trade with a new ones under terms and conditions. This initiaitve is spearheaded by National Environment Agency.  

Date: 15 November, Saturday 

Venue: Blk 252, Yu Hua Village@ Jurong East Area (Main Site) 

Time: 11am – 7pm 

For details: Please visit the HP website here or NEA website here