Archive for June, 2002

WAIRARAPA UNHAPPY WITH SPEEDS – JUNE 2002

Saturday, June 1st, 2002

The majority of Internet users in the Wairarapa are unhappy with connection speeds, according to a recent survey — one of five funded by the Economic development Ministry to assess demand for regional broadband. Eighty-nine per cent of farmers, 61% of householders and 62.9% of commuters were dissatisfied with speeds that average 29Kpbs. More than a third of the commuters category believed they would be able to work from home for at least part of the week if they had upwards of a 128Kb/s connection.

See also: New Zealand – Broadband Market – Providers and Solutions.

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PROFILE ON INTERNODE’S XDSL COVERAGE – JUNE 2002

Saturday, June 1st, 2002

Internode is a sister company of Agile Communications (see separate report) and is the only South Australian non-Telstra company to provide state-wide broadband coverage. The company started deploying ADSL and SDSL services in Mt Gambier, Millicent, Penola, Port Pirie, Whyalla and Port Lincoln at the end of 2001. This is in addition to its Adelaide, Sydney and Melbourne broadband coverage areas which have also been extended in 2002. Internode aims to roll out its residential ADSL service in Sydney, Melbourne, regional NSW and regional Victoria in April 2002.

By the second quarter of 2002, Internode covered the following metropolitan areas with ADSL and SDSL services:
Adelaide (Personal and Business services);
Alice Springs (Personal and Business services);
Darwin (Personal and Business services);
Melbourne (Business services, Personal from April/May 2002);
Sydney (Business services, Personal from April/May 2002).

The company offers the same services in the following regions:
South Australia (Personal and Business services);
Northern Territory (Personal and Business services);
Victoria (Business services now, Personal from April/May 2002);
New South Wales (Business services now, Personal from April/May 2002).

The company plans to extend its coverage of metropolitan areas, townships, states and regional areas.

See also:
Global – Broadband – xDSL Market
Global – Broadband – xDSL – Technology

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QUADTEL’S EXPANSION INTO CHINA – JUNE 2002

Saturday, June 1st, 2002

Quadtel was established in 2000 as a broadband distributor hoping to capture the developing xDSL market. In December 2001, the company indicated it was expanding its activity into China through the acquisition of a 7.5% stake in the JiTong broadband network, one of two full scale data networks competing on a national level among only five network service providers licensed by the Government of The Peoples Republic of China. In addition to the equity interest, Quadtel will become the exclusive supplier of equipment for the network. The project is based in the Ningbo region on the east coast of China and is a joint venture between GWT Communication Network Co Ltd and JiTong Communications Company Limited, one of China’s largest and most progressive telecommunications company’s.

Quadtel plans to use the JiTong infrastructure and a wireless local loop to connect a customer base of 200,000 businesses within the Ningbo region. Some 2,600 businesses were scheduled to be connected within the first quarter of 2002. The remaining subscriber points for the guaranteed customer base will be deployed in stages over a two period after the initial three months of operations. In February 2002, Quadtel was organising a share issue to help finance the Chinese project.

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3G ISSUES – JUNE 2002

Saturday, June 1st, 2002

Despite the hype and costly licensing procedures for 3G in Europe, we believe a number of key issues remain. The key issues that remain to be addressed, throughout Europe, and despite the cost savings move to network sharing by some countries, include:
Content – we don’t believe there is a ‘killer application’;
Handset delivery – the lack of suitable and interoperable handsets dogged the launch of WAP across Europe, and it has stymied GPRS, and the same issue is expected to hamper 3G;
Handset subsidies – advanced wireless data handsets are more costly than the commonplace voice-only GSM handsets, which became so common partly because the handsets were subsidised by vendors and operators, and this is needed to make expensive 3G handsets affordable to the masses;
Migrating 2G users to 3G – the failure of WAP and disappointments with GPRS indicate the lack of demand for 2.5G handsets and services, leaving 3G operators with the problem of persuading their large 2G customer bases to migrate to the supposedly more advanced and definitely more expensive 3G arena;
Prepaid users – these customers are notorious for their low ARPUs, but they make up around 80% of all new mobile subscribers in Europe, so how then to accommodate this demographic under 3G.

See also:
Europe – Wireless Communications Market, Regulatory and Technology Overview.

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BELGIUM DTV STALLS – JUNE 2002

Saturday, June 1st, 2002

A highly anticipated digital TV project was launched in Belgium in February 2002 but forced to stop operating in late May 2002 due to technical problems. The e-VRT project cost €8 million and was co-financed by Belgacom and the Flanders public broadcaster VRT. Over 100 homes were involved in interactive TV services for a two-year period.

The project was noteworthy for a number of reasons, not least of which because it broadcast using terrestrial signals despite Belgium being one of Europe’s more cable TV penetrated nations. In addition, the project used only open source software, such as such as XML, HTML and MPEG standards.

See also:
Belgium – Wireless Communications and Broadcasting.

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