Posts tagged ‘Vodafone’
Financial Times Deutschland reports that mobile operators Vodafone Germany and T-Mobile Deutschland may back down from their position that they would not sell Nokia handsets with the Voice-over-IP (VoIP) programme Skype included. The service currently allows users to make telephone calls for free, or more cheaply than traditional telephone providers. Both operators have said that they are looking into offering special tariffs for mobile VoIP use instead of blocking the services, which have been available for their mobile internet customers for six weeks.
T-Mobile announced in early April 2009 it would not allow its customers to use the new Skype application designed specifically for Apple’s iPhone. T-Mobile spokesperson, Alexander von Schmettow, said: ‘It is clearly stated in our customer contracts that such services may not be used. There are two reasons for this – because the high level of traffic would hinder our network performance, and because if the Skype programme didn’t work properly, customers would make us responsible for it.’
According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, global Android smartphone shipments will grow 900 percent in 2009. Healthy support from operators, vendors and developers is driving adoption. Apple iPhone OS will be the next fastest-growing smartphone operating system in 2009, with a 79 percent growth rate. Tom Kang, Senior Analyst at Strategy Analytics, said, “We forecast global Android smartphone shipments to grow an impressive 900 percent annually during 2009. The Android mobile operating system from Google gained early traction in the United States in the second half of 2008 and it is gradually spreading its presence into Europe and Asia during 2009. Android is expanding from a low base and it is consequently outgrowing the iPhone OS from Apple, which we estimate will grow at a relatively lower 79 percent annually in 2009.”Neil Mawston, Director at Strategy Analytics, added, “Android has fast been winning healthy support among operators, vendors and developers. A relatively low-cost licensing model, its semi-open-source structure and Google’s support for cloud services have encouraged companies such as HTC, Motorola, Samsung, T Mobile, Vodafone and others to support the Android operating system. Android is now in a good position to become a top-tier player in smartphones over the next two to three years.”
Ghana’s Minister-Nominee for Communications Haruna Iddrisu said yesterday he would forge ahead quickly with plans to usher in mobile number portability (MNP) to improve consumer choice and drive down prices. Iddrisu reportedly made the promise when he was being vetted by the Parliamentary Appointments Committee for the position of Minister of Communications. ‘It is time for the regulation regime to make it possible for mobile phone users to be able to migrate from one network to the other with the whole of the phone numbers, including the network code and I think that it is about time the National Communications Authority (NCA) brought MNP on,’ he said.
In a separate story, Ghana Telecom (GT) says its mobile arm GT-OneTouch will install SIM phones in 250 rural communities across the country by July 2009. GT says its new majority shareholder Vodafone has spent the last six months investing heavily in its networks, services and staff to improve telecoms services in the country.
Romania’s telecoms regulator ANC has revealed that it received no final bids for the two 3.6GHz licences that are on offer, despite receiving preliminary applications from six firms. ‘Signals from the market indicate that the main problem with these frequencies is their price, which the operators find too high. We will propose the Government a lower licence fee and then re-launch the granting process, as soon as possible’, ANC President Liviu Nistoran said in a statement. The licences will be used to provide WiMAX wireless broadband services; a third concession has already been handed to SNR in return for it agreeing to hand back the spectrum it already held in the 3.6GHz-3.8GHz band. The six companies that bought Terms of Reference for the tender were: Asesoft International, Comcore Management, Cosmote Romanian Mobile Telecommunications, Media Sat, RCS&RDS and Vodafone Romania.
Vodafone and Hutchison Whampoa have announced plans to merge their Australian networks to form a single mobile operator. Both companies will own 50% of the joint venture – which will retain the Vodafone brand name, although they retain the rights to the “three” brand as well. To equalise the value difference between the respective businesses, Vodafone will receive a deferred payment of A$500 million (US$337 million) from the joint venture company, VHA (Vodafone Hutchison Australia).
Utilising existing network arrangements and planned network build, VHA will operate a mobile network with at least 95% population coverage, of which 63% will have access to 3G services. Upon completion of additional network roll outs, VHA’s 3G population coverage is planned to increase to 95%.Based on figures from the Mobile World subscriber tracker, the merged firm would ended last September with a shade over 6 million customers – representing 26.3% of the market. It will still be the smallest of (now) three operators in the country – close behind Optus’ 7.4 million and Telstra’s 9.5 million customers.
Vodafone Essar, the UK-based group’s Indian subsidiary, is in the process of a raising a INR100 billion (USD2 billion) bridge loan to finance its participation in India’s forthcoming 3G spectrum auctions. According to banking sources, Vodafone has appointed SBI Capital Markets to arrange the loan from a range of banks. “Canara Bank has approved INR7.5 billion for Vodafone, and the rest of the money will come from other banks,” a source said. An unnamed Vodafone source added that the financing would also be used for network expansion. However, Vodafone Essar declined to offcially comment on the story.
According to the report, there is still no official date for the start of India’s long-awaited 3G auctions, which are now thought unlikely to happen prior to India’s general elections, which need to take place before May. A Mumbai-based telecom analyst added that Vodafone would have little trouble raising the INR100 billion, suggesting that the operator should be able to secure an interest rate of around 8.5 percent. India is a key market for Vodafone, accounting for around 65 percent of the 9.7 million net new customers it added in its most recent.
Vodafone is developing a distribution strategy that will see Yes Telecom at its core, according to head of Vodafone UK distribution and new Yes Telecom chief, Tanny Price. Price informed distributors in a letter that the company had been working on an ‘exciting strategy’ for 2009/10 to ‘generate additional opportunities for our indirect channels in the converging areas of the market’.Price said: ‘Building on the expertise and skills in Manchester, we are looking to invigorate the channel and invest in value by working more closely together with our partners, maximizing the opportunities that lie ahead.
This drive to raise the bar is testament to Vodafone’s commitment to the indirect channel. It is a fundamental part of the Enterprise business and we have strong plans for its growth through selecting the best channels, of which Yes Telecom is key. The Vodafone business will transform in this rapidly evolving market, moving from pure voice and data to a unified communications environment.