Huawei has demonstrated a Turbo Button solution for dramatically boosting delivered LTE speeds with a simple push of a button on a mobile app.
Turbo Button allows mobile subscribers to easily accelerate their data speeds on demand from 1 Mb/s up to 70 Mb/s over a set period of time with just one touch on a downloadable app. The service is especially useful for improving the experience of high-speed web surfing, online gaming, large file uploads and downloads, and HD video streaming among other bandwidth intensive services.
The demo was conducted by Indonesian mobile operator XL Axiata at the recent 2013 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in Indonesia and made exclusive use of Huawei’s Networker solution for LTE. XL
The uptake of 4G-LTE is expected to grow to pass one billion by 2017, according to a new study by GSMA Intelligence. This translates to one in eight of the more than eight billion total mobile connections forecast by that point, up from 176 million LTE connections at the end of 2013. And around half of these are expected to be in Asia.
Nearly 500 LTE networks are forecast to be in service across 128 countries, roughly double the number of live LTE networks today.
“Since the launch of the first commercial 4G-LTE networks in late 2009 we are seeing deployments accelerate across the globe,” said Hyunmi Yang, Chief Strategy Officer of GSMA. “Our new report highlights a number of factors that are driving LTE growth: the timely allocation of suitable spectrum to mobile operators; the availability of affordable LTE devices; and the implementation of innovative tariffs that encourage adoption of high-speed data services. Mobile operators in both developed and developing markets are seeing LTE services contributing to a significant increase in ARPU.”
Jon Fredrik Baksaas, President and CEO of Telenor Group, has been elected as the new GSMA Chairman for the remainder of the current board term through December 2014.
Baksaas will oversee the strategic direction of the organisation, which represents nearly 800 of the world’s mobile operators, as well as 250 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem. He had served as Deputy Chairman since January 2011. He has worked in the telecom industry for 25 years and has been the CEO of Telenor since 2002.
“I look forward to working closely with the rest of the board, the GSMA team and our entire membership to advance important industry issues. It is truly inspiring to work in an industry that has such a profound and increasing impact on the people and societies we serve,” said Baksaas.
The adoption of mobile money is increasing with 208 live deployments for unbanked services in 83 countries, compared to 178 in 74 countries as of January, asccording to GSMA’s 2013Mobile Money Adoption Survey. Another 117 deployments are planned over the coming months.
The report underscores the critical role of mobile and mobile network operators (MNOs) in driving the adoption of convenient and affordable financial services among unbanked and under-banked individuals around the world.
“The impressive and encouraging results of the study demonstrate that mobile money services are increasingly reaching scale and are becoming even more essential in providing convenient and affordable financial services to the underserved,” said Chris Locke, Managing Director, GSMA Mobile for Development.
GSMA has launched GSMA Intelligence, a powerful new data and analysis resource for the mobile industry. The online portal provides a comprehensive set of data points, covering every mobile operator in every country worldwide, alongside market insights produced by a team of experienced industry analysts and experts.
“The mobile industry is one of the most dynamic and transformative technology markets ever, evolving at an unprecedented pace,” said Anne Bouverot, Director General of GSMA. “This dynamism presents many opportunities and challenges for players across the mobile ecosystem and the GSMA is in a unique position to provide the intelligence and insights that organisations require to drive future growth and innovation. We’re excited to be addressing this key issue with today’s launch of GSMA Intelligence.”
Women in developing countries represent a significant underserved market and commercial opportunity for mobile financial service providers.
According to the study by the GSMA mWomen Programme and Visa, more than two billion people worldwide, the majority of whom are women, lack access to basic financial services.
The study, entitled, Unlocking the Potential: Women and Mobile Financial Services in Emerging Markets, focused on women in Indonesia, Kenya, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, and Tanzania. It was undertaken to gain additional insight into how financial institutions and mobile network operators can better support the complex financial lives of women at the base of the pyramid.
GSMA has announced OneAPI Exchange, a new, flexible technical platform that will deliver network capabilities to mobile apps. This latest phase of the OneAPI global initiative, which facilitates closer collaboration between operators and developers, has been undertaken with leading mobile operators including AT&T, Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telefónica, and Vodafone. OneAPI Exchange will be operated by Apigee.
“The OneAPI Exchange promises to elevate the mobile app experience for consumers,” said Michael O’Hara, Chief Marketing Officer of GSMA. “By supporting closer operator-developer relationships and greater cross-carrier interoperability, the platform will lead to seamless access to exciting mobile apps with enhanced features. End users will benefit from operator services they already know and trust, such as billing, messaging and operator identity, embedded within the apps they choose.”
The new initiative incorporates the work undertaken by the Wholesale Application Community (WAC), which was integrated into the GSMA in July 2012. The OneAPI Exchange, which is currently in a working proof of concept form, improves that capability by giving operators the choice of providing developers with either their own customised application programming interfaces (APIs) or standardised APIs. This leads to better flexibility for operators to participate in the OneAPI Exchange programme, according to their own business objectives, while also providing benefits of scale and reach to their developers through API interoperability.
Mobile operator data revenues will overtake voice revenues globally by 2018, according to a new GSMA report. The mobile data explosion is being driven by a surge in demand for connected devices and machine-to-machine (M2M) communications and is transforming the socioeconomic future of people in developed and developing countries.
The increase in mobile operator data revenues is a global trend across both developed and emerging markets. In 2012, Japan became the first country where data revenues exceeded voice revenues, due largely to the availability of advanced mobile broadband networks and a higher adoption of the latest smartphones, tablets and connected devices.
Data growth has spurred significant advances in connected devices and M2M technologies globally. Four sectors in particular – health, automotive, education and smart cities – are building on the evolution of mobile broadband access and services.
Nearly half of the world’s population now uses mobile communications. The number of mobile subscribers now stands at 3.2 billion people and is expected to increase by another 700 million subscribers by 2017. The 4 billion-subscriber milestone will be reached in 2018, according to a new GSMA report.
“The Mobile Economy 2013”, which provides a comprehensive overview of the mobile industry today, outlines the key opportunities and challenges for the mobile industry over the next five years. Developed by the GSMA and A.T. Kearney, the wide-ranging study offers critical insights into the health of the mobile communications industry and details the global enablers needed to spur further investment and growth in the sector.
“Mobile is a vibrant and evolving industry at the heart of everyday life for billions of people around the world,” said Anne Bouverot, Director General of GSMA. “Mobile has gone beyond being a mere communications tool to one that provides life-enhancing, and in some cases life-saving, services to men, women and children. It’s exciting to look at the possibilities ahead of us as we connect the world’s population to the mobile Internet.”
ZTE has launched UniCare, a service solution developed specifically for mobile operators.
UniCare is an end-to-end integrated solution covering the whole network by offering operation assurance aimed at network performance management, service quality management and customer experience assurance, as well as operation consulting aimed at network, service and market development.
“Traditionally, technical services have focused on a specific area of an operator’s business, rather than the whole operation. As a result, they have failed to bring about improvements in operational efficiencies or user experience and have not delivered increased revenues or profits,” said Yang Jiaxiao, Vice President of ZTE. “The UniCare service solution overcomes these failures by providing mobile operators with an overall service assurance for their entire business.”
GSMA has published its first in-depth assessment of the impact of the mobile industry on the Arab States, highlighting the explosive growth of mobile services in the region. Based on research from Deloitte, the GSMA Arab States Mobile Observatory details strong regional market competition and falling handset prices, fuelling a 32 percent average annual growth in mobile connections over the past 10 years, soaring from 19 million connections in 2002 to 391 million in 2012.
While highlighting the extraordinary development of the region over the past decade, the report identifies fundamental challenges that put the continued growth of the sector at risk, including limited spectrum availability, high taxation and stifling regulation.
“Mobile communications in the Arab States have transformed society and fostered substantial growth in investment, innovation and productivity,” commented Tom Phillips, Chief Government and Regulatory Affairs Officer, GSMA. “However, there are far greater opportunities that the mobile industry can deliver for the region. Governments need to take action now to increase spectrum availability and stabilise the regulatory environment if they want to continue the momentum and realise mobile’s full potential.”
Mobile users in Singapore have been lamenting about poor 3G reception and dropped calls for a while. A check by the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) has confirmed that all three telcos fell short of meeting outdoor coverage standards.
M1, SingTel Mobile and StarHub Mobile have been fined S$10,000 each for failing to comply with IDA’s Quality of Service (QoS) standard for nation-wide outdoor areas for 3G mobile telephone services.
The results of the joint survey showed that the nation-wide outdoor service coverage for all three mobile operators was below the QoS standard of at least 99 percent, even though they performed well in providing general mobile coverage. Their respective performances were weaker at newly included testing areas such as housing estates/town centres, outdoor recreational areas, and above ground MRT tracks.
The GSMA held its first GSMA Connected Women conference in Europe, bringing together more than 250 telecommunications industry professionals to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing women in technology today. Through a range of keynote presentations and panel discussions, the GSMA Connected Women: Enriching the Mobile Ecosystem event explored how to attract, nurture and promote more female talent within the mobile industry, a sector that has revolutionised the lives of billions of people around the world.
“Women today comprise 40 per cent of the global workforce and account for more than half of university graduates, and yet we see only three to five per cent of senior management positions in technology being held by women,” said Anne Bouverot, Director General, GSMA. “This is a critical challenge that we must address immediately – as an industry, we will be at a disadvantage if we cannot attract and retain the most talented individuals, many of whom are women. The Connected Women event focuses attention on the many opportunities available to women in technology, and particularly in mobile, and how we can foster the next generation of business leaders.”
According to a Grant Thornton International business report issued earlier this year, women hold only 21 per cent of senior management positions globally across all industries and over the last 10 years, this number has remained largely unchanged. Most studies put the number of women in senior management positions in technology companies even lower, at around three per cent to five per cent. In the 2012 Fortune 500 rankings, the number of female CEOs was 18, up from 12 in 2011, but women still accounted for only four per cent of the ranking.