June 1, 2011
A new research report suggests that 3G will definitely catch the imagination of the Indian audiences by 2015. According to a new Wireless Intelligence study, the number of 3G subscriber connections in India will reach 400 million i.e. a 30% penetration. According to the report, the telecom operators are likely to invest $2.5 billion in building the new networks and rolling out 3G services in 2011. “Indian operators spent a combined $15 billion in acquiring Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) 3G spectrum at auction last year and are forecast to jointly invest a further $2.5 billion in building the new networks and rolling out 3G services in 2011,” The study notes that over 80 percent of 3G connections will be based on WCDMA in five years, with the remaining 20 percent on CDMA-based 3G networks.
The major challenge we see is the pricing. For 3G to penetrate to 400 million users it will need a combination of low cost + sachet based usage just like prepaid cards have done for the overall mobile penetration in India. The situation is complicated by the fact that no 3G operator is able to offer a nationwide service, which will require network sharing and roaming between operators. Pricing 3G services appropriately in a market where around 200 million prospective users live on less than US$2 a day is also set to be a major challenge. It is also believed that 3G services with restricted access rather than usage would see more uptake. Indian operators are betting on 3G services to stabilize ARPU (average revenue per user) and increase non-voice revenues to around the 30 percent mark in the coming year. “Even though it is not anticipated a price war in the 3G space, profitability will take time due to the high required investments and the current need for additional spectrum.” (IANS)
India, being one of the biggest international markets, can greatly drive adoption of 3G services as it continue to see the highest growth rates in mobile adoption. The release of higher frequency spectrums in 3G allows for the development of new technologies and applications. Services like MMS, video conferencing, gaming, GPS, m-Commerce applications like online shopping through 3G terminals, instantly arranging meetings based on applications like calendar synchronization, white board applications that can recognize several languages in handwriting, searching any store/outlet in the city through a 3G terminal, and remote home monitoring systems would be commonplace in a few years after the launch of 3G services. There will be huge demand for mobile number portability, presence and instant messaging, mobile TV and convergent communication, which would be consumer centric services. These applications offer considerable potentials for an improved life quality – and some fun.
This event will gather representatives from leading operators, service providers, handset manufacturers, content developers, regulators, analysts, consultants, game makers, music, mobile imagery, WAP and streaming audio & video to address the key issues of the technology.
It is with great pleasure that we invite you all to the “2nd Annual 3G SUMMIT-2011” and wish you all the very best.
Key themes discussed at this Summit
* Evaluating 3G launch & developing marketing strategies to achieve optimum revenue in India & South Asia
* What will be unique in the Indian 3G story? Will there be grassroots innovations here, maybe local apps? – Where will the largest penetration come from?
* Evaluating the market dynamics for operators and equipment vendors
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