India’s mobile-phone market has registered its first-ever decline in subscriber numbers, according to data recently published by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.
The regulatory body says that customer numbers dropped by more than 20 million over the July period, falling from 965.52 million to 944.81 million.
The decline mainly affected Reliance Communications (Mumbai, India), the country’s second-biggest operator, which disconnected some 20.48 million ‘inactive’ customers in July.
Nokia (Helsinki, Finland) will start selling its new smartphone, potentially its last chance to break into the most profitable part of mobile phone market and secure its future, in November, sources at European telecoms operators said on Friday.
The Lumia 920, which uses Microsoft's (Seattle, USA) Windows software, is Nokia's bid to catch up with Apple's (Cupertino, USA) iPhone and a string of popular phones using Google's (Mountain View, USA) Android software, like Samsung's (Seoul, South Korea) Galaxy models.
Brazilian telecoms operator GVT (Curitiba, Brazil) has reported impressive gains in revenues while trimming its forecast for overall sales growth this year.
The company saw net income rise by 31.4% to 2.05 billion Brazilian reais ($1.01 billion), compared with the first half of 2011, buoyed by the take-up of fast broadband connections and greater usage of voice services.
Were it not for a new tax rate, the company says its revenues would have grown by 42% year on year.
Vodafone (Newbury, UK) and Zain (Kuwait City, Kuwait) have signed an agreement that will allow each operator to use the other’s networks and services in the Middle East.
Vodafone already has similar arrangements in place under its ‘Partner Market’ program. The deal with Zain means this program now runs in 50 countries where Vodafone is active.
The UK operator says it will work with Zain companies in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Jordan and Iraq to provide customers with new communications services.
Just days after rivals blamed it for denting their profits, French telecoms upstart Free (Paris, France) claimed to have secured a 5.4% share of the country’s mobile-phone market, with 3.6 million customers, since launching its services in January this year.
The company has been accused of starting a price war by rivals including Vivendi-owned SFR (Paris, France) and Bouygues (Paris, France), both of which announced disappointing results last week.
Some phonemakers are quietly exploring alternatives to the Android operating system implicated in the Samsung-Apple ruling, industry watchers say, despite their public pronouncements they are sticking with the technology.
Last week, a U.S. court ruled Samsung's (Seoul, South Korea) Android devices were violating Apple (Cupertino, USA) patents - a major blow to the leading mobile software platform because it could lead to sales bans and high licensing fees.
Chinese group ZTE (Shenzhen, China), the world's fourth-largest mobile phone maker, unveiled its first smartphone model using Intel (Santa Clara, USA) processors, marking an important break into a top-tier handset maker by the U.S.-based group.
ZTE said on Thursday its Grand X IN model, which will go on sale in Europe next month, will mark the start of a wider portfolio of Intel-based products.
"This is the first among a number of handsets in the next 12 to 18 months," Chris Edwards, European business development and marketing chief at ZTE, said in an interview.
This update is led by a team of ICT experts with extensive Myanmar and regional experience. Besides industry review, the briefing provides forecasts on future trends and expected developments thus enabling you to:
French mobile-phone operator Bouygues Telecom (Paris, France) has blamed new entrant Free (Paris, France) for its dwindling profits and shrinking customer base over the first half of the year.
Net income at real-estate company Bouygues fell by 29%, to €278 million, compared with the first half of 2011, due to the setbacks at the group’s mobile-phone business.
Bouygues Telecom also expects full-year earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation to fall by 41% to around €750 million as a result of expenses related to cost cutting.
Millicom (Luxembourg) and the government of Senegal appear to have settled their differences over a mobile-phone license, bringing a four-year dispute to an end.
The two parties fell out in 2008 when Senegalese authorities reportedly asked Millicom to cough up $200 million for the renewal of its mobile-phone license.
Millicom rejected the demand on the grounds that it already owned that license and offered a much lower sum for the right to provide 3G services on top of its existing offers.