Showing posts from July, 2015

SoftBank Remains Committed to Sprint Turn Around; Will Take Time

SoftBank President Nikesh Arora says the company still is committed to turning around Sprint Corp. While it might be the case that a person in that position must say such things, Arora also seems to acknowledge it will take some time.
“Telecom business is a long-term business...It takes a while to shift the direction in the industry,” said Arora.
SoftBank bought Sprint in 2013 for about $22 billion. Today Sprint is worth about $13.7 billion, in terms of equity value. In other words, Sprint’s equity value has to climb $8 billion just to reach the original purchase price.
Do do that, Sprint will have to start making money. In the first quarter of 2015, Sprint still was losing money.
At least so far, Sprint has remained committed to competing as a full-service, national provider. Indeed, it is hard to see how a long-term turnaround could succeed with any other strategy. A retreat to some sort of niche role, at this point, likely would ensure that Sprint never would recover its full origin…

Comcast, Australian NBN to Deploy DOCSIS 3.1 in 2016, 2017

It isn’t clear precisely when, and in what quantities, the DOCSIS 3.1 standard will be commercially deployed, but Australia and the United States likely will be early to do so.
Comcast has said it will deploy DOCSIS 3.1, designed to support 10 Gbps in the downlink, early in 2016.
NBN Co in Australia has said it will introduce “Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification 3.1 (DOCSIS)” by about 2017. . DOCSIS 3.1 supports download speeds of up to 10Gbps and up to 1Gbps upstream.
More than three million homes and businesses in Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide, Sydney and the Gold Coast are earmarked to receive the National Broadband Network over the Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC) network that presumably will be engineered to support DOCSIS 3.1, even if DOCSIS 3.0 initially is used by many consumers.
The issue is largely dictated by marketplace realities. Not many consumers will happily pay hundreds of dollars to buy a multi-gigabit service, when lower-cost megabit services that work well…

100 Million in Asia Now Buy FTTH Subscriptions

Asia is a place of large numbers. More people means more of almost everything, including fiber to home connections. About 100 million people in the Asia-Pacific region are now subscribed to Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) services, according to Ovum
That growth is a continuation of 2014 trends. Fiber to home subscribers in Asia Pacific rose 35 percent to 115.8 million at the end of 2014, according to other statistics published by IDATE.
The number of homes connected with fiber, meanwhile, increased 36.8 percent to 338 million by the end of 2014, up 36.8 percent from 2013.
Japan leads the region with 100 percent of homes passed, followed by South Korea and Singapore with 95 percent each.
Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia and China also are among the top eight.



Myanmar to Test "Rule of Three"

That mobile and fixed network communications industries structurally are oligopolies might irritate many, but has proven to be an enduring foundation of communications industry dynamics globally, since the great wave of privatizations and competition began in the 1980s. Some might argue that stable oligopolies are possible somewhere between two and four providers, with many arguing three strong contestants is the optimal sustainable outcome. That four or more providers exist in many markets is considered by many a “problem” in that regard, generally called the rule of three.
Most big markets eventually take a rather stable shape where a few firms at the top are difficult to dislodge.
Some call that the rule of three or four. Others think telecom markets could be stable, long term, with just three leading providers. The reasons are very simple.
In most cases, an industry structure becomes stable when three firms dominate a market, and when the market share pattern reaches a ratio of appro…

5G: Breath-Taking Stuff

You might think some particular element of the proposed fifth generation network is the “defining” characteristic.
Perhaps it is the ultra-low latency that makes 5G distinctive. For others, the access speeds will matter most.
Connectivity transparency or consistent experience might be seen as the “key” features. In other cases, it might be the new business models or applications that seem most unique.
For some, “network slicing,” the ability to optimize general purpose network features in different ways to support specific use cases and applications will seem key.
Also, the growing inability to clearly separate “access” from “transport;” “connectivity” from “apps” will be the uniquely-new character.
In most instances, the flexibility or customization of the new network will seem the most-striking new feature.
5G will bring multiple propositions to all customers and at the same time provides an enhanced and unique proposition tailored to each one of them. The definition of the customer i…

New Spanish Copyright Law Reduces Traffic, Revenue for Content Producers

Rule number one: you get less buying of any desired product when the price is raised.

A corollary to rule one: anything that restricts a consumer’s finding out about a desired product will lessen consumption.

So you will not be surprised to learn that a Spanish law limiting news aggregator use of content snippets has reduced content provider traffic and business prospects, according to a study conducted by NERA Economic Consulting on behalf of the Spanish Association of Publishers of Periodicals.

Article 32.2 of the Spanish Copyright Act mandated payment of a copyright fee by online news aggregators to publishers for linking their content within their aggregation services.

The study says the new ban on use of snippets by news aggregators resulted in less variety of content for consumers and an increase in news search time estimated, in the short term, to represent approximately 1,750 million euros per year.
Content viewership dropped 14 percent. As a result, content producers lost about …

One Clear Way Net Neutrality Rules are Driving Up ISP Costs

One practical concern some had about reclassifying Internet access as a common carrier service was that there would be an explosion of complaints, leading to higher overhead costs simply to deal with the administrative compliance.

That appears to be happening.

In just the first month that net neutrality regulations have been in effect, consumers have filed about 2,000 complaints to the Federal Communications Commission against Comcast, AT&T, and other Internet service providers, according to records obtained by National Journal.

Officials in the FCC's Enforcement Bureau can choose whether to investigate any of the complaints for further action or penalties.

Justified or not, Internet service providers must respond to both the FCC and the complaining consumer within 30 days.
Harold Feld, the senior vice president of Public Knowledge, a consumer-advocacy group, acknowledged that most of the complaints probably do not identify real violations of the FCC's net-neutrality rules.


Why Consumers Won't Pay Much for Any Single Show

There is a logical reason why most consumers likely consider the fair price for any single piece of content (a story, a song, a picture, a video, a TV show) normally purchased as part of a subscription service to be a fairly low number. Consumers “logically” compared the cost of a compact disc, with 10 to 12 songs, to the download of a single song. It wasn’t very hard to figure out a “fair price” of about $1 to $1.30 each. Much the same sort of logic is likely to play out as TV content services are unbundled. Consider a single channel, with a wholesale price to the distributor of less than $1 a month. Triple that number to cover network, marketing and other overhead costs, plus profit and taxes, to $3 a month. Consumers are going to conclude that any single show should not cost very much. Nobody will be able to rationally figure out how much attributed cost is the “right number.” And delivery costs in a fully unbundled market are likely to be much higher, actually. It won’t matter. Con…

Based on its Churn Rates, Netflix is Way Ahead of its Competition

Are churn rates for over the leading over the top video services high or low? The answer, of course, is always “in relation to what?” Netflix subscriber churn, for example, might be considered quite low for a consumer service. Over the last year, four percent  of U.S. broadband households cancelled their Netflix service, representing nearly nine percent of Netflix’s current subscriber base. At 0.075 percent monthly churn, that represents a churn rate lower than experienced by AT&T and Verizon Mobile, for example. Hulu Plus customers churn at higher rates. Over a year, Hulu Plus churn is in the 50 percent range, meaning that about four percent a month, which most observers would consider high churn. Other services fare even worse, with churn rates as high as 60 percent annually, or about five percent a month. Currently, 85 percent of U.S. broadband households subscribe to a linear video subscription  service, while 59 percent of U.S. broadband households have an over the top video su…

Ultra-Low Latency Not Needed by All, or Most Apps, But Mobile Networks Will be Designed to Support Them

One often hears it said that one-millisecond latency is a useful or necessary attribute of network performance for a relatively small number of applications. That is true. 
But the applications requiring such responsiveness are important because lives are at stake, as in the case of autonomous vehicles, or for the realism of an experience, as for augmented reality.
Networks, though, are designed and dimensioned for the most-stringent apps, even when many--or even most--other apps do not require that level of performance.
So future fifth generation networks will be designed to support the most-stringent apps, in terms of latency and bandwidth, despite being a case of "overkill" for most other apps.

source: GSMA Intelligence

92% of 2014 Mobile Devce Models Produced by Asian Suppliers

Why this matters: if you are a policymaker or regulator in any country where you believe mobile devices or mobile apps represent a growth industry, you will feel pressure to encourage the device or app segment of the mobile and Internet ecosystem, possibly even to the detriment of the Internet service provider or other segments of the ecosystem.

If, on the other hand, one believes a domestic device or app industry is unlikely to develop, it is rational to take steps to encourage the ISP segment of the ecosystem. 

The device and apps business tends to develop on a "winner take all" pattern.

If so,  the tasks in most countries will tend to center on supporting ISPs and access availability, there being little possibility of fostering a globally-significant device or apps industry. 

Consumer Segment a bright spot for BT Revenue

BT faces many issues in common with other European Community telecom service providers, with flat to declining revenue growth being the most salient issue.
BT also faces the possible divestiture of its wholesale Openreach business, representing about 28 percent of total revenue. BT obviously considers the ownership of that chunk of the business important, in part because it represents a stable revenue segment.
Virtually all other revenue drivers have fallen since the 2009/2010 financial year, with the exception of the consumer segment, where sales of video subscriptions are growing.
The consumer segment represents about 24 percent of total revenue.
Mobile net additions and high speed access also show growth.
In the most-recent quarter ending June 30, 2015, revenue was down about two percent.
Global Services dropped about six percent, while BT Business dropped about two percent.
The consumer segment grew three percent while wholesale shrank about one percent.
Openreach was essentially flat.

Why 15% Non-Internet User Base is Not a Long Term Problem

A stubborn 15 percent  of U.S. adults do not use the Internet, according to the Pew Research Center.

The size of this group has changed little over the past three years, despite recent government and social service programs to encourage internet adoption.

Two observations: perhaps we sometimes forget that people have the right to exercise lawful choice. If people do not want to use the Internet, as much as we might think they “should,” they have the right to refuse, for any reason.

At some point, in any business or endeavor, the last increment of progress is so costly it is rational to consider not bothering to achieve it, and allocating effort and resources to some other important problem where the input will achieve greater results.

The other observation is that we have seen such technology laggard behavior before. Such problems fix themselves, assuming the innovation is widely perceived to have value.

The point is that the 15 percent of people who do not use the Internet may not wish t…