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Showing posts from August, 2018

How Many 5G Fixed Wireless Accounts in Service by End of 2019?

It is not easy to estimate use cases for the early 5G mobile network deployments (2018 and 2019) On one hand, since handsets will not be available until mid-2019 or so, it seems logical that the first wave of deployments could be lead by fixed wireless deployments.
On the other hand, it does not seem likely that use cases, after five to six years, will be lead by anything other than smartphone internet access, as large numbers of consumers swap 5G for 4G for internet access.
Total 5G connections will grow rapidly to 1.5 billion by 2025, with initial growth driven by fixed wireless access to replace or complement current broadband connectivity, analysts at Juniper Research now predict. But Juniper analysts also say 90 percent of 5G connections in 2019 will be used to support smartphone internet access.
It is not easy to reconcile those different statements and predictions. One way to do so is to assume that until volume production of 5G smartphones happens, 5G deployments will, of nece…

Telekom Malaysia First Half 2018 Earnings Down 14%

Telekom Malaysia Berhad financial results for the first half of the year ended 30 June 2018 show a decline in voice, data and other telecom revenue. That is an issue most telcos globally wil have to deal with as well.  
Telekom Malaysia posted revenue of RM5.78 billion year-to-date, 2.7 percent lower from RM5.94 billion in the corresponding period last year. In part, one might argue, that results from market saturation.  
Group Reported Earnings Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) for the first half of 2018 was RM1.61 billion as compared to RM1.80 billion in the first half of 2017 mainly due to the lower revenue.
Stripping off non-operational items, such as unrealized forex loss on trade settlement, group normalized EBITDA was 13.9 percent lower, at RM1.60 billion.
Group EBIT for first half of 2018 was RM444.5 million as compared to RM560.9 million in the first half of 2017.
Stripping off some non-operational items, including foreign exchange loss on internation…

As Line Between Platform and Publisher Blurs, We Need More Freedom for All

It is not so easy these days to clearly and unmistakably delineate what a “platform” is and what “media” is. Facebook says it is a “technology” company, not a media company. And Facebook execs sometimes have said the difference is between telling stories and building tools.
Others might point out that business models sometimes play a role. “Media” companies sometimes have business models based on business-to-business sales (advertising or content or products) and sometimes on business-to-consumer subscriptions, or a mix of those models.
It is not so clear that one can delineate based on revenue model. Amazon is a commerce platform, but also makes revenue selling advertising, and that role seems to be growing. And one might argue that Facebook’s hosting of a platform for people to communicate is akin to the communications platform provided by AT&T or Verizon, where end users supply their own content.
In principle, a platform is supposed to be content- and content-creator-agnostic, a…

Asia is Next Big Netflix Challenge

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For over-the-top video subscriptions, Asia is the next big challenge for big global providers, as Asia has been the growth engine for mobile generally, and is the big opportunity for mobile internet access and new Internet of Things apps and services as well.
Netflix’s penetration of subscription OTT video users in Asia-Pacific will increase from 11.8 percent in 2017 to perhaps to 14.3 percent in 2020, says eMarketer.
Local content remains a big challenge in countries where English is not the main language.
Asia  is home to one of the most competitive OTT over the top video markets in the world, eMarketer notes, with subscriber growth rates in 2018 of possibly 35.2 percent.
In India, high prices and a lack of localized content on OTT platforms have deterred adoption. Both Netflix and Amazon Prime Video primarily provide content in English and Hindi.  In 2018, only 1.7 percent of internet users in India will watch Netflix.
In Japan, Netflix launched in September 2015 and amassed more Jap…

More Competition Coming in U.S. Internet Access Market

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To the extent that cable TV industry fortunes now rely on internet access revenues, and to the extent that new competition emerges from 5G fixed wireless, that growth engine is exposed.
“We see 5G fixed wireless broadband as the biggest existential threat to broadband providers (by far),” say equity analysts at Cowen. Assume, for example, that T-Mobile US actually throws significant effort at 5G fixed wireless, and gets anywhere near its goal of 10 million accounts by about 2024.
“That would be a large majority of the entire cable industry’s broadband adds over the next six years,” Cowen analysts say.
Verizon, for its part, is targeting 30 million or perhaps 35 million homes passed, in metro markets where it has lots of fiber (places where XO has big footprint, for example) and outside its legacy fixed network territory.
That suggests Verizon could wind up competing most with AT&T, Comcast and Charter. Making a further assumption that in its chosen markets it will be Comcast and Ch…

Consumer Behavior Changes as Cost Changes

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Data per bit has huge business model implications that will be more obvious in the 5G era. Consumption of video is the biggest new design issue for mobile networks, since video is the app that requires the most capacity.
And it should be obvious by now that when access costs fall--either to a fixed price for unlimited usage, a fixed price for “what you typically use” levels, or even close to zero, as in the use of public Wi-Fi, behavior changes.
That was true for AOL when it switched from usage-based dial-up access to “unlimited” access, and is true in the era of public Wi-Fi as well. Big usage allowances mean consumers are willing to use Netflix and other streaming services. But, up to this point, such offers were hard to support on mobile networks, simply because cost per bit on most mobile networks has been an order of magnitude higher than on cabled networks.
But the principle remains: people consume more data, and especially video content, when they do not have to worry about the c…

Cost Per Bit

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Data per bit has huge business model implications that will be more obvious in the 5G era. Consumption of video is the biggest new design issue for mobile networks, since video is the app that requires the most capacity.
And it should be obvious by now that when access costs fall--either to a fixed price for unlimited usage, a fixed price for “what you typically use” levels, or even close to zero, as in the use of public Wi-Fi, behavior changes.
That was true for AOL when it switched from usage-based dial-up access to “unlimited” access, and is true in the era of public Wi-Fi as well. Big usage allowances mean consumers are willing to use Netflix and other streaming services. But, up to this point, such offers were hard to support on mobile networks, simply because cost per bit on most mobile networks has been an order of magnitude higher than on cabled networks.
But the principle remains: people consume more data, and especially video content, when they do not have to worry about the c…
Image
Data per bit has huge business model implications that will be more obvious in the 5G era. Consumption of video is the biggest new design issue for mobile networks, since video is the app that requires the most capacity.
And it should be obvious by now that when access costs fall--either to a fixed price for unlimited usage, a fixed price for “what you typically use” levels, or even close to zero, as in the use of public Wi-Fi, behavior changes.
That was true for AOL when it switched from usage-based dial-up access to “unlimited” access, and is true in the era of public Wi-Fi as well. Big usage allowances mean consumers are willing to use Netflix and other streaming services. But, up to this point, such offers were hard to support on mobile networks, simply because cost per bit on most mobile networks has been an order of magnitude higher than on cabled networks.
But the principle remains: people consume more data, and especially video content, when they do not have to worry about the c…

Connecting the Unconnected in Rural U.S.

Some 700,000 U.S. rural homes and small businesses will gain access to high-speed internet access for the first time through the Federal Communications Commission’s Connect America Fund Phase II auction, auction results released today show, and more than half of those 713,176 locations will have service available with download speeds of at least 100 megabits per second.
Connecting 700,000 homes in a nation with perhaps 138.3 million housing units, that might not sound like much. But the 250,000 most-isolated rural locations account for about half the estimated cost of connecting seven million U.S. homes in rural, hard to reach areas.
Of course, the most-isolated areas likely always will be among the best candidates for satellite or other wireless access platforms. Perhaps three million rural locations already buy satellite internet access.
That “cost to reach” logically implies that the great bulk of new investment under this program will support extension of service to new locations …