In a regular series, Mobile World Live‘s Asia Editor Joseph Waring provides a regional roundup of news snippets:
India won’t privatise BSNL, MTNL — minister
India’s telecoms minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said recently there will be no attempt to privatise the loss-making BSNL and MTNL, which he noted have installed 25,000 mobile towers to improve their services.
The focus will be on improving the health of the two state-run operators and making them profitable again, the Economic Times said.
LG to boost R&D spend 6.7%
South Korea’s LG plans to boost its R&D spending 6.7 per cent this year to KRW6.3 trillion ($5.57 billion) to secure future growth.
LG Group said in a statement that technologies like electric car batteries, next-generation displays and the so-called Internet of Things were key areas for investment.
iPhone 6 makes its mark Down Under
Australians purchased an estimated 1.3 million iPhone 6 and 6 Plus units last year, with the iPhone 6 outselling the 6 Plus at a ratio of four to one, according to research firm Telsyte.
The iPhone gained market share in H2, but the overall trend is likely to change again as the Android user upgrade cycle is expected to start soon, said Telsyte senior analyst Alvin Lee.
The firm doesn’t think that strong demand for the iPhone 6 will impact sales of phablets or larger form-factor smartphones, which it predicts will account for a quarter of smartphones in use by 2019.
Telsyte, however, pointed out that Android devices faced increased competition in H2 from older model iPhones that are handed down to family and friends.
“The hand-me-down phenomenon is impacting the market, along with a flood of secondhand iPhones cutting into sales of mid-tier Android handsets,” Lee said.