In a regular series, Mobile World Live‘s Asia Editor Joseph Waring provides a regional roundup of news snippets:
Taiwan considers regulating apps
Taiwan’s National Communication Commission (NCC) said yesterday it is considering regulating certain types of mobile apps that may be classified as ‘Type II telecommunication enterprises’.
The move by the NCC was prompted by the rising popularity of juiker, a local instant messaging app developed after the country banned civil servants from doing business using foreign instant messaging platforms, such as Line and WhatsApp, the China Post said.
After a probe, the regulator announced that instant messaging apps fall under the category of Type II telecommunication enterprises, which requires companies to have an operating license from the NCC.
If the NCC moves ahead, analysts say it would not only slow juiker’s development, but would have a hugely negative impact on the entire apps ecosystem.
A backer of juiker, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, said it hopes to see the NCC exercise prudence in the matter and examine all OTT companies equally, the Post reported.
True, dtac sign network sharing deal
Thailand’s True Corp and dtac have reportedly signed a three-year networking sharing agreement, which will see the Telenor subsidiary initially lease space for its 3G base stations in more than 100 towers from True’s infrastructure unit.
Dtac is expected to expand the deal to 2,000 towers next year, according to the Bangkok Post. True Telecommunications Growth Infrastructure Fund owns an estimated 6,500 towers in Thailand.
CSL signs up 100K VoLTE users
Nearly 100,000 CSL customers are using its VoLTE services, which the Hong Kong operator launched two months ago.
Using high-speed data packet switching, call connection times are cut by 25-85 per cent. Based on test results, the connection between VoLTE users is just one second compared to four seconds for a call between a VoLTE user and a non-4G user, and seven seconds for 3G calls.
In addition to improved voice quality, video calls can have a 640 x 480 pixels resolution, and users can switch seamlessly between voice and video calls, the operator said.
CSL is now owned by HK Telecom and its LTE technology is supplied by ZTE.
True investing $122M in 4G
True Move plans to invest THB4 billion ($122 million) to roll out 7,000 4G base stations to expand its 4G network outside the country’s major cities.
The operator, Thailand’s third largest with 23 million connections and a 24 per cent market share, currently has 2,000 4G base stations (operating on the 2.1GHz band) and aims to cover 60 per cent of the country’s population with the new investment, which will start next February.
Alcatel-Lucent wins 4-year True deal
Alcatel-Lucent has signed a four-year frame agreement with Thailand’s True Corporation to supply an IP transport network.
True claims to be Thailand’s fastest-growing mobile operator, the country’s leading 3G provider and sole provider of 4G LTE services, as well as being the country’s largest Internet and cable service provider. The upgraded network will converge True’s mobile, cable and Internet backhaul over a common network. Financial details were not disclosed.