Friday, August 8, 2014

Worldwide Telecommunication Developments


Hong Kong mobile operator SmarTone is re-entering the fixed market with ST Fibre Broadband—a range of broadband plans that offer different upload/download speeds. HomeFibre 200/500/1000 are available at respective monthly costs of HKD 220.00 (US $28.39), HKD 260.00 (US $33.65) and HKD 330.00 (US $42.58) and upload and download speeds of 200 Mbps, 500 Mbps and 1,000 Mbps. Users who subscribe to the operator’s Handset Bundled SuperFast Broadband & Voice Plan or the SIM only SuperFast Broadband & Voice Plan, both with at least 5 GB of data, will pay HKD 178.00 (US $ 22.97), HKD 198.00 (US $25.55) and HKD 218.00 (US $28.13), respectively, each month for the HomeFibre 200/500/1000 plans. Plan subscribers will also be able to access the internet through more than 11,000 Wi-Fi hotspots in shopping malls and restaurants across Hong Kong.


According to a recent survey of more than 2,000 U.K. residents, a reliable mobile signal is the most important factor that young home buyers (ages 18 to 35) consider when purchasing a real-estate property. To this demographic group, signal strength (45 percent) is more important than concerns about crime (26 percent), transportation (18 percent) and schools (17 percent). Of those survey-takers aged 55 and above, 26 percent said they considered mobile signal strength as the most important factor.

Latin America

Brazilian operator Telefónica Vivo is offering the Top-Up Vivo app to its prepaid and Control plan users. Through the app Android users can top up their accounts using MasterCard, Visa, Diners and Elo credit cards. The app will soon be available for iPhone and Windows Phone users.

Middle East/Africa

Saudi operator Mobily has introduced monthly roaming bundles that subscribers can customize to fit their needs. Users can select the number of call minutes and SMS and the data allowance that they want. Voice minutes and outgoing SMS can be selected in increments of 10 up to 100 units each month. Incoming SMS are not charged. Data can be selected in 50 MB increments of up to 500 MB.

North America

Through its Network Optimization policy, Verizon Wireless, the largest U.S. operator, has been limiting the data speeds on its heaviest 3G users for the last three years. The policy is expanding, and Verizon will start to throttle data speeds on its 4G unlimited plans on 1 October. The operator is capping the speeds on the top 5 percent of 4G data users who are connected to a cell site that is experiencing peak usage at a particular time. Throttling will not apply to government organizations and businesses that have major accounts with the operator.

 The above item appeared in a recent issue of The Tarifica Alert, a weekly resource that analyzes noteworthy developments in the telecoms industry from around the world. To access all of the latest articles and issues:

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