14 Nov 2008

Dual-mode WiMAX/GSM device hits Russian market

Earlier this year WiMAX watchers Maravedis were talking up Russia as one of the world's top WiMAX/BWA markets. Some weight was added to this arguments when we hosted a, WiMAX Forum-endorsed and well-attended Russia/CIS conference in Moscow last month. Further evidence of Russia being a key market for WiMAX equipment and device vendors was reported yesterday by telecoms.com, who noted that Taiwanese PDA and handset maker HTC has officially unveiled a dual-mode mobile WiMAX/GSM handset to add to its 'Touch' range of devices using Windows Mobile OS. The first to get their hands on the HTC Max 4G, which is being heralded by its makers as the world's first commercially available device of this type, will customers of Russia's Scartel.

Scartel, currently building out a mobile WiMAX network in Moscow and St. Petersburg and offering services under the 'Yota' brand name, will offer the HTC device to subscribers from November 26th.

According to the telecoms.com piece, for voice, Scartel HTC MAX 4G users "will be able to make and receive GSM calls with any Russian mobile phone network operator; when both callers are Yota subscribers, calls will be routed as VoIP on the Scartel's mobile WiMAX network."

We hope that Scartel and HTC will both be represented at our 7th annual Russia & CIS Com conference (formerly GSM>3G Russia) in Moscow next June when, once again, we will be gathering high level executives from telecoms businesses mainly in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. For companies looking for good business development opportunities in the CIS, this event offers a very convenient one-stop shop for meeting operators of every type and size - fixed, mobile, integrated, cable MSOs and more. An earlier opportunity, relating more specifically to meeting prospects from the CIS markets of the Caucasus region and Central Asia (i.e. Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan) is our Eurasia Com conference. The next of these will be 31st March and 1st April 2009 in Istanbul. Companies which have already confirmed their high-level participation include: MTS, MegaFon, Kyrgyztelecom, Bakcell, AzEurotel and Megacom.

13 Nov 2008

GSM>3G Middle East speaker: we're on target to double our subscriber base

One of the confirmed speakers for our annual GSM>3G Middle East conference (15-16 December, Dubai) has recently made a very positive prediction regarding his company's growth.

Iraq's Asiacell has indicated that it is on target to double its subscriber base within a 12 month period. CEO Dr Diar Ahmad, who will be joining the panel of speakers at our Dubai conference, said in a recent interview that the customer base has now passed the six million mark.

“By the end of the year we expect to have 6.3 million subscribers,” he told an ITP publication, adding “We have had 90% growth on customer numbers. It is a very aggressive growth - more than we planned for.”

10 Nov 2008

Kyrgyz incumbent carrier: CEO-level support for Eurasia Com conference

Our 5th annual Eurasia Com conference (31 March & 1 April 2009, Istanbul) received a huge boost this morning. While we have done well in terms of attracting speakers and delegates from the mobile operators of the South Caucasus and Central Asia regions, it has frankly been rather more difficult to engage with the mainly state-owned incumbent carriers from that part of the world. Doing this more effectively is an ambition I've held for a couple of years now. I am convinced that many of our customers (telecoms tech vendors looking to access emerging markets regions worldwide) also find their business development in the CIS to be above-averagely challenging. My vision for this event, therefore, has been to gather every kind of telecoms operator from the region under one roof for a two-day one-stop-shop for our sponsors. The CIS markets' incumbent wireline carriers have been the one missing piece from this jigsaw.

That changed today with the confirmation of Mr Marat Mambetaliev, General Director of KYRGYZTELECOM as a member of the panel of speakers. We will now work to leverage this confirmation to encourage the participation of Mr Mambetaliev's counterparts from other countries in the region.