Broadband is fast spurring inclusive growth

Broadband is fast spurring inclusive growth globally. In India, while the Government and operators have helped achieve high growth to reach over 500m mobile subscribers – broadband connectivity remains an unfinished agenda. With less than 40million wire line connections, it is clear that internet access in India will largely be mobile.

To realize that, India needs to integrate to 3G a third generation mobile technology. While countries with much less subscribers are already reaping benefits of 3G, India remains a voice driven market. What then stops India from replicating the 2G success in 3G domain? With 3G rolled out successfully in hundreds of networks globally, India can ride the mobile broadband bandwagon by embracing global standards, in the same way it did for 2G.

The key lies in the availability of spectrum. Until desired spectrum is made available, development will be impeded.

Quicker and globally harmonized spectrum auctions will enable operators to rollout 3G network using existing infrastructure for nationwide coverage. This drive is access to much needed services such as health education, and governance to millions in rural areas.

It is equally important to choose the correct 3G technology for maximum benefit. The chosen technology should be mature and cost effective form deployment to ensure it success an adoption by masses. Of many options recommended by ITU for Broadband Wireless Access (BWA), the most mature ad cost effective is High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) and its evolution LTE. 3G /HSPA is well proven deployed in over 300 networks in 130 countries (supporting over 400 million subscribers and over 1800 devices). Analysts have projected that 80% of nearly two billion mobile broadband subscriptions will be served globally by HSPA and LTE networks by 2013.

Mobile broadband services and applications empower economies and applications empower economies and citizens, cerate jobs, and improve productivity leading to an overall positive impact for the society. A World Bank report reveals a nearly 1.3% increase in GDP growth for every 10% growth in broadband penetration. This was highlighted by Gramjyoti – an Ericsson led joint project with partners in Tamil Nadu which demonstrated that access to hi-speed internet catalyses socio-economic development and improves lives in rural India.

Currently in India, only two Govt entities – BSNL (in partnership with Ercisson) and MTNL are driving 3G. Other operators have shown interest in rolling out 3G. Quick, globally harmonized auctions will ensure economies of scale and launch of affordable 3G services enhancing deeper penetration like 2G services and bridging the urban rural divide. Increasingly, affordable 3G-enabled phones are being sold and it is believed that nearly 15 million of India’s mobile subscribers already possess 3G enabled handsets. Government targets of 20 million broadband subscribers by 2010 can only happen with 3G / HSPA enabled wireless broadband.

Globally, mobile broadband users in 2008 grew 80% over 2007 numbers. A broadband enabled economy will alter industry dynamics and traditional business models leading to closer cooperation between various players and consumers. Broadband with anytime, anywhere connectivity on any device has the potential of enabling a true well connected society, both in emerging as well as mature markets.

So, here’s hoping that this time next year, we have multiple 3G networks in India that would energize the market and trigger inclusive growth.

If you think that you had enough on your cell phone then get ready for whole new vistas of new features as 3G mobile technology makes its advent.

The most talked about technology in the field of telephony is 3G. It’s tool that enables a mobile user to experience seamless data transfer of up to 8 Mbps, which is revolution in itself. Till now internet access and down loading date particularly in mobile technology was an activity which was irritatingly slow and time consuming. With a 3G and video calls supporting handset and an active 3G service one can have the ability to not only download data as a great speed but he can also make video calls to a compatible device without the hassle if using a we beam an sitting behind a laptop or a computer screen. The high bandwidth speeds on 3G network would mean that content providers would be able to stream rich media mobile content with 2D and 3D animations to mobile phones.

By facilitating multilateral video calls, 3G offers academia and enterprises a unique opportunity to deliver knowledge and information to an entirely new audience beyond the physical constraints of a campus or classroom. The mobile learning or the m-learning space is already filled with a huge diversity of content ranging from Skill Pills and mock CAT / GRE tests to quiz and gaming tools. If the industry experts are to be believed, then with 3G expected to take off in the country soon, m-learning is set to become a game changing platform for delivery of learning content. With 3G about to bedazzle the country with its over whelming capabilities of videos calls, live television and high sped connectivity, a few technological concerns are delaying its induction into the country’s telecom space. The data transfers and voice calls are encoded in a 3G network. The inability of the Indian security agencies to decide these data transfers and voice calls on real time basis has raised concerns about 3G being a threat to the security of individuals as well as that of the whole country.

Unfazed by these security concerns, MTNL was he first telecom service provider to launch the 3G services in India, which was welcomed by every mobile enthusiast in the country. India definitely is a high potential market for the new 3G technology.