CyberschuulNews Editions 491 - 495

 
 

 Cyberschuulnews 495

ITU Releases new Information Society Records

Highlights
Korea is world's most advanced ICT economy

Developing  Countries are catching up

 

New figures released during the week by ITU show that information and communication technology (ICT) uptake continues to grow worldwide, spurred by a steady fall in the price of telephone and broadband Internet services.

 

The new data, released in ITU's flagship annual report Measuring the Information Society 2012, rank the Republic of Korea as the world's most advanced ICT economy, followed by Sweden, Denmark, Iceland and Finland.

 

Of the ten top-ranked countries, eight are from Europe. The two remaining countries both come from the Asia-Pacific region, with the Republic of Korea in first place, and Japan ranked 8th. The top five countries have not changed their rank between 2010 and 2011. The only new entrant in the top ten is the UK, which moved up from 14th place last year to 9th place in 2012.

 

ITU's ICT Development Index (IDI) ranks 155 countries according to their level of ICT access, use and skills, and compares 2010 and 2011 scores. All countries in the IDI top 30 are high-income countries, underlining the strong link between income and ICT progress.

 

There are large differences between developed and developing countries, with IDI values on average twice as high in the developed world compared with developing countries. The report identifies the group of countries with the lowest IDI levels - so-called Least Connected Countries - and highlights the need for policy makers to pay keen attention to this group.

 

'ITU's Measuring the Information Society report is the most comprehensive statistical and analytical report on the shape of ICT markets worldwide. Our reputation as a wholly impartial and reliable source of ICT market statistics makes this report the annual industry benchmark for technology development,' said ITU Secretary-General Dr Hamadoun I. Toure.

 

This information is reproduced from ITU Press Release

 

Developing countries now account for lion's share of mobile growth

 

The Measuring the Information Society 2012 report also identifies countries which have made the most progress when it comes to ICT development. These dynamic ICT markets are mostly located in the developing world, evidence that many developing countries are catching up quickly in efforts to bridge the so-called 'digital divide'. Strong performers include Bahrain, Brazil, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda and Saudi Arabia.

 

In the mobile sector, developing countries now account for the lion’s share of market growth. Mobile-cellular subscriptions registered continuous double-digit growth in developing country markets, for a global total of six billion mobile subscriptions by end 2011. Both China and India each account for around one billion subscriptions.

 

Mobile broadband continues to be the ICT service displaying the sharpest growth rates. Over the past year, growth in mobile-broadband services continued at 40% globally and 78% in developing countries. There are now twice as many mobile-broadband subscriptions as fixed broadband subscriptions worldwide.

The price of ICT services dropped by 30% between 2008 and 2011

 

Globally, telecommunication and Internet services are becoming more affordable. According to the report's ICT Price Basket (IPB), which spans 161 economies and combines the average cost of fixed-telephone, mobile-cellular and fixed-broadband Internet services, the price of ICT services dropped by 30% globally between 2008 and 2011, with the biggest decrease in fixed-broadband Internet services, where average prices have come down by 75%.

 

While prices in developed economies have stabilized, those in developing countries continue to fall at double-digit rates.

That said, fixed-broadband services still remain too expensive in most developing countries: by end 2011, the price of a basic, monthly fixed-broadband package represented over 40% of monthly gross national income (GNI) per capita. This compares to 1.7% in developed economies. Affordability targets set in 2011 by the Broadband Commission for Digital Development, on which ITU serves as co-Vice Chair, set the targeted cost of an entry-level broadband subscription at less than 5% of GNI.

 

One promising development is the growth of mobile-broadband services. In developing countries, mobile-broadband services are more widely accessible and, in the case of low-volume packages, less costly than fixed-broadband Internet services. Mobile broadband is expected to boost Internet use, which stood at 32% globally and 24% in developing countries at end 2011.

 

'The past year has seen continued and almost universal growth in ICT uptake. The surge in numbers of mobile-broadband subscriptions in developing countries has brought the Internet to a multitude of new users. But despite the downward trend, prices remain relatively high in many low-income countries. For mobile broadband to replicate the mobile-cellular miracle and bring more people from developing countries online, 3G network coverage has to be extended and prices have to go down even further,' said Brahima Sanou, Director of ITU's Telecommunication Development Bureau, which produces the annual report.

ICTs have growing impact on economy, developing countries are key growth markets

 

The report also shows that the ICT sector has become a major contributor to economic growth. In 2010, global exports of ICT goods accounted for 12% of world merchandise trade, and as much as 20% in developing countries.

 

ITU data show that global revenues from telecommunication services reached USD 1.5 trillion in 2010, corresponding to 2.4 % of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP). In the same year, investment (measured by capital expenditure) in telecommunications amounted to more than USD 241 billion, or an estimated 2% of the world's total gross fixed capital formation.

 

The figures highlight the important role developing countries are playing in terms of telecommunication revenues and investments, particularly during the recent economic crisis. Between 2007 and 2010, both telecom revenues and investment continued to grow by 22% in developing countries, whereas revenues stagnated in developed countries. Developing countries are also increasingly attractive destinations for foreign direct investment (FDI) in telecommunications.

 

By beginning 2011, nine of the top 20 telecom markets globally in terms of revenues were developing country markets - including Brazil, China, India and Mexico – and developing countries accounted for 35% of world telecommunication revenue.

 

At the same time, ITU research and data suggest that developing countries need a relatively higher level of investment in advanced ICT services to fuel growth, mainly because ICT infrastructure levels are still limited.

 

This information is reproduced from ITU Press Release

 

 

Industry Review
Huawei, ZTE
at the Centre of Global Wave of Complaints

   The release of a US Congressional Intelligence Committee Report last Monday seems to be generating predictable ripples. In the report, the legislators specifically asked that the United States should view with suspicion the continued penetration of the U.S. telecommunications market by Chinese telecommunications companies. 

Top news agencies report that officials in key markets across the world, usually the Western countries, are coming up to express pent-up concerns about doing business with Huawei and ZTE. Notable is Canada whose national security system plan may now exclude Huawei and ZTE. The European Union which had always expressed worries that it could not push for lack of mandatory complaints from local vendors now seems to have a ground to commence serous review of Euro-China relations based entirely on its own initiative. 

The truth is that the vulnerable markets are the emerging markets of Africa who, for obvious reasons, can only play a wait-and-see game for now. African markets have another different problem in that many of the officials are compromised and care less about what happens to their countries. They are not known to care about security or development issues for so long as they make personal benefits from their official obligations. 

In 2002 when ZTE pulled through an unpopular rural telephony project loan in Nigeria for example, the plans appeared like the Chinese were planning to locate Chinese technicians and labourers in each of Nigeria's 274 local governments in the name of providing telephones for rural communities. Arguments that the plans did not respect local regulatory requirement of an operating license did not dissuade the officials who wanted the project to pass. And it passed only to fail when very senior officials of government quarreled and the project laid between them. Another $100million loan for telecommunication projects is being worked out at the moment. 

Mainly for reason of price, Chinese vendors are aggressive competitors everywhere they trade. But many are quick to suggest the Chinese government is subsidizing its firms for reward of advantages of using their gears in foreign markets for espionage motives. Evidences are difficult to quote but many vendors who cannot make direct allegations say the charges are real and obvious. 

Chinese newspapers are also out to say that the US congressional charges are spurious and groundless. They say American firms are afraid of competition and pushing their politicians to make unsubstantiated accusations.

 

SECURITY THREAT Charges:
 'USA' and HUAWEI draw the Line
 

The United States of America and China may be at the starting block of a faceoff which is potentially dangerous to bilateral relations. 

A U.S. House of Representatives Intelligence Committee has advised US telecom companies who might be planning business deals with Huawei to 'find another vendor 'if you care about your intellectual property; if you care about your consumers’ privacy and if you care about the national security of the United States of America'. That advice was issued last week ahead of a congressional report which was eventually made public yesterday,  (Monday). 

  The Committee has been on investigation of a leak which suggested charges of espionage against some Chinese firms and it found, according to words that were going round last weekend, that there was merit in the allegation. 

Although top officials of both Huawei and Chinese Government have denied all charges, the Americans are not impressed and they have told all network providers and system developers who care to listen to seek other vendors for their projects lest they fiddle with the security interest of America. 

Bill Plummer, Huawei's Vice President for External Affairs in USA said in an immediate blog posting after the Congressmen's Press briefing on Monday said 'while Huawei interacted with the Committee in good faith over the last 10 months, it is now clear — based on the Committee report issued on Oct. 8 — that the Committee did not in turn conduct a fair, impartial or objective investigation'.

A few industry players with whom follow-up enquiries were made suggested that where risks of investment is involved, America does not raise as much serious issues as where security and national interest is at stake.  Some even said coming at this time, a month to Presidential polls and from a Committee head by Mike Rogers, a Republican Rep, political calculations cannot be totally exonerated.

Huawei and ZTE are big Chinese companies which rate highly in global reckoning but do little business in the United States.  Less than 4 % of Huawei revenue comes from US while ZTE does even less. Ordinarily if it were telecommunication investments that the issues involve it would not raise the concern that is being shown. 

Huawei and ZTE have made significant inroad into emerging markets in Asia and Africa. Not in a few are there worries about the tendency to infiltrate local markets with Chinese citizens whose functions truly raise questions.

 

 

 CyberschuulNews 494

 

MainOne-IDC-G seal an Alliance Deal on data centre operations     

UK based International Data Centre Group and Nigerias MainOne Cable Co announced during the week that they have gone into alliance to strengthen IDC-G data Centre operations in West Africa.  

MainOne delivers wholesale communication services to Telecom Operators, Internet Service Providers, Governments and Large Enterprises in the region while IDC-G is a data centre service provider representing an alliance of high quality, carrier neutral data centres across 5 continents, with a focus on emerging and high-growth markets.    

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October 6, 2012 

Lenovo, A Chinese PC Maker sets up Factory in US 

Strange story isn't it? Lenovo which is closing on to being the world's largest PC maker said last Monday that it would open its first computer manufacturing plant in Whitsett, N.C., near Greensboro, United states. It will make laptops, PC's and Tablets.

The trend ever since electronics made world impact had been that US companies opt to manufacture in Asia.  But CEO, YANG Yuanqing, said it anticipates that the move will create 115 new manufacturing jobs in North Carolina, where the workers will build Think-branded notebook and desktop PCs, tablets, engineering workstations and servers for sale to domestic businesses, government and education customers, as well as consumers.  

Two weeks ago at the United Nations Assembly in Ney York, Lenovo declared intension to support UN Education First initiative whose mission to improve learning outcomes around the world.

 

Lenovo is a 2003 Chinese company whose progenitor commenced pc manufacturing in 1980. In 2005, Lenovo acquired IBM's Personal Computing Division, making it a new international IT competitor and the third-largest personal computer company in the world. Today, it is world's second going on final lap of being first.

 

 

Advertorial

Press Statement from NCC

 

No Frequency Band Racketeering at NCC

 

 

The Nigerian Communications Commission has been inundated by calls from concerned citizens over a story in the Leadership Newspaper of Thursday, October 4, 2012 which alleged frequency racketeering, with an insinuation that the management of the Commission has sold a frequency slot belonging to the Nigerian Police to a private firm, Open Skys.

 

The story also insinuated that the current leadership of the Commission has issued frequencies to Smile Communications without due process. There is no truth in both allegations.

 

However, we wish, for the benefit of the Nigerian public and all the industry stakeholders, to state as follows:

 

That the story in its entirety lacks basic understanding of frequency allocation and its processes involved, resulting in unsubstantiated information capable of misleading the public and industry stakeholders.

 

The frequencies allocated to Open Skys and Smile Communications are in two frequency different bands, and followed a due process for similar frequencies at the Commission, and began since 2009.

 

That the Frequency spectrum allocated to the Police by the Commission is intact and has not in any way affected by the allocation.

 

That the Current Executive Vice Chairman of the Commission, Dr. Eugene Juwah, did not initiate the allocation of the aforesaid frequencies, having resumed in July 2010, while the process began since 2009. Even after resumption at the NCC, Dr. Juwah has strictly followed the due process of issuance of licenses and frequencies.

 

In the case of Open Skys, its allocation process began in 2008 following a Presidential directive to the Commission for allocation of a portion in the 450 MHz to NIGCOMSAT. A request which the Commissions Board acceded to on the condition that NIGCOMSAT, being a government agency, must seek for private sector partnership before qualifying for such allocation. Upon compliance and submission of the name of Open Skys, the company applied for the license and frequency in 2009. Note that the use of 450 MHz for commercial telecommunications was approved by the National Frequency Management Council (NFMC) on Nov 5, 2004. After this approval, occupants in this band like the Police, Shell PDC, Agip, Chevron, and some others, were relocated to specific portions of the band from where they had indiscriminately occupied. The Nigerian Police was specifically on 18th of October 2005, approved to be moved to 469.375 469.975 MHz / 459.375 459.975 MHz of this spectrum. Open Skys, in which NIGCOMSAT has interest, were to pay the police for the relocation cost estimated at N350 Million, which from our records, was complied with.

 

Open Skys was thereafter invoiced for the sum of N1.141billion, for 5 years to enable the re-farming of the frequency while it paid the sum of N892,455,010.60 as frequency fee destined for the Federation Account while the balance of N247,544,989.40 later adjusted to N350 Million would cover the additional cost of replacement of the old radios belonging to the Police since they will not be attuned to the new frequency spectrum, was paid.

 

Therefore, the allegation of racketeering with any frequency belonging to the Police, to and allocation to a private company, is false. Currently, the Nigerian Police, Shell, AGIP and others still have allocation on the different portions of the 450MHz Band.

 

All the decisions on the above were taken by the Board of the Commission and all the due processes were followed. It is the Commission that also decides which of the available allocation processes as prescribed by the relevant laws, are applied during any allocation of frequencies.

 

In the case of Smile Communications Ltd, the company was in 2009 awarded a Unified Access Service License (UASL) for ten years, till 30th June 2019, a Private Networks Link, PNL and a Spectrum in the 850 MHz Band for implementation of the licenses, having applied since 2008. Its applications were processed in line with sections 123 and 33 of the Act and in compliance with our licensing procedures.

 

Smile Communications was licensed to provide broadband multimedia services on the 850 MHz Band nationwide and was assigned 15 MHz spectrum based on Time Division Duplexing (TDD) in the 850 MHz band to provide wireless access services in 2009.

 

In March 2010, Smile Communications appealed that their 15 MHz Time Division Duplexing, TDD, assignment to 10 MHz Frequency Division Duplexing (FDD). While this application was undergoing consideration, the Commission, first and foremost, took a decision to allocate additional 5MHz frequency on the TDD as earlier requested by Smile Communications to ensure effective use of the 15 MHz which it already had as the current status of the 15MHz would constitute a waste. The consideration of its request, which implied a conversion of the spectrum from TDD to FDD for a lower value, is yet to be decided as this would require time and costs for re-farming all the frequencies, and also to accommodate many applications that are being made for its use due to the digital dividend opportunities.

 

For its UASL license, Smile Communications paid N320,250,000.00 on 26th June 2009, for the PNL license, it paid N46,830,000.00 on 26th February 2009, and for its Spectrum License with 10 years validity from July 2009, it paid N2,154,600,000 (Two Billion, One Hundred and Fifty Four Million, Six Hundred Thousand Naira which is for the Federation Account, and also paid N718,200,000 for the additional 5 MHz.

 

We have taken efforts to provide details of these transactions to show clearly that Dr. Juwah has not even resumed at the NCC when the process of the allocations began. We also make bold to say that all due processes were taken in the allocations contrary to the allegations contained in the report.

 

We advise newsmen to always seek clarifications from the Commission before going to press with sensitive information that are false but capable of misinforming the public and casting the Commission and its management in bad light.

 

The Commission restates that in all its regulatory activities, due processes are followed, just like in the cases reported by the newspaper.

 

 

 

Reuben Muoka

Head, Media & Public Relations.

Dated this 4th Day of October , 2012.

For further Information, Please Contact:

Tel: 0803 664 5551, 08051110337

rmuoka@ncc.gov.ng

 

 Cyberschuulnews 493

Tweet-count hits all high 10 million in US Presidential Debate

 

Twitter has indicated that more than 10million twits were recorded during last nights presidential debate start-up between President Barrack Obama and Gov Mitt Romney. Of course it also adds that it is the highest in US history. Sure many will ask, why not and So what.!

 

The issues that got people tweeting the most, it adds, range between medicare, obamacare and fact checking.

 

Is it tweets that matter? No. Who will win the election, is the issue.

 

 

Operators say yes to EU Funding plans on Broadband

Europes big telephone operators under the name of European Telecommunications Network Operators Association, ETNO, have expressed support for the Unions plans to support upfront investments in high-speed broadband.

 

In a statement signed by representatives of Belgacom, Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom, KPN, Swisscom, Telecom Italia, Telefonica, and Turk Telekom, the Association said early this week that 'At ETNO, we actively support and will strongly defend the EUs proposed budget package, the structural funds for ICT and the Connecting Europe facility for telecoms and we will continue to promote investments in the regulatory policy framework to foster private investments in high-speed broadband,'

 

Under the proposed plan EU is to provide funding of about 50 billion Euroes from the EU Connecting Europe Facility for energy, transport and communications projects, where there is a need for substantial upfront spending.

 

�.and on Cloud computing too

 

In another development the European Commission, EC, has initiated a pan-Europe cloud computing initiative which it says will boost European business and government productivity and provide more jobs (2.5million by 2020).

 

This is in addition to all other effort which individual members are making and

 

The Commission says its own initiative will enhance interoperability, data portability and reversibility by making technical standard clearer and implementing an EU-wide certification scheme for trustworthy cloud providers.

 

The initiative is called Unleashing the potential of cloud computing in Europe

 

 

Data Centre Expert emphasizes on Energy Efficiency

 

According to a technology expert - Mr. Matt Flowerday, CEO CAPITOLINE, Data centres (DC) would shape the way IT business is conducted in the country because they are the engine rooms that run todays Global Digital Economy. However, the energy utilization in most DC is grossly inefficient, leading to astronomical rise in temperature and eventually grounding the Data Centre.

 

In an Audit of over 50 data centres within the past 2 years, Capitoline finds that running Data centre with a wider temperature/humidity ranges takes less air conditioning energy and helps to minimize energy consumption. Besides,  among all sources of Data Centre failures, temperature tops with 55%. Moreover, 84 major data centre failures that occurred within the space of 36 months worldwide had their root cause traced to energy/power, design, specifications, processes and operating procedures. Virtualization is widely known to reduce servers in the Data Centre which should have ultimately serve to reduce the vast amount of energy that DC consumes, but research shows otherwise. Experts say CRAC unit sizing and placement, thermal gain, heat generated by servers, racks organization are priority considerations for energy efficiency in Data Centres.

 

In a sensitization training organized in August 2012 by KITS technologies limited and delivered by Capitoline LLP of United Kingdom in Lagos to address these challenges faced by DC stakeholders, Mr Flowerday explained that DC would achieve efficient energy utilization with adherence to international tier best practice/standards in both the design and operational management. 

 

The Director, Business and Strategy, KITS Technologies limited, Mr. Taofeek Okoya also disclosed that a good understanding of the design concept, strict compliance to Tier standards and  green Agenda metrics could seriously save most Data centres in Nigeria of these avoidable failures. He said according to reports, major data centres experience a critical collapse and loss of availability, somewhere in the world, in every two weeks. In nearly every case, these failures  are preventable with improved design and operational procedures. The  training of Data centre operatives locally in Nigeria is aimed at reducing the likelihood of these mishaps in any of the Data Centres in Nigeria.

 

 

Cyberschuulnews 292 

PUBLIC NOTICE 

PRE-ENFORCEMENT NOTICE AND WARNING ON ILLEGAL AND FRAUDULENT REGISTRATION AND SALE OF FULLY ACTIVATED NEW SIM CARDS 

The attention of the Nigerian Communications Commission has been drawn to the continuous, illegal and unauthorized registration and sale of fully activated New SIM Cards to the members of the general public.

 

It has come to the notice of the Commission that Service Providers still activate SIM Card with any information presented or submitted by their Registration Agents and or Registration Centers without strictly validating if the sent information meets the required specification set by the Registration of Telephone Subscribers Regulation 2011.

 

Note that the Commission had earlier on April 12, 2012 warned against fraudulent registration and sales of fully activated New SIM Cards by vendors/dealers and have since begun the process of enforcing the provisions of the law.

 

Network Service providers are therefore further warned that they have the duty to among others;

 

Closely monitor the activities of their Registration Agents and Centers and ensure that their SIM Cards are not fraudulently registered for sale.

Warn all their Registration Agents and Centers to desist from registering New SIM Cards presented in their sealed packs. New SIM Cards should only be registered either while inserted into mobile handsets by subscribers or fully detached from its pack.

Since Service Providers are responsible for the activation of New SIM cards they will be liable for breaches by their registration centres involved in fraudulent registration and sales of New SIM cards.

Henceforth, the Commission will hold Service Providers culpable for activating SIM cards with incomplete or false details. Our  enforcement team has begun the process of fishing out such agents for which the network operators will be held accountable.

The Commission by this notice, requests that all Service Providers direct their Registration Centers and Agents to stop registration of SIM cards that are in sealed packs. All Service Providers are by this notice and with immediate effect mandated to remove from circulation all fraudulently registered SIM cards within their distribution channels.

Notice is hereby given that Enforcement exercise on fraudulent registration and sale of fully activated SIM Cards is ongoing and the consequences of such illegal activity may include arrest, detention, investigation, sanction and prosecution in accordance with the Nigerian Communications Act, 2003 and the Registration of Telephone Subscribers Regulation 2011.

 

The Commission considers it important to warn the general public and Network Service Providers that there shall be no proxy registration of Subscribers. New SIM Cards must be personally registered with the Network Service Providers or their appointed agents. 

 Signed:

Tony Ojobo

Director, Public Affairs

 

 NEWS: Marissas Son arrives

 

Zachary Bogue, Marissa Mayers husband twitted information Monday morning that their son, yet to be named, arrived Sunday evening. Baby boy Bogue born last night. Mom and baby are doing great--we couldn't be more excited

 

Marissa took over as CEO at Yahoo in July and has been combining ante natal responsibilities at home with corporate reforms in the office.

 

INTRODUCING OUR FUTURE BUILT ON BROADBAND

by

International Telecommunications Union, ITU

 

 

The Internet is changing. From narrowband to broadband, from kilobits to Gigabits, from connected people to connected things our networked world is changing in speed, size, scale, and scope. Our ultra-connected future will build on converged Next-Generation Networks (NGN), while embracing broader concepts of embedded intelligence, automated Machine to Machine (M2M) traffic, and the Internet of Things.

 

In our future networked world, we shall enjoy high-speed connectivity on the move, roaming seamlessly between networks, wherever we go anywhere, anytime, via any device. Today, the stellar growth of mobile means that many people now access the Internet via a mobile device. 

 

Worldwide, mobile phone subscriptions exceeded 6 billion in early 2012, with three-quarters of those subscriptions in the developing world. As the price of handsets falls and their functionality increases, soon the vast majority of people on the planet will hold in their hand a device with higher processing power than the most powerful computers from the 1980s.

 

In 2011, the number of networked devices surpassed the global population. By 2020, the number of connected devices may potentially outnumber connected people by six to one, transforming our concept of the Internet, and society, forever.

 

Todays Internet economy is large and growing fast by every measure. In 2012, the Boston Consulting Group estimated the size of the Internet economy in the G20 countries at around US$ 2.3 trillion or 4.1% of GDP in 2010; by 2016, this could nearly double to US$ 4.2 trillion2. In 2011, McKinsey estimated that the Internet accounts for 3.4% of total GDP and one fifth of all growth in GDP for the G8 countries plus five major economies (Rep. of Korea, Sweden, Brazil, China, and India McKinsey Global Institute, 20113). Taking into account the spillover effects of broadband could boost these estimates further, as broadband connectivity is also argued to impact positively labor productivity (e.g. Booz & Company, 20094) and job creation (e.g. Ericsson, Arthur D. Little, 20125, Shapiro & Hassett, 20126).

 

The World Bank has estimated that a 10% increase in broadband penetration could yield a 1.21 and 1.38% increase in GDP growth on average for high income and low/middle-income countries respectively. Country case studies yield similar estimates for individual countries as diverse as Panama, the Philippines, and Turkey. Broadband is today a critical infrastructure in the growing global digital economy, and countries that fail to invest in broadband infrastructure risk being excluded from todays online economy, as well as the next stage of the digital revolution and future Internet. 

 

Internet Protocol (IP)-enabled broadband connections are not just about economic empowerment, however. Always-on connectivity can improve our lives in a myriad of ways by providing better access to health and education, enabling financial inclusion, facilitating m-payments, and creating transparency in government, as just a few examples. Broadband will ultimately also enable everyone to access data easily in the cloud, use video conferencing and Voice over IP, share updates over social networks, and outsource or crowd-source everything from housework to homework. This will be the cutting-edge case for those of us able to access high-speed broadband connections to the Internet. Large swathes of the industrialized world can already access high-speed Internet connectivity at over 5 Mbps; however, the picture is not as bright for Africa, much of southern Asia, and Latin America.

 

Adapted for reading without the reference graphics

as presented in ITU Annual Report 2012.

 

 Cyberschuulnews 491

iPod, iPad, iPhone, now iAPology from Apple

 

While the euphoria over a successful launch of Apples iPhone 5 is still reverberating across all markets where it is already being sold, Apples words that graphics and text are incredibly detailed in Maps fell flat. Mr. Tim Cook, its CEO, had to apologise for severe gaffs in the product. And he not only said sorry but suggested that customers should use alternative apps in the meantime.

 

In a statement to its customers shortly after complaints over the Map reached unbearable level, Tim Cook said at Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers. With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better.

 

It must have been humbling enough to make the tech-whiz say while were improving Maps, you can try alternatives by downloading map apps from the App Store like Bing, MapQuest and Waze, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on your home screen to their web app.

 

Mobile Number Portability takes off December

 ......says NCC

 

 NCCs boss Dr Eugene Juwah has again confirmed that the December 2012 schedule for Mobile Number portability (MNP) take off is real. A license went to a consortium of three companies Interconnect ClearingHouse, Saab Grintek, and Telecordia  earlier in the year to prepare the plans and manage MNP for five years period.

 

Dr Juwah also used the occasion of a Telephone Subscribers Summit in Lagos this week to present a catalogue of interventions which the Commission accomplished in the past but which were never routinely mentioned in industry comments, reports, and analyses.

 

These include increase in validity period of telephone call credit; per second billing, reduction in SMS tariff, removal of validity period on recharge cards, toll free access to NCCs contact centre for enquiry and complaints for the dissatisfied consumer, and free tolling on customer care & help lines of service providers.

 

He also talked about four major directions which the Commission issued to Phone Operators on unsolicited telemarketing; payment of compensation to consumers due to loss of services that was occasioned by poor quality of service; the non existence of customer care centers in most of the state capitals and on lowering interconnect rates for voice/data services and guidelines for advertisement and promotions.

 

 

NCC seals 4 illegal SIM Registration Dealers

 

The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, intensified its war on illegal pre-registration of SIM cards by sealing the offices of 4 offending dealers in Abuja and arresting their executives for prosecution, last Thursday. 

 

Head of Enforcement Mr. Efosa Idehen said the current phase of the clampdown includes tracking the dealers and impounding the offending machines.

 

The companies sealed in Abuja include Correspondence Ltd, Zeph Associates, Glovic Communications, and Connect Ground Towers. They were identified as the source of some of the offending machines being used by some of the agents to pre-register SIM cards that are being sold in the streets.

 

 

RIM is very hopeful to bounce back with Bb10

 

RIM has just said in Toronto on Thursday that it has lowered its loss and hopes that the launch of Bb10 early next year (no one has ever hinted on the actual date) will return it to good reckoning.

 

Analysts say if Bb10 turns out a very good stuff for its class, it may continue to lead the smartphone market in emerging markets where most people of the world live anyway.

 

 

ITU 2012 Report makes policy recommendations to maximize the impact of broadband

 

 

The International Telecommunications Union, ITU, has released its 2012 State of Broadband Report which much of the content is devoted to the construction and use of broadband.

 

The report advises that strategies to increase broadband adoption and use must take into account the full range of government actions or policies and their impact on the cost to consumers of services, devices and relevant apps.

 

Listing 13 items for inclusion into broadband roadmap of its members, the Agency urges governments to:

 

         Explore fresh approaches to spectrum management

 

         Implement Dig Once Policies & Expedite Rights of Way and Construction Permits

 

         Use Universal Service Funds (USFs) and other financial mechanisms to develop broadband

 

         Consider Reviewing and Updating ICT Regulations

 

         Consider a Unified Licensing Regime

 

         Consider Converged Regulation

 

         Reduce taxes and import duties on telecommunication/ICT equipment and services

 

         Stimulate the creation of local content in local languages

 

         Enhance demand for broadband through E-Gov initiatives

 

         Monitor ICT developments, based on statistical indicators

 

         Incorporate sustainability principles into ICT regulations and policies

 

         Promote the skills and talents necessary for broadband

 

 

 

Estonia, Worlds best in Internet Freedom beats USA to 2nd Place

 

 

A September 24, 2012 report on a global assessment of internet and digital media published by Freedom House says that although almost a third of the world now has access to the internet and more than that number may be using mobile phones, the consequences of such access in empowering people to ask for accountability from their rulers has resulted in various forms of blockade of access to the internet.

 

The report indicates that restrictions on internet freedom in many countries have continued to grow, though the methods of control are slowly evolving and becoming less visible. Indeed, there has been intensified censorship, arrests, and violence against bloggers as the authorities sought to quell public calls for political and economic reform. Some also limit connectivity and infrastructure, blocking and filtering content that is critical of the regime, and arresting users who post information that is deemed undesirable.

 

The good story is that despite the growing threats, the studys finds that there is significant uptick in citizen activism related to internet freedom, which has produced several notable mobilization efforts and legislative victories. The study limits its coverage to 47 countries only.

 

The report measures each countrys level of internet and digital media freedom. Each country receives a numerical score from 0 (the most free) to 100 (the least free), which serves as the basis for an internet freedom status designation of Free (0-30 points), Partly Free (31-60 points), or Not Free (61-100 points). Ratings are determined through an examination of three broad categories: Obstacles to Access, Limits on Content, and Violation of User Rights.

 

Extract from the global scores for the 47 countries shows Estonia (population, 1.27milion) rates highest in the world with 10 points beating USAs 12 points to a second place. Germany and Australia follow with 15 and 18 points respectively while South Africa 26, Nigeria 33, and Egypt 59. In Estonia, freedom of expression is unhindered, there is widespread internet access, e-government services, e-commerce and other e-services.

 

Estonia 10 Brazil 27 Indonesia 42 Zimbabwe 54 Burma 75

USA 12 Ukraine 27 Libya 43 Sri Lanka 55 Ethiopia 75

Germany 15 Kenya 29 Malaysia 43 Kazakhstan 58 Uzbekistan 77

Australia 18 Georgia 30 Jordan 45 Egypt 59 Syria 83

Hungary 19 Nigeria 33 Tunisia 46 Thailand 61 China 85

Italy 23 SKorea 34 Turkey 46 Pakistan 63 Cuba 86

Philippines 23 Uganda 34 Venezuela 48 Belarus 69 Iran 90

UK 25 Kyrgyzstan 35 Azerbaijan 50 Bahrain 71    

Argentina 26 Mexico 37 Rwanda 51 SArabia 71    

SAfrica 26 India 39 Russia 52 Vietnam 73    

 

 

Freedom House, a private independent organization which supports the expansion of freedom throughout the world posits that freedom is possible only in democratic political systems in which governments are accountable to their own people.

 

 

 

The world is talking iPhone5

 

Half of world telecom news space is conveniently occupied by Google, Apple, Samsung, and Microsoft. Apple in particular seems to have held the world down with the soon-to-come but now-arrived iPhone 5 which also enjoys tremendous controversy in media analysis. It is either one analyst is saying the noise had been too much for what has eventually come but, really, the stuff is good or another is saying nothing like it has ever happened, full stop. It is difficult for even the worst critics of iPhone5 not to recognize its magnificence.

 

 

Long wait for Bb10

 

Long way to travel is the best way to describe the almost 4 months yet for Blackberry 10, RIMs next-generation touch-screen smartphone to appear in the market. That is if what CEO Thorsten Heins said in July is anything to go by. Chances are that RIM will seek prominence outside of USA where in recent time, the shelves are running out of any of its products. Hopefully the Blackberry maker will pay serious attention to the African markets especially of South Africa and Nigeria where it is making very good impression and enjoying improving patronage. That much was confirmed by Heins when he was in Johannesburg last week. According to him

 

South Africa is a priority one market for us, and we will acknowledge that with the launch of Blackberry 10. There will be three waves in taking it to global markets, and South Africa and Nigeria are in the top range of Wave 1 launches. We will pay tribute to our customers here by delivering Blackberry 10 in South Africa when it is launched,

 

Heins also told his audience at the company's US developers conference last Tuesday that active testing is progressing on BB10.

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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