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News Digest: VAS, Spectrum, Mobile Funds Transfer, Music Piracy & More

VAS Market In India Growing At CAGR of 16.6 percent?

According to  business research and consulting firm Frost & Sullivan, the mobile VAS market in India is set to grow at a strong Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 16.6 percent from 2008 to 2015. With tumbling voice tariffs contributing to declining Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) rates, mobile operators are actively pushing for growth of the non-voice value-added services (VAS) market. The market is also expected to witness the emergence of stronger mobile VAS content providers/aggregators with the ability to grasp better revenue shares from the mobile operators.

Live Stream of Times Now, India TV and Zoom

Digital Video arm of the Times Group, TAN has announced the launch of the live stream for Times Now, India TV and Zoom on Live.Indiatimes.com. The live-stream is powered using Microsoft Silverlight 3.0. The webcast of the news feeds will have in-video  ads in formats  such as pre-rolls, banner ads, overlays and player skin branding. The live stream has integration with Twitter and Facebook, and status messages on either social network will help drive traffic to the live stream.

Winter Session Filled With Queries On Spectrum

Memebers of Parliament of India have shown a keen interest in all spectrum related issues this Winter Session of the House which started on November 19. Queries range from the CBI raid of DoT over allocation of 2G spectrum to the delay of the 3G spectrum auction.  (Read more at DNA)

Mobile Fund Transfer Outside Banking System Put On Hold

Regulatory problems and security concerns of the RBI and the Home Ministry has stopped the government for laying out a mobile based system of transfer of funds outside the banking system. At present mobile phone users can deposit up to Rs 5,000 with telecom operators that can be used for merchant transactions but no physical transfer outside the banking system. (Read more at The Economic Times)

Legal Digital Music Yet To Catch On In India

Relatively higher pricing and limited availability of legal digital music is why consumers prefer pirated copies. Legal content such as music on USB drives and memory sticks are not making any headway because they are expensive by almost about 40 percent as compared to the grey market. The local music industry loses Rs1,300 crore annually due to piracy, of which mobile chip piracy alone contributes Rs300 crore, said Savio D’Souza, secretary general of lobby group Indian Music Industry (IMI) as reported in liveMint.

No IMEI number No Calls From December 1st.

The Indian government had issued a notice, citing security reasons, to telecom operators asking them to block all calls to phones without a IMEI, the deadline for which was 30th November. From 1st December users with phones with no IMEI or fake IMEI will not be able to make or receive calls. There are around 25 million handsets without IMEI numbers in India. (Read more at The Economic Times)

Spice Mobile To Set Up Manufacturing Unit With Rs 100 Crore Investment

B K Modi Group’s handset manufacturing company Spice Mobile has announced that it will set up a manufacturing unit for mobile devices in India by next year with an initial investment of Rs 100 crore. The company is looking at a roll out of 2 million units a month and has plans to market handsets in Africa and Asia besides India. (Read more at The Economic Times)

BSNL And MTNL Continue Losing Market Share

For the previous two Financial Years BSNL and MTNL‘s mobile market share has fallen from 21.50 percent to 14.89 percent and 13.39 percent to 10.75 percent respectively. As of 30th September, 2009 BSNL has a market share of 13.86 percent and MTNL has 09.82 percent. The reason for the decline is the entry of new telecom operators and the intense tariff war. The government plans to sell a part of its equity shareholding in BSNL to get the  Navratna status.  It will provide an access to the capital market for raising fresh equity capital, if required and promote growth of BSNL. (Release)

ESD’s Partner UFO Movies Signs Up Cinemax For IPL In Theater

UFO Moviez has tied-up with Cinemax for showing the IPL on the big screen. UFO Moviez is the partner of Entertainment and Sports Direct (ESD) which has a ten year theatrical rights for the IPL.  There will be a 50:50 revenue share with the theater owner and UFO Movies for theatres with computerized ticketing system and a fixed amount model for other theatres. The major part of the revennue collect of UFO will go to ESD.  (Read more at Indiantelevision.com)

692 Websites Hacked In September, 511 Dotin Websites

According to the Computer Emergency Research Team of the IT Ministry, 692 websites have been hacked in September. Times Of India has quoted a senior government official saying “A total of 511 websites in the domain of dotin have been affected — 74% of all those affected — while 20% of the websites are in the dotcom domain. In our own IT department, a total of 63 attacks have been reported. Curiously, 21 of these attacks have come from hackers based in China.”

BSNL Not To Buy Equipment From China

The Indian Government has asked BSNL no to buy equipment from Chinese companies for deployment in “sensitive” border areas.The sensitive areas include states having international borders with China, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Pakistan. (Read more at Wall Stree Journal)

Cable Operators Under-Declare Revenues By 90 Percent

STAR India has said that cable operators under-declare revenues by as much as 90 percent crippling broadcasters. Uday Shankar, CEO, STAR India further said that this is the reason why quality of cable is so low in India, because cable operators are not interested in investment and broadcasters are not getting returns and investments are decreasing. (Read more at Business Standard)

NDTV Ties-up With Bikes4Sale.in

NDTV Convergence has tied up with Bikes4Sale.in which will now power NDTV’s motorbike section at www.ndtvauto.com and can be accessed at http://ndtvauto.bikes4sale.in.  This will allow users to download wallpapers, have access to news and videos besides selling and buying bikes. NDTV has a similar tie-up with CarWale.com for its four wheeler section.

UTV Sign Television Rights Deals Worth Rs. 95 Crore

UTV Motion Pictures has signed a series of non-exclusive television rights syndication deals worth Rs. 950 million for their entire 2008 and 2009 productions. As part of the arrangement Colors will telecast the premiere run of the movies followed by NDTV Imagine in India. B4U will telecast the movies across international beams and Channel 4 will air these movies in the UK Market.

TRAI To Announce Spectrum Related Recommendations In December

TRAI has announced that it will submit recommendations on issues of spectrum management and review of license terms in December. The recommendations will also cover whether  there is a need to cap the number of service providers in a circle and also the 2G auction and if there is a justification for delinking spectrum from license. The telecom operators seemed to be divided on this issue. Airtel, Vodafone-Essar were for  delinking while Reliance, Tata opposed it. (Read more at The Economic Times)

Operators Divided On Spectrum Cap

In reply to a consultancy paper of TRAI, operators have shared different opinions on the cap on spectrum alloted to telecom operators.Datacom, Unitech, Bharti, Reliance, Idea, and Aircel have argued in favour of a cap of 25% of the total commercial spectrum assigned in a service area irrespective of technology mix or spectrum band deployed. MTNL wants 15 MHz and 10 MHz per operator for GSM and CDMA spectrum. Etisalat and Tata preach 12.4 MHz cap in GSM spectrum per operator. (Read more at The Time Of India)

238 FDI Proposals This Year

The Government of India has announced that this year it has received 238 FDI proposals up to November. A total of 190 has been approved and telecom was one of the sectors targeted by the FDI. (Read more at The Economic Times)

Nokia Launches E72 In India

Nokia has launched E72, its new addition to the E Series range mobile phones priced at Rs. 22,989. This new model has a 5MP camera supports 3G and WLAN and comes with a 8GB microSD card. Zodium Black and Topaz Brown are the two colours that will be available in India. (Read more at Telecom Tiger)

Doordarshan Spends 6 Crores between 2007-09

Prasar Bharati has quoted a sum of Rs 6,16,70,426 as legal payments made by Doordarshan and associated parties during the period2007-09. The Central Vigilance Commission is enquiring over the expense. (Read more at The Economic Times)

Nokia Music Becomes Ovi Player

Ovi Player is the new name of Nokia’s music application. It comes with new features and upgrades. The ‘recently added’ tab will now show recently added music grouped by albums with cover art. A new ‘filter column’ will help users navigate easily and a redesigned player controls has made it more compact. This is the first version that is fully Windows 7 compatible. (Read more at Ovi Blog)

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