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WiMax - not the rural choice 31 Mar, 2008

“WiMax is still a niche technology and limited to enterprise and high-end residential users in urban India.”

Research firm Gartner Group says WiMax will remain a niche technology, and predicts that India will only have 6.9 million mobile and fixed WiMax connections by the end of 2011.

So far, India has only 3.4 million broadband subscribers (Jan 2008) – less than half of the 9 million target, says Gartner’s principal research analyst Naresh Singh.

“The rollout of mobile WiMax in India is not clear, but service providers here appear to be taking 3G more seriously than WiMax at the moment.”

Read more at eetimes.com

The eye of the tiger 30 Mar, 2008

In 2007, Indian companies acquired more than $18bn worth of western companies. And in the past four years, the Indian economy has grown by 9% every year.

A prime example of the Indian acquisition trend is the recent takeover of Jaguar and Land Rover by Tata. The world economy has, as Aditya Chakrabortty just wrote for the Guardian, tilted. In the favour of Asia.

But the big impacts of the new Asian economies aren’t mainly the acquisitions. It’s the prices of oil and commodities like steel that have burst through the ceilings thanks to a highly increased demand from the likes of India and China.

It’s quite logical. As The Guardian puts it;

India and China have such big populations that, as they get tied into the global economy, they can’t help but have huge impacts on the rest of the world.

Read the full article at guardian.co.uk »

The data explosion 27 Mar, 2008

1,800 exabytes. 1,800 billion gigabytes. That’s how much electronic data that will be in existence in 2011, according to a white paper from IDC.

The figure is based on a compound annual growth rate of almost 60% from 2006. And already now, in March of 2008, the number of bits stored exceed the estimated number of stars in the universe.

Clearly, the impact of the digital universe is bigger than we thought. And it goes without saying that we need to bridge the digital divide — to ensure that everyone has access to humanity’s collected information and collective intelligence.

As far as mobile communication goes, VNL’s WorldGSM™ system is a viable way forward to bridge the gap and connect the previously unconnected.

Learn more and download the whitepaper at emc.com »

New invention: photovoltaic paint

A team of UK researchers are developing a new type of paint with dye-sensitised solar cells that can be painted directly onto steel sheets.

Conventional photovoltaic panels use silicon to absorb sunlight. The solar paint uses dye molecules attached to the titanium oxide pigments commonly used in paint.

Silicon is quite expensive and short in supply. Dye molecules absorb solar energy less efficiently than silicon, but the low cost combined with the new application opportunities offsets the lower efficiency.

The solar paint is still in development, and the research team hopes to have the first commercial release ready in 2011.

Learn more at newscientist.com »

The world in numbers 26 Mar, 2008

6.6 billion people. 18 million more every year. 6.4 billion tonnes of CO2 emissions, yearly. And over 1 billion internet users.

These are just some of the figures presented in the “World Clock” — an overview the human impact on our planet.

Continuing the theme of our previous post “Shocking images of unsustainability“, the World Clock paints an equally fascinating and terrifying picture of what is going here on our pale blue dot by presenting key figures for everything from population growth to total number of bicycles produced.

All things considered, it’s no surprise that sustainability has climbed high up on many agendas.

Check out the numbers »

(Thanks to Ben at Cartridgeworld for the tip)

Increasing rural teledensity 25 Mar, 2008

“Mobile communication is the road ahead for India,” said N Parameswaran at the 16th Convergence India 2008 Exhibition and Conference.

Parameswaran is TRAI’s principal advisor, and chaired the session “Developing Mobile
Communications in Rural Areas - Role of Stakeholders”.

He continued to discuss teledensity and the government’s ambitions;

“Alhough teledensity in the country has reached over 25 per cent, the spread isn’t even. Rural teledensity is still hovering around 8 per cent. The government’s target of 25 per cent per cent rural density will require collective efforts from both the government and the industry.”

Alcatel-Lucent’s A Sethuraman commented that “Lack of infrastructure is one of the major obstacles in connecting rural India.”

Discussing the challenges faced in connecting the huge potential but under-served markets of rural India, he added;

“We need to look at various options for meeting the information requirements of rural India. Affordable communication is where the answer lies.”

We couldn’t agree more. And fortunately, both suitable infrastructure and a required business model is now available.

VNL’s Microtelecom Business Model and WorldGSM™ technology is a viable way for operators to connect the next billion users.

India soon second largest

A recent report from TRAI (India’s Telecom Regulatory Authority) points out that India is set to soon become the world’s second largest mobile phone market.

Current figures (February end) show that the largest is undoubtedly China, with 540.5 million users. The US has 260.5 million wireless users, and India is third with 250.9 million.

Considering that Indian subscriber growth is around 8 million users per month, compared with US figures of 2 million, it won’t be long until India becomes the second largest.

Found via: Telecom Tiger