LTE is proven and cost effective
In Japan, competing against the existing operators, Soft bank looked at data services as their key initiative. Data ARPU’s has overtaken the voice ARPU’s by 2009 for Soft bank and it is growing at 52.5 percent growth.
A Sethuraman, Executive Director, Huawei India
Last year, we observed four major trends. The first of these trends is the mobile broadband. Globally we have seen voice customers going from 700 million to about 5 billion the last decade and all predictions are towards data broadband growing from 500 million to about 5.5 billion in the next decade. When you look at India we have seen tremendous growth in voice subscribers from few millions to 600 millions by the end of last decade and we have every reason to believe that going forward less than 10 million broadband subscribers are going to be 500-600 millions if not more. So clearly mobile broadband is a very clear trend that we all witness see.
Secondly, the trend at home. The shift of value chain communication pipe transforming to content is very clearly visible.
The third trend that we have seen is that how communication of things is going to happen. It is expected that by 2020, 50 billion devices would be connected and a lot of broadband communication would also happen between these devices.
And last off course the shift of communication technology to ICT enabled cloud computing.
These four trends are redefining the telecommunication industry and pivotal to all this is the growth in mobile data.
It is already a reality in Japan. Soft bank which has acquired Vodafone was a gamble at that time but has really paid off. Competing against the existing operators, Soft bank looked at data services as their key initiative. Data ARPU’s has overtaken the voice ARPU’s by 2009 for Soft bank and it is growing at 52.5 percent growth and it is also reversing the overall APRU’s for Soft bank and this reversal is kicking in. All these studies are being talked of in G 20 countries that data revenue will overtake the voice revenue as quickly as three to five years.
The impact of mobile data and the experience of people, the experience inherited from fixed broad band and mobile internet is pushing towards the mobile broadband. And we have every reason to believe that LTE is the viable technology which is going to provide cost effective mobile broadband and the eco-system support and backward compatibility.
From the point of view of information architect, I would say the existing 3G platform should be reused to offer LTE services. The benefits are number one is these are proven and number two it drastically brings down the cost for the providers. This will make business case viable for an operator.