America Móvil announced that it will invest 340 million dollars in the development of new technology for its fixed and mobile operations, Claro and Codetel, in the Dominican Republic during 2011. According to the president of the company, Oscar Peña, the company will cease operating fixed telephones under the name Dominican Telecommunications Company (Codetel) as of April, and will unify its brands for fixed and cellular business under the mobile operator Claro.
During the next few days a resolution from the Secretary of Communications and the Secretary of Business will be published in the Official Argentine Bulletin establishing the time span for the implementation of number portability for mobile telephones in the country. According to local media, the chronogram details that the system will begin operating in the month of December of this year. In addition, cellular operators will provide the financing for the implementation of the system, estimated at 40 million dollars.
The Executive Power signed the decree of resolution for the awarding of the spectrum concessions to Telefónica and America Móvil and officialized the opening of the cellular telephone market in Costa Rica. Now the contract must be audited by the Republic’s General Comptroller’s Office. For the moment, with the decree signed, the participating operators can commence proceedings to request connections of microwave frequency to plan installation of the radio bases and unfolding of the network.
The National Anonymous Company of Telephones of Venezuela (Cantv) achieved 242,993 new subscriptions to fixed broadband Internet services in 2010 and reached a total of 1,35 million accesses, which represents a growth of 22% with the respect to the base of the year before. In his presentation before the National Assembly to the memory and account of the Executive Power, the president Hugo Chávez affirmed that with respect to 2009, this figure represented a growth of 1.100%. Chávez reiterated the role of Cantv, since its nationalization, to encourage telecommunications services .In accordance with data from the National Commission of Telecommunications (Conatel), during the third trimester of 2010 the number of accesses to fixed Internet services in Venezuela totaled 2,49 million throughout the country.
Tigo (Milicom) in Guatemala presented a service for the transfer of money through authorized agents operating with transfer confirmation by means of SMS. The Tigo Money service is not a mobile money service, but rather a financial service like Western Union. Tigo Money allows for the sending or receiving of transfers of money in cash from person to person from one dollar up to 315 dollars at a cost of 6% of the total amount. Anyone wishing to send money has to complete a request at an authorized agent, present identification and deliver the money. The beneficiary then has to proceed to their authorized agent to claim the funds and present his identification together with the text message confirming the operation.
Last week saw the opening of the first point of Wi-Fi access to free Internet in a public place in the City of Buenos Aires. The Governor of the city announced that this is the first of nine locations that will be installed during this year. The first access point is to be found in the Bernardo Houssay Square in the suburb of Recoleta, a busy area where students congregate from the faculties of Medicine and Economic Science of the University of Buenos Aires. The plan for the rollout of free Wi-Fi foresees the opening of 26 locations by the year 2012.
TM is the first mobile operator to have entered a request for authorization with the National Agency of Communications (Anatel) to supply a virtual operator (MVNO). The associate of TIM is Sermatel, a voice on IP company (VoIP), which offers national and international call services. The mobile operator, however, has not yet confirmed this information, which comes from the regulator’s own sources.
The Minister of Science, Technology and Intermediate Industries (MCTII) of Venezuela, Ricardo Menéndez, has assured that the devaluation of the bolivar will not affect the prices of mobile telephones. “The exchange standardization will not have a negative effect. That is to say, the exchange rate of 4,30 bolivars will in no way affect the accessibility of telephone equipment”, said the minister at a press conference, accompanied by representatives of Digitel, Movistar and Movilnet.
With 28,98 million new mobile line activations during all of 2010, Brazil has reached a total base of 202,9 million cellular users and a penetration of 104.68%. A report from the National Agency of Telecommunications (Anatel) confirms that the 28,98 million new activations in 2010 represent a growth of 16,66% on 2009. 3G accesses account for 10,16% of the total, 20.62 million lines, and experienced a growth of 138.08% in relation to 2009.
Telmex International announced in a release to the stock market that they had concluded the public offer of acquisition (OPA) for preference shares of the operator of Brasilian payTV, NET Services. The communication confirmed that they had acquired 84,77% of the preference shares, increasing their total share to 92.27%.
Claro Peru has launched its instant mobile messaging service “Claro Messenger” by which its clients can hold conversations through the messenger with other mobile users or from their PC. The service is initiated and maintained through a Synchronica platform, the company, which will introduce and run the service in 17 of America Móvil’s operations in the region.
The Directive Council of the National Agency of Telecommunications (Anatel) approved the granting of the concession license of Multimedia Communication Services (SCM) to Telebrás. With this authorization the state company can advance with the installation of fibre optic to support the rollout of the National Broadband Plan (PNBL).
The Government of Ecuador, through the Ministry of Telecommunications (MINTEL) has announced that they have signed a contract with the national company Telconet for 13,5 million dollars, to carry broadband Internet services to rural areas. The plan will serve 947 educational establishments and 26 social development centres in the country. The access service will be installed during the next six months and will be provided via satellite and land. Telconet is a national capital company and will also participate in the consortium administrating the system of numerical portability in the country.