Friday, July 31, 2015

Caribbean Roundup: Ericsson-CANTO, Etecsa, Altice – Regional
Latin America “finally stabilizing” for Nokia in 2Q15 – Regional
Samsung confirms weak Q2 as smartphone sales sputter – Regional
IDC: LatAm connecting objects faster than global average – Regional
Argentina, Nicaragua make biggest strides in ITU spectrum goal – Regional

Caribbean Roundup: Ericsson-CANTO, Etecsa, Altice – Regional
Transformation of the cloud and network performance are the main focus of technology provider Ericsson’s participation at the annual meeting of the Caribbean Association of National Telecommunications Organizations (CANTO), currently taking place in Miami.
Ericsson, which is acting as a gold sponsor of the conference, will hold two presentations on network quality and performance during the event.
“We will find out together with our partners how we can grow our businesses together, improve network performance and explore possibilities of new sectors and industries,” said Clayton Cruz, vice president for Latin America at Ericsson.
Cuba’s state-owned telco Etecsa announced that it would reward international prepaid customers that topped up their accounts with at least 15 pesos convertibles (US$15).
The company will give these customers a 25-peso bonus, to be used before August 31.
“The 25-peso bonus is independent of the top up, the customer will receive the same amount whether they make a 15 or 50-peso recharge of their phone,” Oscar López, marketing manager for mobile services, told newspaper Granma.
Altice signed an agreement with EuroTechnoCom (ETC) to deploy a fiber optic network in the Dominican Republic which will reach the networks of providers Orange and Tricom.
ETC will provide the technology and infrastructure, including connectivity materials and transmission equipment.
Altice’s executive manager in DR Abdelhakim Boubazine told Coloquio Digital that this would “revolutionize the telecom market in the country, bringing the next technology generations in converged services 4-play.”

Latin America “finally stabilizing” for Nokia in 2Q15 – Regional
Latin America brought in 235mn euros (US$256mn) for Nokia Corporation in Q215, increasing 5% year-on-year and 17% quarter-on-quarter.
The results are a much-welcomed turn of events for the company’s operations in the region, which has proven problematic in the past.
“As you know from previous calls, this has been a challenging area for us. But we are starting to finally see some stabilization,” said CEO Rajeev Suri during an earning results conference call, adding that the regional team is delivering in a more consistent manner.
However, that is not to say that the work is done. Latin America is the least profitable region for Nokia, faring behind Middle East & Africa (294mn euros in revenue) and North America (354mn euros), and a far cry from top performers Asia-Pacific (766mn euros) and Europe (703mn euros).
“The challenges remain and we do not yet have the diversified customer base that we need for the long term,” added Suri. “In short, progress but work in Latin America is still underway as results are not yet satisfactory.”
Total revenue for the company reached 3.2bn euros, a 9% year-on-year increase, of which Nokia Networks accounted for 2.7bn euros (6% increase). Nokia Technologies grew 31% from last year, bringing in 193mn euros.
Nokia announced in April its intention to buy Alcatel-Lucent for 15.6bn euros, which was recently approved by the European Commission.
The merger will combine Nokia’s mobile-only equipment business with Alcatel’s strengths in the fixed-network business, diversifying the company’s portfolio and increasing its customer base.

Samsung confirms weak Q2 as smartphone sales sputter – Regional
Samsung has confirmed its preliminary Q2 results, which indicated decreased profits and revenues as sales of its smartphones sputter.
The South Korean giant released its consolidated 2Q15 financial results this Thursday.
Samsung’s Q2 net operating profit dropped 4% to 6.9tn won (US$5.93bn) compared to 7.19tn won in 2Q14, in line with the company’s early-July guidance and below analysts’ forecasts.
Revenues fell to 48.5tn won from 52.8tn won in April-June last year, which was also in line with the company’s Q2 guidance.
Last week, consultancy IDC released its Smartphone Tracker report, showing market leader Samsung reduced its market share of shipments in Q2 to 21.7%, from 24.8% in 2Q14, while Apple saw its share of the market rise to 14.1% from 11.7%.
Given the dismal results, Samsung also said it will “flexibly adjust the prices” of the S6 and S6 Edge models in the second half of this year, while also confirmed the release of “a new model with a larger screen.”

IDC: LatAm connecting objects faster than global average – Regional
Tech consultancy IDC estimates that the number of connected objects in Latin America will grow to 827mn in 2020 compared to 244mn in 2014, Latin America research director Diego Anesini told journalists at a press conference.
This equates to a CAGR of 22.5%, outstripping the 19.2% CAGR expected globally, which will lead to 30bn connected objects in 2020, compared to 10bn in 2014.
IDC also estimates that spending on Internet of Things (IoT) projects in Latin America will reach US$8.8bn this year, up 14.3% from US$7.7bn in 2014. Chile alone spent US$300mn on IoT projects in 2014.
IDC has previously estimated that global spending on IoT solutions will grow to US$1.7tn in 2020 from US$656bn in 2014, giving a 16.9% CAGR.
The consultancy believes that IoT modules (sensors) and connectivity costs account for 50% of global IoT investment today, with IT services, security, data center services, big data analytics and management platform investments driving the other 50%.
Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) recently estimated that large companies in Brazil and Mexico will spend 0.23% of their total IT budgets on IoT initiatives in 2015, which is much less than the percentage that companies in Asia-Pacific, Europe or North America will assign.
However, TCS found that so far Latin American firms have obtained better results with IoT projects than firms in those other regions, with firms in LatAm increasing their revenue by approximately 18%.
IDC’s research shows that at present 85% of the IoT market in Latin America is driven by projects in five sectors – Transport, Manufacturing, Government, Retail and Utilities – in the form of 10 use cases, such as smart grid, connected cars, fleet tracking and security.
Asked about the possibility of other Latin American countries emulating Brazil’s initiative to work on a national IoT plan, Anesini told BNamericas that the Brazilian case is driven more by the decentralized nature of government in that country, whereas Chile and Argentina, for example, already have much more concentrated government systems.
Also, there are specific circumstances in Brazil, such as relatively high taxes on activation of M2M modules’ SIM cards, which merit central government intervention. To this end Brazilian legislators are working on a bill to cut such taxes, he added.
IDC Chile telecommunication research manager Patricio Soto noted that in Chile, more than a national plan for IoT, the country needs a formal declaration of smart city goals and a roadmap of how to achieve them, so as to integrate the many localized initiatives that are underway.

Argentina, Nicaragua make biggest strides in ITU spectrum goal – Regional
Argentina and Nicaragua were the most improved Latin American nations in the last two years with regard to licensing spectrum for broadband, Argentina doubling the amount assigned and Nicaragua increasing it by 60%.
This week’s report by mobile broadband think tank 4G Americas showed that in this period there was a major reshuffle in the top 12 Latin American countries working towards the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) recommendation that countries have 1300MHz of spectrum available for mobile broadband by 2015.
Argentina, Venezuela, Honduras, Ecuador and Bolivia all succeeded in entering the top echelon of the list in terms of the ITU goal, while Uruguay, Costa Rica, Paraguay, Guatemala and Mexico have fallen out of the top 12.
The average amount of spectrum assigned to mobile broadband in Latin American countries is now 314.9MHz, up from 257MHz assigned in mid-2013.
On average, the region has therefore achieved 24.2% of the 1300MHz goal proposed by the ITU for 2015, up from almost 20% in 2013.
In the rest of the world there are some countries that have already assigned more than half the spectrum necessary, and in Latin America Brazil is closest to reaching the halfway mark, with 41.7% of the necessary spectrum assigned so far, or 542MHz assigned.

The information presented and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of CANTO and/or its members