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Monday, December 18, 2017
Re-verify mobile numbers online from January 1, 2018: DoT to telcos

Re-verify mobile numbers online from January 1, 2018: DoT to telcosMobile phone users will have to wait till January 1, 2018 for re-verifying their mobile numbers through Aadhaar, without visiting the retail outlets of telecom companies.
NEW DELHI: Mobile phone users will have to wait till January 1, 2018 for the comfort of re-verifying their mobile numbers through Aadhaar, without visiting the retail outlets of telecom companies. Foreign nationals who do not have Aadhaar and did not have the option to get their mobile numbers re-verified will be able to do so by visiting their carrier’s retail outlets and submitting their passport details, the telecom department said Friday. A telco representative can also visit the subscriber.

The DoT mandated telcos to re-verify mobile numbers belonging to non-resident Indians (NRIs) and senior citizens above 70 years not having Aadhaar or their mobile number registered with Aadhaar, besides physically challenged people, by using systems created by telcos on their websites.

Those having mobile numbers registered with Aadhaar will be able to use 14546 as an interactive voice response system (IVRS) helpline number for generating one-time password (OTP), for getting their mobile numbers re-verified.

“The licensee must ensure that the above mentioned category of subscribers shall be able to re-verify their mobile connections through these alternative methods by January 1, 2018,” the DoT said in a notice on Friday, detailing processes for five sub-categories of subscribers.

“The licensee shall use 14546 as the non-metered short code for IVRS based OTP authentication process the re-verification of mobile subscribers,” the department added in an 18-page note, which was also issued to telecom players.

The telecom department has specified the processes telcos have to adopt for doing the re-verification online for each of the subset of subscribers, while addressing the issue of changes in customer acquisition form or CAF, which was flagged by carriers. The DoT has now allowed telcos to use electronic forms or e-CAF while completing the re-verification process on their websites.

The clarity from DoT will now allow carriers to put processes in place and begin online re-verification from January, 2018. For instance, telcos will have to create a web portal or page specifically for NRI customers. It also addressed the demand of carriers to provide an extension of four to six weeks to implement the government-mandated processes.

ALSO READ: Telcos suggest user-friendly innovations for rural customers to spur mobile-Aadhaar linking

"We're looking into and evaluating the processes that have been defined by the DoT," said Cellular Operators Association of India, which represents all carriers including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India, Idea Cellular and Reliance Jio.

The DoT has been mandated by the Supreme Court to re-verify all mobile numbers, and had set the deadline of February 6, 2018. With a month-long delay, meeting the deadline looks tough.

“In case required, we can seek an extension from the apex court. But if the new methods are adopted, it will fasten the process of verification manifold,” a DoT official said, but did not mention whether the call for seeking the extension has been taken internally.

The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) had said mid-last month that mobile phone users will no longer need to visit stores of telcos from December 1, after the DoT identified three methods of re-verification of mobile phone numbers – to use OTP or one-time password generated through SMS, IVRS and through the telcos’ mobile apps – to ease the process of re-verification.

DoT, in October, had also allowed re-verification through iris-based biometric devices and at the doorsteps of consumers who are unable to use OTP or fingerprint authentication or who are incapacitated and cannot go to retail stores. While telcos submitted the processes for approval to DoT and UIDAI, the latter turned down the option of OTP through SMS, citing security issues.

It is unclear at the moment if the DoT has disallowed home visits. (Source: ETTelecom)

Wipro, Cisco collaborate for smart lightings

Wipro, Cisco collaborate for smart lightingsIt is aimed at delivering better user experience, save on energy and operating expenses as well as reap the benefit of Internet of Things (IoT) in workspaces, it added.
NEW DELHI: Wipro Lighting, part of Wipro Enterprises, said today that it will collaborate with networking major Cisco to be its Digital Building Solutions provider for connected lighting in India. The tie-up will bring together Wipro's art & Connected Lighting systems and Cisco's solutions that link various building services through a single, converged IP network together, it said in a statement.

It is aimed at delivering better user experience, save on energy and operating expenses as well as reap the benefit of Internet of Things (IoT) in workspaces, it added.

Wipro Lighting Vice President & Business Head Anuj Dhir said: "With the emergence of the IoT and big data, smart and connected digital lighting is the way forward as it will bring intelligence & functionality into lighting systems."

Daisy Chittilapilly, MD, Partner Organization, Cisco India and SAARC said both the companies aim to accelerate adoption of these solutions in the market and deliver increased comfort and efficiency.

"These new connected lighting solutions will greatly simplify the deployment experience, lower total cost of ownership, offer pre-validated architecture and ecosystem integration among players," the statement said. KRH SA (Source: PTI)

BlackBerry signs license deal with Florida's BLU, ends patent dispute

BlackBerry signs license deal with Florida's BLU, ends patent disputeBlackBerry Ltd said on Thursday it signed a new license agreement with BLU Products Inc, a Florida-based maker of low-end Android phones, that would end patent disputes between the two companies.
- BlackBerry Ltd said on Thursday it signed a new license agreement with BLU Products Inc, a Florida-based maker of low-end Android phones, that would end patent disputes between the two companies. Canada's BlackBerry filed lawsuits against BLU in 2016, as part of the handset-maker-turned-software-company's move to make cash off a bunch of technology patents it had collected in its heyday.

Thursday's agreement will include on-going payments from BLU to BlackBerry, the companies said, but did not give further details.

The settlement will allow Blackberry "to focus on further licensing opportunities in the mobile communications market," said Jerald Gnuschke, senior director of Intellectual Property Licensing at BlackBerry.

BlackBerry, which holds about 40,000 worldwide patents and applications, has been long been focusing on software sales and licensing after its once-popular phones lost out to Apple and others in the smartphone industry. (Source: REUTERS)

Samsung partners with KDDI for the first 5G demo on a high-speed train

Samsung partners with KDDI for the first 5G demo on a high-speed trainSamsung Electronics has partnered with Japanese telecommunications operator KDDI for the first demonstration of 5G on a high-speed train. The partners conducted the world-first test on a train traveling at over 100km/h (over 60 mph) along a section of track where the distance between two stations was approximately 1.5km (nearly 1 mile).

While the distance is not as far as what consumers will be hoping for in terms of coverage along transport routes, it nevertheless shows that high-speed 5G data can be delivered to high-speed vehicles.

During the demonstration, the companies achieved a successful downlink and uplink handover as well as a peak speed of 1.7 Gbps. It was conducted in the city of Saitama in Japan, near Tokyo.

As 5G is yet to be finalised, KDDI used Samsung’s pre-commercial end-to-end solution composed of a 5G router (CPE), radio access unit (5G Radio), virtualised RAN, and virtualised core.

Yoshiaki Uchida, Senior Managing Executive Officer at KDDI, says: “In collaboration with Samsung, KDDI has opened up the possibility for new 5G vertical business models, such as a high-speed train. With 5G expected to bring railway services to a whole new dimension, the success of today’s demonstration in everyday locations such as a train and a train station is an important milestone indicating 5G commercialisation is near."

“To fulfill our aim to launch 5G by 2020, KDDI will continue exploring real-life scenario experiments for diverse 5G use and business cases together with Samsung.”

KDDI and Samsung tested potential new use cases for such high-speed mobile connectivity including uploading 4K video taken from a camera mounted on the train. An 8K video was downloaded via the on-board CPE showing the potential for operators and passengers alike.

“The potential that 5G holds is powerful enough to transform the landscape of our daily lives,” said Youngky Kim, President and Head of Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “The success of today’s demonstration is a result of our joint research with KDDI, which we will continue to pursue as we explore next generation networks and use cases. This will include research on diverse spectrums and technologies, as well as new business models and applications.” (Source:Telecomstechnews)

Bharti Airtel PAT expected to leap 9-fold by 2020-2021: CLSA

Bharti Airtel PAT expected to leap 9-fold by 2020-2021: CLSACLSA said it expects Bharti Airtel to achieve “a 7% CAGR in average revenue user (ARPU) over FY18-21 amid rising data adoption".

KOLKATA: Bharti Airtel is likely to deliver 16% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) in operating income and a ninefold jump in profit after tax (PAT) between 2017-18 and 2020-21 on the strength of its countrywide data network and execution, brokerage CLSA said.

CLSA said this is the case even as the 57% cut in interconnect charges and Reliance Jio Infocomm’s feature phone push could keep earnings in the fiscal‘s second half under pressure. On the contrary, the brokerage said it expects Idea Cellular’s cash flows to remain under pressure and gearing to worsen in the coming months amid falling operating income.

CLSA said it expects Bharti Airtel to achieve “a 7% CAGR in average revenue user (ARPU) over FY18-21 amid rising data adoption,” though the market leader saw a 23% year-on-year fall to 145 on this key metric, following Jio’s disruptive entry in September 2016.

Bharti Airtel, the brokerage said, has already benefitted from the exponential surge in data usage triggered by Jio’s launch of 4G services, recording a fourfold jump in its persubscriber data usage levels at 4 GB per month. Experts said that though Bharti Airtel initially lost data customers when Jio’s services were free, it has managed to add more than eight million subscribers once the Mukesh Ambani-led telco started charging for its services from April.

Bharti Airtel’s pan-India data network, they said, allowed the market leader to be more nimble in responding to Jio’s tariffs, resulting in lower churn. CLSA said that Airtel’s 66 million data subscribers account for only 47% of the market leader’s urban subscriber base, reflecting “immense opportunity to grow data revenues in the coming quarters."

ALSO READ: UIDAI asks Airtel to explain by Dec 4 opening of bank A/cs sans consent

“Idea has reported losses every quarter since Jio’s launch, and a 47% on-year fall in operating income in 2QFY18 coupled with a 48% rise in net debt to Rs 54,000 crore (due to spectrum purchases last year) has resulted in the telco’s net debt to Ebitda ratio rising to an uncomfortable 9 times operating income,” the brokerage said.

Airtel, CLSA said, added 22 million customers in the first year of Jio’s operations, more than three times higher than the no. 2 carrier Vodafone India’s seven million and twice Idea’s 11million during the period. The market leader’s revenue market share (RMS) has also gained 100 basis points (bps), or one percentage point, to 33% in metro circles since Jio’s launch while Vodafone and Idea saw theirs shrink by 200 bps and 100 bps to 31% and 10% respectively. (Source: ET Bureau)

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