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AFRIK-IT  February 1999

AFRIK-IT February 1999

Subject:

Wireless competition

From:

David Lush <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

African Network of IT Experts and Professionals (ANITEP) List

Date:

Wed, 10 Feb 1999 08:58:31 +0200

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (126 lines)

Any parallels with Africa?


>X-From_: [log in to unmask] Tue Feb 09 20:55:30 1999
>Envelope-to: [log in to unmask]
>Date: Tue, 9 Feb 1999 14:21:05 -0500
>To: [log in to unmask]
>From: [log in to unmask]
>Subject: File 'feb99/pr007411.txt' from NEWSdesk
>Reply-To: [log in to unmask]
>
>HdomoReply
>
>Mon., Feb. 8:  Telecom Act's 3rd Anniversary Cellular Telecommunications
>Industry Association: Wireless Industry Is Model Of Competition in
>Telecommunications
>
>WASHINGTON, Feb. 5 /PRNewswire/NEWSdesk -- "To see what competition will look
>like tomorrow, look at wireless today."  On the third anniversary of the
>Telecommunications Act, on Mon., Feb. 8, this sums up the one unmitigated
>success story in telecommunications competition in the U.S.
>    In his "Agenda for 1999," presented at the beginning of this year, William
>Kennard, Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, noted, "Last year,
>61 million Americans had a cellular phone, and because of competition, these
>phones were of a higher quality, and bills were more than 50 percent lower
>than a decade ago."
>    And while disagreements about how to best encourage competition in other
>sectors of the telecommunications industry, the red-hot wireless industry
>continues to provide Americans with abundant choices, no matter where they
>live.  Competition among wireless service providers has been good for
>consumers, and competition is emerging from the wireless industry into
>traditional landline phone service.
>    In 1996, Congress adopted the wireless model of competition in lieu of
>government intervention for the entire telecommunications industry.
>Competition, which began for wireless carriers in 1983 (when commercial
>service first became available), has been the driving force behind the
>innovation and growth that has characterized wireless telecommunications.
>
>    Competition in Wireless
>    As the first sector of local telecommunications to experience competition,
>the wireless industry has become the model for what consumers can expect as
>other local markets become competitive.  As a result, the wireless industry is
>also at the forefront as government policy evolves from a substitute for
>competition to an enabler of competition.
>    Today, 217 million consumers can choose among three or more wireless
>service providers; more than 157 million Americans live in markets where they
>can choose from among five or more wireless service providers.
>    The wireless competition that began in 1983 with two licensees per market
>was further expanded in 1995 to provide for up to nine carriers per market.
>Consumers have benefited from this expanded choice -- enjoying choice among
>carriers, choice among technologies, and choice among service options.  One
>result is that end-user rates have fallen dramatically, as wireless providers
>have offered new rate plans and service packages.  In some markets, consumers
>can now buy service at half the price they paid in 1995.
>    The June, 1998 CTIA Semi-Annual Data Survey (the most recent figures
>available) reflects the trend.  The average consumer's monthly bill has
>dropped every year since the Association began keeping track:
>
>    YEAR       AVERAGE MONTHLY BILL
>    1988       $95.00
>    1989       $85.52
>    1990       $83.94
>    1991       $74.56
>    1992       $68.51
>    1993       $67.31
>    1994       $58.65
>    1995       $52.45
>    1996       $48.84
>    1997       $43.86
>    1998       $39.88
>
>    Innovation
>    Competition in wireless ensures innovation in the areas of new products,
>processes and services.  Wireless telecommunications providers are involved in
>the on-going reconstruction of reality through innovation.
>    The wireless industry has moved from offering installed "car phones" and
>the transportable "brick" to now offering portables as small as a double-pack
>of chewing gum weighing less than three ounces.
>    Relief from the FCC's original mandate for analog technology has permitted
>manufacturers and service providers to develop a wide variety of digital
>technologies and applications.  Today, more than 20% of all wireless
>subscribers are using these digital technologies.
>    Competition has spurred the emergence of new niche markets for non-voice
>services, relying on digital technologies.  These wireless data services merge
>telephones, computers and mobility.
>    Competition has also spurred wireless entry into new voice markets, such
>as Wireless Local Loop in both rural and urban environments.  In effect,
>wireless services may soon become a replacement for wireline services.
>
>    Safety
>    Wireless is the greatest safety tool since the development of 9-1-1.  More
>than 98,000 emergency calls a day come from consumers using their wireless
>phones, and the wireless industry is working to deploy location technology
>that will enable emergency services to know the location of the call, even if
>the caller doesn't.  In addition, the wireless industry is working with
>automobile manufacturers and emergency service providers to explore how
>Automatic Crash Notification systems could automatically initiate wireless 911
>calls to report and transmit data on the severity and location of a crash, as
>well as to establish voice links with people in automobiles.
>
>    On the third anniversary of the Telecommunications Act, the wireless
>industry and its customers have plenty to celebrate.  To see what competition
>in telecommunications will look like tomorrow, look at wireless today.
>
>    CTIA is the international association for the wireless telecommunication
>industry.
>    News about the wireless industry is available on CTIA's Web site:
>http://www.wow-com.com.
>
>SOURCE  Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association
>CONTACT: Jeffrey Nelson, +1 202-736-3207 or [log in to unmask]; or Tim Ayers,
>+1 202-736-3203 or [log in to unmask], both of CTIA
>NOTE TO EDITORS: If you would like to interview Thomas E. Wheeler, CTIA's
>President and CEO, in conjunction with the Telecom Act's 3rd anniversary,
>please call contact below.
>Web site: http://www.wow-com.com.
>Web site: www.ctia.org
>IN: TLS
>

David Lush
Freelance Journalist
PO Box 8828, Bachbrecht, Windhoek, Namibia
Tel. +264 61 252946
e-mail: [log in to unmask]

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