The Indonesian cellular market is heating up and becoming more lucrative as demand for mobile phones continues to increase. Indonesia is the fourth most populous country in the world with 230 million people and mobile subscribers of 98.15 million as of the first quarter of 2008, a penetration rate of 39%. The penetration rate indicates that there is still room for growth in the country’s cellular market. The shape of the market is expected to undergo change as a number of new operators, with foreign partners, like Singapore Telecommunications Limited (Singtel), SingaporeTechnologies Telemedia (STT), Telecom Malaysia, Hutchinson, Maxis, and Qatar Telecom QSC, enter the market.
The GSM Association, the global trade association for the mobile industry, announced that the number of Mobile Broadband (HSPA) connections in Indonesia has surpassed the number of fixed broadband connections. At the end of 2007 - just one year after the launch of HSPA in Indonesia – 315,000 Indonesians were accessing the Internet via this high-speed mobile technology, according to Wireless Intelligence, while fixed-broadband connections were approximately 300,000. Indonesia has four HSPA networks—deployed by Indosat, Excelcom, Telkomsel, and Hutchison 3 Indonesia--and competition among operators to offer broadband services using HSPA is intense.
According to the CDMA Development Group (CDG), the total number of CDMA2000 subscribers among all six carriers exceeded 16.3 million by March 2008 - making it the leader in Southeast Asia for 3G CDMA subscriber growth. At the end of 2007 the total number of CDMA2000 subscribers was 14.4 million, up from 7.8 million at the end of 2006. CDG attributes the increase in large part to the availability of ultra low-cost handsets and affordable tariffs, which are critical to technology and service expansion in emerging markets.
By Kalung Riang