ICT Clippings | September - October 2012

Top Story: Philippine Supreme Court Halts New Cyber Crime PreventionAct

IN THIS UPDATE:

Regional
+ ASEAN Set to Spur Investments for Region's SME | Inquirer, Oct 1

+ ASEAN Firms Seen to Hike IT Innovation Budget by Nearly 40%: IDC | CIO, Sep 7

+ Bridging the digital divide with the Cyberkids Programme | The Star, Oct 4

                    

Myanmar
+ Myanmar's Latest Telecoms Reforms Unlock New Opportunities for Multinational & Regional Firms | PRWeb, Sep 18
+ Myanmar launched first ever debit cards | Sep 17
                   

Brunei Darussalam
+ Seeking software growth | Borneo Post, Sep 23

                       

Philippines
+ Philippine Supreme Court Halts New Cyber Crime Prevention Act | Examiner, Oct 12
+ Why PHL lags in science and technology | GMA, Oct 12
+ IT-BPO growth to be sustained, to deliver $16B next year | ABS, Oct 10
+ Internet TV sales double in the Philippines | RapidTV, Oct 5
+ Philippines and ITU Launch ICT Statistics Portal | FutureGov, Oct1
+ Angaraconfident SC won't strike down cyber law | Inquirer, Oct 8
+ Philippines and Mobile Banking | Manila Bulletin, Sep 30
+ Mobile broadband accounted for 7.3 percent PHL's economic growth since 2000 | GMA, Sep 25
+ Philippines fastest growing smartphone market in SE Asia | ZDNet, Sep 17

Cambodia
+ Cambodia sets up telco regulatory body | ZDNet, Sep 21


                      

Singapore
+ 1/3 world's population has Internet; S'pore top for affordability | ST, Oct 11
+ More centres, courses for seniors to pick up ICT skills | Today, Sep 29
+ Next-gen Super Wi-Fi pilot projects deployed in Singapore | ZDNet, Sep 19
+ Singapore's Rising Tech Industry Draws Expat Innovators And Investors | NPR, Sep 17
+ E-govt services put Singapore at No. 1 | ChannelNewsAsia, Sep 8
                  

Indonesia
+ Govt to omit English from primaryschools | Jakarta Post, Oct 11
+ Founder of DailySocial sees potential in Indonesian tech scene, but critical point not reached yet | e2, Oct 10
+ Indonesia delays 3G auction amid Telkomsel bankruptcy | ZDNet, Sep 21

                  

Thailand
+ Thailand to host long-awaited 3G auction next week | BangkokPost, Oct 102
Thai tablet market quadruples in Q2 | ZDNet, Oct 2
+ New Permanent Secretary for MICT | FutureGov, Oct 1
+ Thailand gives $30M boost for free Wi-Fi project | ZDNet, Oct 1
Thais trail in mobile workforce survey | BangkokPost, Oct 1 
 

Malaysia
+ Boost for nation's digital economy | New Straits Times, Oct 10
+ Malaysia 2013 Budget takes analogue approach to digital economy: IDC | MIS Asia, Oct 9 
Malaysia 2013 Budget takes analogue approachto digital economy: IDC | MIS Asia, Oct 9


                  

Vietnam
+ Electronics industry in dead throes, VN has to start again from scratch | VietNam Net, Oct 8
+ 5 factors boosting Vietnam's e-commerce space in 2012 | E2, Oct 8 
+ U.S. Lends Vietnam $118 M Loan For Satellite | VoA, Oct 1
+ Vietnam to Build Online Visa Issuance System | FutureGov,Oct 1
+ Pressing economic woes, lack of tech savvy making Vietnam's Internet crackdown a losing battle | The Reporter, Sep 28
+ Vietnam Emerges as a New Contact Center Outsourcing Location | DestinationCRM, Sep 25
+ Viet Nam to provide 4G services in 2015 | VietNamNews, Sep 24
+ Exits signal new age for VN telecoms | VietnamNews, Sep 23
+ Vietnam ICT hasn't grown up, but getting old | VietnamNet, Sep 18
+Vietnam's 2012 ICT White Book released | VOVNews, Sep 6

REGIONAL

ASEAN Set to Spur Investments for Region's SME | Inquirer, Oct 1

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations has approved a development project that will encourage investments in small and medium enterprises throughout the region.

The Asean-backed project, which was launched last week, involves the development of 19 case studies in three priority SME sectors: agro-processing, electronics and information and communications technology.

ASEAN Firms Seen to Hike IT Innovation Budget by Nearly 40%: IDC | CIO, Sep 7

Corporate budgets for IT-led innovations in the Asia South market are seen to increase next year due to rising operation costs and increasing pressures to engage customers on new platforms.

Bridging the digital divide with the Cyberkids Programme | The Star, Oct 4

THE Maxis Cyberkids Programme began with the Maxis Cyberkids Camp in 2002, as part of a joint effort with the Ministry of Information Communications and Culture (MICC). Its objective was to narrow the digital divide in rural schools by creating awareness of basic ICT applications and an understanding of the Internet for primary schoolchildren.

BRUNEI DARUSSALAM

 Seeking software growth | Borneo Post, Sep 23

Encouraging innovation in the industry and investing in its infrastructure, Brunei Darussalam has made information and communications technology (ICT) a pillar of its ambition to become a knowledge-based economy. However, hopes that a nascent software sector would boost the Sultanate's export economy faced strong competition from Asian rivals.

CAMBODIA

Cambodia sets up telco regulatory body | ZDNet, Sep 21

Cambodia on Thursday officially launched the Telecommunications Regulator of Cambodia (TRC) which will be responsible for overseeing the country's telecoms sector. The TRC will govern rules and regulations in the sector with authority over spectrum and fair-price setting by telecoms operator, said Minister of Posts and Telecoms So Khun at a launch ceremony, Xinhua news agency reported on Thursday.

INDONESIA

Govt to omit English from primary schools | Jakarta Post, Oct 11

As part of a curriculum overhaul that will come into effect next year, English will no longer be a subject taught in elementary schools, says Deputy Education and Culture Minister Musliar Kaslim...The planned trimmed subjects include math, science, social studies, local content and self -development.

Founder of DailySocial sees potential in Indonesian tech scene, but critical point not reached yet | e2, Oct 10

As tech entrepreneurship continues to grow in Indonesia, founder of leading local tech blog DailySocial shares his takes on what really is happening on the ground. Looking to learn more about the progress that the Indonesian startup community has made over the past year, e27 interviewed Rama Mamuaya, the founder of leading Indonesian tech blog DailySocial and organiser of Sparxup. Rama shared some of his thoughts and opinions on what has been happening and how things are changing in the local scene.

Indonesia delays 3G auction amid Telkomsel bankruptcy | ZDNet, Sep 21

The tender for more 3G spectrum is postponed for the fourth time, as the government mulls over a situation where the country's largest telco Telkomsel, is potentially disqualified after it was controversially declared bankrupt. 

MALAYSIA

Boost for nation's digital economy | New Straits Times, Oct 10

MALAYSIA has mapped out six new initiatives to drive the Digital Malaysia Programme, which is tailored to increase the information and communications technology sector's contribution to the country's revenue. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said they would be anchored on the three key strategic thrusts of Digital Malaysia, dubbed as "game changers".

Malaysia 2013 Budget takes analogue approach to digital economy: IDC | MIS Asia, Oct 9

Malaysia's 2013 Budget proposals appear to be an 'analogue' approach to achieving a developed digital economy by the year 2020 though some of the initiatives should have an impact on Malaysia's ICT future, according to analyst firm IDC.

Digital Malaysia Program is on Track | Business Times, Sep 27

The Digital Malaysia programme is on track with the gradual implementation of its first eight projects with a cumulative targeted gross national income (GNI) of RM270.75 million by end-2013. In a statement today, Multimedia Development Corp (MDeC) said the projects' progress reported to the Digital Malaysia steering committee has also seen investment commitment of RM187.47 million from the private sector.

MYANMAR

Myanmar's Latest Telecoms Reforms Unlock New Opportunities for Multinational & Regional Firms | PRWeb, Sep 18

Poised at the brink of major changes in its telecommunications segment, Myanmar's telecoms market is opening up for significant foreign investment, as multinational firms, local companies and various investors rush to invest in what is touted as the last Asian frontier market. Myanmar Posts and Telecommunication (MPT) recently revealed that telecommunications may soon be liberalized, which could mean many new investment opportunities.

Myanmar launched first ever debit cards | Sep 17

For the first time ever, consumers in Myanmar's cash-dominated economy have been given the opportunity to use cards for shopping, dining and travel. The debit cards were launched on Friday (14 September 2012) in cooperation with 17 banks, and will allow customers to take out cash from any ATM across the country and make payments in a small number of shops, restaurants and offices.

PHILIPPINES

Philippine Supreme Court Halts New Cyber Crime Prevention Act | Examiner, Oct 12

The government recently passed the Cyber Crime Prevention Act of 2012. The goal of this law is to combat hackers, online piracy, identity thieves, spammers, and online child pornography. (See Note 2). These are all noteworthy crimes and should be targeted. However, the law does not end there. The law also reaches online libel, pornography, and file-sharing. These areas, especially online libel, have proven to be highly contentious and have drawn harsh criticism and protest similar to that unleashed by protesters in the United States against SOPA and PIPA. (See Note 3).

Why PHL lags in science and technology | GMA, Oct 12

The Philippines lacks qualified manpower in science and technology, US Ambassador Harry K. Thomas told an entrepreneurship forum this week, citing a USAID study, and noted intelligent Pinoys prefer to live abroad.

IT-BPO growth to be sustained, to deliver $16B next year | ABS, Oct 10

Major players in the information technology - business process outsourcing (IT-BPO) see the strong growth of the industry being sustained next year with a 20 percent growth in revenues and employment generation. Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP) sees revenues generated by the industry hitting $16 billion next year or $2.6 billion higher than the projected revenues of $13.6 billion this year. This would be at par with the expected growth this year from $11 billion last year. In terms of job generation, BPAP expects 926,000 full-time employees next year from about 772,000 this year and 638,000 lastyear.

Internet TV sales double in the Philippines | RapidTV, Oct 5

Consumers in the Philippines are continuing to embrace internet-enabled TVs and flat screen technology according to analyst firm GfK Philippines. GfK Philippines' report shows that flat panel TVs comprise the key driver of category growth in the consumer electronics sector, with sales up 55% by value during first seven months of the year.


Philippines and ITU Launch ICT Statistics Portal | FutureGov, Oct 1

The ICT Office of the Department of Science and Technology together with the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) launched the Philippine ICT Statistics Portal (PHICTS ) which aims to supply needed ICT statistics on demand for policy makers, researchers and the general public.

Angara confident SC won't strike down cyber law | Inquirer, Oct 8

The Supreme Court might strike down some of the provisions of the controversial Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 but not the entire law, Senator Edgardo Angara said on Monday.

Philippines and Mobile Banking | Manila Bulletin, Sep 30

In a meeting hosted by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, USAID recently got together with BPI-Globe BanKo, G-Xchange, and Smart Communications to push further the frontiers of mobile banking. This will be through the implementation of the Scaling Innovations in Mobile Money (SIMM) Project. O'Neill stressed that mobile technology, of which the Philippines is a trailblazer, is actually "a safe and stable way to create a new financial system." Over the past few years, the USAID has worked extensively with mobile network operators Globe and Smart. It is planning to expand cooperation to deepen financial inclusion in the countrythrough technological innovations.

Mobile broadband accounted for 7.3 percent PHL's economic growth since 2000 | GMA, Sep 25

Just one out of every 25 Filipinos is able to connect to the Internet, but mobile Internet consumers managed to consistently raise the country's GDP by 0.32 percent annually for the past decade. According to the Broadband Commission for Digital Development report entitled, "The economic impact of broadband in the Philippines," broadband technology accounted for 7.3 percent of all economic growth in the country over the past ten years.

Philippines fastest growing smartphone market in SE Asia | ZDNet, Sep 17

The smartphones market in the Philippines grew the fastest among Southeast Asian countries over the past year, which also recorded the fastest increase in marketshare versus feature phones. In a report Monday, GfK Asia said the market share of smartphones in the Philippines grew from 9 percent to 24 percent within the year. Smartphone volume sales grew 326 percent in the last 12 months, it added.

SINGAPORE

1/3 world's population has Internet; S'pore top for affordability | ST, Oct 11

More than a third of the world's population is online, while mobile phone uptake increased by more than 600 million last year to around six billion, a United Nations agency said on Thursday.

More centres, courses for seniors to pick up ICT skills | Today, Sep 29

There will be more infocomm training locations and computer facilities dedicated to seniors, in the drive to help Singapore's older citizens adopt new technology.

Next-gen Super Wi-Fi pilot projects deployed in Singapore | ZDNet, Sep 19

The Singapore White Spaces Pilot Group (SWSPG) and founding members the Institute for Infocomm Research (I?R), Microsoft, and StarHub earlier this month announced the first commercial pilot deployments of TV White Spaces (TVWS) technology in Singapore. TVWS refers to the unused VHF and UHF frequency spectrum in the TV broadcast bands, and which is being used to deliver wireless broadband connectivity. Because TVWS belongs to the lower frequency bands, it comes with inherent lower-power and longer-range characteristics. Alluding to its data-centric focus, the technology is alsobeing referred to as Super Wi-Fi.

Singapore's Rising Tech Industry Draws Expat Innovators And Investors | NPR, Sep 17

Lower taxes weren't the only thing that attracted Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin when he made his new home in Singapore in May. The World Bank lists Singapore as the easiest place to do business. Increasingly, money and talent are drawn to the city-state's tech sector.

E-govt services put Singapore at No. 1 | ChannelNewsAsia, Sep 8

A landmark survey measuring the Web's use, utility and impact on people and nations saw Singapore placed overall just outside the top 10 - among 61 countries - despite the Republic ranking highly in terms of communications infrastructure, including boasting the fastest broadband speeds in the world.

THAILAND

Thailand to host long-awaited 3G auction next week | BangkokPost, Oct 10

After years of delays, Thailand's top three mobile telephone operators will bid next week for licences to provide third-generation (3G) services in the kingdom, regulators said Tuesday.

Thai tablet market quadruples in Q2 | ZDNet, Oct 2

Thailand's tablet market experienced "exceptional growth" during the second quarter of 2012 with shipments reaching 466,000 units, says IDC. In a statement Tuesday, the research firm said the Thai market saw a 300 percent growth over the 100,000-plus units shipped in the second quarter of 2011, and represented a 127 percent jump over the first quarter of this year.

New Permanent Secretary for MICT | FutureGov, Oct 1

Thailand's Ministry of ICT today welcomes a new Permanent Secretary, Chaiyan Peungkiatpairote whose promotion is effective on October 1, 2012.

Peungkiatpairote, 55, is a veteran official who has spent 28 years working in public sector. His last position prior to this promotion is Deputy Permanent Secretary for ICT Ministry.

Thailand gives $30M boost for free Wi-Fi project | ZDNet, Oct 1

Thailand's National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) committee has agreed to grant 950 million baht (US$30.78 million) to support the country's existing free Wi-Fi project.

The committee, which oversees funding for the development of telecoms and broadcasting in the country, also added that on Oct. 10, it will consider granting the funding for the roll-out of its free Wi-Fi service in up to 150,000 new spots over the next three years, The Nation reported on Monday.

Thais trail in mobile workforce survey | BangkokPost, Oct 1

Thailand lags behind the rest of the world in terms of a mobile workforce, according to a new report by computer services company Citrix.

Only 10% of Thai companies surveyed said they were actively working on "mobility" solutions, well below the 21% average for Asia Pacific and 24% global average, said the firm's Workplace of the Future report. Citrix, a company which specialises in virtualisation, networking and cloud-computing technologies, surveyed 1,900 senior IT business professionals in the report.

VIETNAM

Electronics industry in dead throes, VN has to start again from scratch | VietNam Net, Oct 8

Vietnam welcomed a series of foreign electronics manufacturers in 1995-1998, which it believed would help the electronics industry. The four big Japanese brands set their foot in Vietnam at that time were Sony, Panasonic, JVC and Toshiba, which then joined forces with Vietnamese partners to set up electronics joint ventures.

5 factors boosting Vietnam's e-commerce space in 2012 | E2, Oct 8

Vietnam Internet veteran, Minh Bui, share his opinions on the five key factors helping to support the local e-commerce space. According to the InternetWorldStats, Vietnam has more than 30 million Internet users, the fastest growing Internet market of Southeast Asia in term of growth rate, just second place in term of total users behind Indonesia with 50 milion Internet users. So what is the e-commerce trend here?

U.S. Lends Vietnam $118 M Loan For Satellite | VoA, Oct 1 

The United States says it will give Vietnam a loan of more than $100 million to buy a telecommunications satellite from a U.S. company.

The U.S. Export-Import Bank Monday said the Vietnamese state-owned company, Vietnam Post, will use the satellite to meet the growing demand of telecommunications and television markets. Ex-Im says the satellite will provide coverage to Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Thailand.

Vietnam to Build Online Visa Issuance System | FutureGov, Oct 1

Come July 2013, foreigners will be able to enjoy the convenience of applying for an entry visa in Vietnam thanks to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' new online visa issuance system.

The system, with an estimated cost of about USD 1 million, aims to manage visa issuances for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' (MOFA) Consular offices in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Danang, as well as for all Vietnamese representative offices abroad.

Pressing economic woes, lack of tech savvy making Vietnam's Internet crackdown a losing battle | The Reporter, Sep 28

The Internet has become the principal staging ground for dissent in Vietnam, and its Communist rulers are trying to clamp down with new laws, stepped up arrests, intimidation and longer prison sentences. But so far, it's a battle they are losing.

Vietnam Emerges as a New Contact Center Outsourcing Location | DestinationCRM, Sep 25

Vietnam's economic growth rate has been among the highest in the Asia Pacific region in recent years. With customer service becoming a key focus in Asia Pacific, Vietnam is improving customer relationships for the purpose of greater loyalty, brand recall, and profitability.

Viet Nam to provide 4G services in 2015 | VietNamNews, Sep 24

Viet Nam will delay licensing mobile operators to provide fourth generation network (4G) services until 2015, after service providers carry out test runs and an assessment of market demand for the new technology.

Exits signal new age for VN telecoms | VietnamNews, Sep 23

Vietnamese telecom companies were no longer reliant on foreign partners, resulting in the withdrawal of foreign-invested companies from the domestic telecoms market, said an official in a report published by Vietnam Investment Review.

Vietnam ICT hasn't grown up, but getting old | VietnamNet, Sep 18

The products and solutions displayed at the 2012 information technology and communication (ICT) expo have astonished the public, because they have been too familiar and uninspiring to people.

Vietnam's 2012 ICT White Book released | VOVNews, Sep 6

By the end of 2011, Vietnam had 127.3 million mobile phone owners, 10.2 million landline subscribers and 30.5 million Internet users. These figures were released by the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) in Hanoi on September 4.