08.18.2009 08:04 AM
Indonesia mobile TV debut launched by PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia, PT Indosat

The race is on to roll out mobile TV in Indonesia. The Jakarta Globe reports that two of the country’s biggest telecommunications companies, PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia (Telkom) and PT Indosat (Tren Mobile TV) are launching mobile TV services in hopes of gaining a market advantage.

Tren Mobile TV is a consortium formed by MNC group, RCTI, TPI, Globaltv and Indovision — all subsidiaries of media mogul Hari Tanoesuibyo’s PT Global Mediacom company — with Indosat as its strategic partner. Tren's TV service is also available on DVB-H-enabled handsets and via the Internet.

Two Telkom subsidiaries, PT Telkomsel and its pay-TV operator Telkomvision, will provide eight channels, including CNN and National Geographic as part of the trial. The operators have interim mobile digital TV licenses and are obliged to familiarize the public with the service by providing it free before receiving commercial licenses. “It’s government policy to encourage Indonesians to migrate from analog to digital,” said Communication and Information Technology Minister Muhammad Nuh.

“Telkom has invested about US$1 million to get to the trial stage,” said Ermady Dahlan, Telkom’s network director. “To cover the greater Jakarta area and the commercial rollout of mobile digital TV in the first half next year, the company will invest between US$6 million and US$7 million on infrastructure and equipment.”

In a market driven by intense price-cutting for the past year, Telkom now has 76 million mobile customers, up 45 percent from a year ago, but this quarter, Telkom's mobile ARPU fell 25 percent with net income for the first half dipping 4 percent, although revenue grew 1.5 percent and minutes of use more than doubled to 68.1 billion.

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