Ronnie05's Blog

Indian Telecom Story (Part XIII): Telcos signal delay in MNP

Posted in Industry updates by Manas Ganguly on July 17, 2009

The implementation of mobile number portability (MNP) is slated to be delayed further, with the telecom service providers informing the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) that the phased roll out is not possible.

Further, pan-India readiness is required for the proper implementation of call routing, according to the service providers who had met DoT officials recently. The operators also mentioned that due to delay in completion of various activities, it would be difficult to meet the timelines for MNP implementation. The DoT had earlier set a September-end deadline for the first phase rollout of MNP in the country.

The service providers are seeking an extension of the date and as delays would be considered as violation of DoT’s direction. This means that MNP would be delayed by another couple of months, sources close to the development said.

Earlier in March, DoT had selected two US companies — Syniverse and Telcordia — as technology providers for MNP in the country. Telcordia will implement the technology in south and east, while east and west would be taken care of Syniverse.

India with over 400 million mobile connections, and an addition of around 10 million per month, is second largest telecom market in the world.

For earlier updatess on Indian Telecom refer

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Microsoft brings Gesture Control to Windows and XBox

Posted in Computing and Operating Systems, Value added services and applications by Manas Ganguly on July 17, 2009

Microsoft has been working on gesture recognition as extension on Microsoft gaming console Xbox. The integration of gesture recognition in its gaming console has been named Project Natal. Depth-sensing cameras such as the one Microsoft is adding to the Xbox allow people to control their PCs, game devices, and televisions. Now Microsoft wants to bring Project Natal and its technology to Windows.


Depth camera would connect up to Windows PCs for interacting in terms of meetings, and collaboration, and communication. This was first conceptualized and developed by Microsoft research and is now being commercialized by both the Xbox and Windows units. The Xbox guys and the Windows guys have now latched onto the idea and Microsoft expects the office applications (coupled with Depth sensing camera) can be quite exciting.

In an interview to CNet, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates, “Using your body to control devices makes a lot of sense. I think the value is as great for if you’re in the home, as you want to manage your movies, music, home system type stuff, it’s very cool there. And I think there’s incredible value as we use that in the office connected to a Windows PC. So Microsoft research and the product groups have a lot going on there, because you can use the cost reduction that will take place over the years to say, why that shouldn’t be in most office environments.”

Gates actually dropped the first hint of Natal during his joint appearance with Steve Jobs at the D: All Things Digital conference in 2007

“Imagine a game machine where you’re just going to pick up the bat and swing it, or the tennis racket and swing it,” Gates said.

Moderators Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher mocked Gates, saying such a technology already exists and it’s called the Wii. But Gates disagreed. “No, that’s not it. You can’t pick up your tennis racket.”

He later added, “You can’t sit there with your friends and do those natural things,” he said. “That’s a 3D positional device. This is video recognition. This is a camera seeing what’s going on.”

However, there are doubts about Microsoft’s ability to execute such futuristic moves. It was about 10 years earlier that Microsoft had promised voice controlled computers. 10 years and few many generations of processors later, Microsoft has been no-where close to pioneer voice recognition as an input to computing devices. (It would have put some distance between itself and competitors if it would have executed this strategy). Instead all it has done is to release “delta development” versions, which has left it vulnerable to more innovative competitors.


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Facebook: 250 Million and counting, $6.5 Billion in Valuation

Posted in Social context, media and advertising by Manas Ganguly on July 17, 2009


Digital Sky Technology’s recent purchase of Facebook Common stock has yet again provided a valuation to Facebook. DST’s purchase at $14.77 a share, values Facebook at $6.5 Billion currently. This valuation emphasizes and underscores the status of Facebook as the fastest-growing Internet social networking site’s and its high rank among technology and media industry heavyweights.

While the latest valuation is below the $10 billion valuation set by Digital Sky’s May investment in Facebook, which was for preferred shares, it is significant because, investors have been valuing the social network’s common stock at less than $5 billion in secondary markets in recent weeks. In the weeks prior to Monday’s pricing, investors in secondary markets had been valuing Facebook common stock between $10 and $10.50 a share, or up to $4.7 billion.

The deal suggests that Facebook has a higher market value than many established media and tech companies which generate significantly more revenue than Facebook, including CBS Corp and

CBS, which had $13.95 billion in revenue last year, has a market capitalization of $4.06 billion and had a $4.72 billion market cap at Monday’s market close.

Facebook is expected to breach $500 million in sales this year, and expects revenue to grow 70 percent this year. At $6.5 billion, DST is valuing Facebook common shares at 13 times expected 2009 revenue well above the 2.2x multiple that is common for online advertising-based businesses and even the nearly 6x multiple of Google Inc, the No.1 Internet search engine in the U.S.

Analysts say that Facebook’s lofty multiple was not completely out of line given the strong growth in sales and users that Facebook is generating amid a tough business environment. Essentially, people’s expectations that this could be the next Google.

Facebook recently surpassed 250 million active users on its social network, up from 100 million users less than a year earlier, and vaulting it ahead of rival social network MySpace which is owned by News Corp. In 2007, Microsoft Corp invested $240 million in Facebook preferred shares, snagging a 1.6 percent stake, though that deal also included other elements such as an advertising partnership. That deal had valued Facebook at $15 billion.

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