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COAI celebrates World Telecom and Information Society Day 2018 with a vision



NEW DELHI: The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) said that it has celebrated World Telecom and Information Society Day 2018 (WTD 2018) with a vision to build and foster a digitally-empowered nation.

Aligned with the theme of 2018, ‘Enabling the positive use of Artificial Intelligence for All’, COAI firmly believes that India will be one of the fastest adopters of Artificial Intelligence (AI) based services.

On the occasion of WTISD 2018, COAI is thankful to the Ministry of Telecommunications for providing the continuous support to the telecom sector and its expansion to every nook and corner of the country and delivers uninterrupted connectivity till the last mile. Emphasising on the urgency of expanding digital literacy and capacity building, COAI pushed for requisite reforms in order to actualise the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s vision of Digital India.

Over Rs 10.4 lakh crores have been invested so far by Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) in building a world class telecom infrastructure. More than 3 lakh Base Transceiver Stations (BTSs) were added in last one year taking the total count to approx. 17.64 lakh BTSs.

The proliferation of telecom infrastructure in the rural and remote areas have upped efficient connectivity and improved usability of telecom services. TSPs had already established infrastructural blue-print for services ranging from 3G to 4G, now they are taking adequate measures to build the foundation for emerging technologies such as 5G, AI, IoT, M2M, etc.

With constantly shifting demands of the telecom ecosystem, a greater focus is being laid by Department of Telecommunications on the implementation of the Right of Way Policy at the State level. COAI welcomes the adoption of Right of Way (RoW) Rule 2016 by 6 States viz. Rajasthan, Haryana, Odisha, Maharashtra, Assam and Tripura.

Odisha Policy has also been adopted by the Department of Telecommunications as the ideal policy for implementation for all states across India being one of the most comprehensive tower policies. The rules mandate development of an electronic application process within one year of the roll-out of ROW rules, single clearance window for application, designation of nodal officers, and fast-tracking decision on RoW permission upto 60 days to enable swift deployment of new telecom infrastructure, thus significantly aiding to improve socio-economic growth.

The industry is also thankful to the Ministry of Defence (MoD) on notifying the policy for installation of telecom infrastructure in cantonment areas under the tri-services. The policy covers allotment of defence land on lease for static towers as well as permission to use land on a licence basis for placing cell towers on wheels, permitting use of rooftop in government and private buildings, including private land in military stations to registered infrastructure providers. This policy will help improve coverage gap and reduce call drops in and around military stations and cantonment areas.

COAI congratulates Department of Telecommunications (DoT) for introducing a detailed framework on the National Digital Communications Policy 2018 (NDCP 2018). It has been successful in identifying long pending concerns of the telecom industry. The draft policy has proposed to rationalise multiple taxes and levies including license fees, spectrum usage charges and the universal service obligation fund, GST etc. Apart from paving the way for the development of telecom and digital services in the country, it would also create 40 lakh new jobs, thereby providing a fillip to the skill-set improvement. The proposed investment of USD 100 billion in the communication industry will not only make communication services accessible to everyone, but also provide much needed relief to the industry.

As another positive aspect in the telecom sector, COAI also welcomes TRAI’s recommendations on Ease of doing business and in-flight connectivity. If executed in conjunction to licensed service providers, it will provide a secure network and create a steady revenue stream for telcos and airlines alike.

Rajan S. Mathews, Director General, COAI, said, “AI is a crucial enabler for achieving the national goals in the areas of healthcare, education and capacity building. With a positive ecosystem, driven by better connectivity and a financially robust sectoral health, AI will unveil possibilities hitherto unparalleled.”

“We are thankful to the Government of India and DoT for the unstinted support provided to the financially moribund telecom sector. With the release of draft National Digital Communications Policy 2018, India will be the forebearer for next generation technologies, which will provide the country a roadmap towards socio-economic progress. The draft’s comprehensiveness, focus and lucidness set clear strategies to propel India on the path of a global knowledge revolution,” he said.

“The NDCP 2018 recognises spectrum as a natural resource and therefore will ensure adequate availability, efficient usage and putting together a fair and transparent allocation method for service providers. Having taken cognizance of the steep cost of spectrum, the policy has also suggested for adopting optimal pricing to ensure sustainable and affordable access to digital communication. The final policy will give a final shape to guide the evolution of telecom industry in the country.” added Mathews.

The Indian Mobile Congress (IMC) which was held in September 2017 and is now scheduled for 25th – 27th October 2018 is also showcasing to the world, the importance of the Indian telecom industry and the attention it rightfully deserves. Once the economic backbone, the sector has emerged as one of the biggest growth drivers for the nation.



Ericsson signs $8.3 billion 5G deal with Verizon



NEW DELHI:Ericsson said that it has signed $8.3 billion agreement with Verizon to provide its industry-leading 5G solutions to accelerate the deployment of Verizon’s world-class next-generation 5G network in the U.S.

Niklas Heuveldop, President and Head of Ericsson North America, says: “This is a significant strategic partnership for both companies and what we’re most excited about is bringing the benefits of 5G to U.S. consumers, enterprises and the public sector. We’re looking forward to working with Verizon to leverage solutions like Cloud RAN and our Street Macro, adding depth and versatility to 5G network rollouts across the U.S.”

“With this new agreement, we will be able to continue driving innovation and widespread adoption of 5G,” said Kyle Malady, Chief Technology Officer for Verizon. “We are pleased to continue this work through our long-standing relationship with Ericsson.”

Under this $8.3 billion USD agreement, Verizon will deploy Ericsson’s 5G MIMO C-band, low-band and millimeter wave (mmWave) solutions to enhance and expand Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband coverage, network performance and user experience. Ericsson’s technology solutions, including Massive MIMO, Ericsson Spectrum Sharing and Ericsson Cloud RAN, complement the high-performing Ericsson Radio System portfolio to support 5G services. Ericsson’s industry-leading software functionality provides end-users with the speed and performance they expect from 5G networks.

In 2020, Verizon was the first communications service provider to receive a commercial 5G mmWave Street Macro base station from Ericsson’s award-winning new state-of-the-art U.S. smart factory in Lewisville, Texas. Ericsson is committed to building and accelerating the nationwide build-out of 5G across the country.

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Mobile Services

Comviva launches next gen digital wallet and payment platform-mobiquity Pay X



NEW DELHI: Comviva, the global leader in mobility solutions, today announced the launch of mobiquity Pay X, its next generation digital wallet and payment platform.

Mobiquity Pay is amongst the world’s largest digital financial services platforms, powering over 70 digital wallets and payment services for 130+ million consumers and processing over 7 billion transactions exceeding USD 130 billion annually in more than 50 countries.

With its new next generation mobiquity Pay X platform, Comviva has enhanced all aspects of digital financial solution, including scalability, faster deployment and time to market, simpler user lifecycle management & experience and enhanced security.

This new platform is completely built on microservices based architecture with fully independent and reusable components. The enhanced modularity facilitates faster time to market and greater scalability.

Mobiquity Pay X has enabled Open APIs to easily integrate with third party systems and extended financial ecosystem. To enhance user experience, the platform now offers a revamped slicker mobile app for consumers, agents, merchants and other business users and provides an advanced User Management System (UMS) that allows back-office users to easily manage the complete lifecycle of consumers, agents, merchants, and other business users seamlessly. Its intuitive user-interface, predefined templates and real-time feedback help quickly perform operations.

The new platform significantly strengthens security with robust authentication and authorization modules. It provides complete flexibility to easily configure various PIN, password and access rules as per the requirements. Its advanced session management capabilities help identify all active sessions and logins from a user through multiple devices and takes corrective action to prevent frauds.

Speaking on the launch, Srinivas Nidugondi, EVP and Chief Growth and Transformation Officer at Comviva, said, “COVID has significantly accelerated the growth of digital financial services and the entire financial ecosystem is growing at its fastest pace ever. Customer demand and public health priorities are pushing contactless payment adoption and our next generation mobiquity Pay X platform shall help financial service providers scale their digital wallet and payment services faster and seamlessly. With this new platform, Comviva has completely automated the software delivery process. The time to market has improved significantly with continuous product development, integration, testing, release and deployment.”

Mobiquity Pay X offers Order and Payment System that provides consumers a unified view of transactions performed by various payment instruments. It provides end-to-end tracking of entire payment transaction across all stages. It also enables back-office users to view status of payment transactions and identify failed and ambiguous transactions to take corrective actions like refund to complete the order-payment cycle.

The new mobile app is built using best-in-class design practices and has rich features including self-registration, biometric login, profile personalization, payment through multiple instruments (prepaid wallet, card, bank account), favourite transactions, multi-currency support, currency conversion, real time transaction tracking, referral bonus, merchant/agent locator, dynamic QR Code and many more.

With an enhanced monitoring and alerting system, mobiquity Pay X quickly aggregates system logs and key performance indicator data and provides a real-time bird’s eye view of critical operational parameters through visual dashboards. mobiquity Pay X has capability of proactive disaster management by identifying threshold breaches for critical application and system parameters in advance and providing real-time notifications for corrective actions.

Comviva has pre-integrated best-in-class technology in the areas of digital KYC and Personal Financial Management (PFM) to offer unparalleled value to consumers. These pre-integrated solutions in addition to offering enhanced experience to consumers, also significantly cut down cost and time to market while launching a digital wallet service. The platform also offers a document management system that provides flexibility to back-office users to quickly retrieve KYC documents a centralized repository for regulatory and business purpose.


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IT rules 2021 empowering, protecting users, asserts Ashwini Vaishnaw



NEW DELHI: IT and communications minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Sunday said the new information technology rules are empowering and protecting users.

He added that the new IT rules will ensure a safer and more responsible social media ecosystem in India.

“Reviewed the implementation and compliance of Information Technology Rules, 2021 along with my colleague Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar ji. These guidelines are empowering and protecting users and will ensure a safer and responsible social media ecosystem in India,” Vaishnaw said on a social media account.

The new rules which came into effect from May 25 mandate social media companies to establish a grievance redressal mechanism for resolving complaints from the users or victims.

All significant social media companies, with over 5 million user base shall appoint a grievance officer to deal with such complaints and share the name and contact details of such officers.

The big social media companies are mandated to appoint a chief compliance officer, a Nodal Contact Person and a resident grievance officer. All of them should be a resident in India.

Twitter, which had been in the eye of the storm over its alleged failure to comply with the new IT rules in India, has named Vinay Prakash as its Resident Grievance Officer for India, according to the company’s website.

However, Facebook-owned Whatsapp has challenged the new IT rules for social media intermediaries requiring the messaging app to trace chats and make provisions to identify the first originator of information, saying they violate the right to privacy and are unconstitutional.

Whatsapp further alleged the requirement of intermediaries enabling the identification of the first originator of information in India upon government or court order puts end-to-end encryption and its benefits at risk.

Some of the media houses have also challenged the new IT rules and the matter is sub-judice.

Source: Press Trust of India

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