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  • May 11, 2001

    Global Handset Market 2001

    At the current CSFB tech conference in Barcelona Ericsson stated that the expected handset market for 2001 will now be at lower end of its previously stated range of 430-480m; both it & Nokia said the reason was cuts to handset subsidies in Europe. Whilst we are relieved that our early emphasis on the impact of changes in operator strategies on the handset market in Europe has been proved right, we are in the process of revising upwards our own forecast of 300-350 million units based on growth in China (this forecast and spreadsheet will shortly be available). For the future, we expect data traffic to slow given strong signs of a plateau in demand among businesses and changing residential payment models. However, we forecast a gradual evolution towards profitable ISP business models based on unsubsidised pricing for all forms of access. Indeed, we expect overall pure Internet access revenues to continue to grow until the latter part of the decade. This is plainly contrary to all those who predicted access would be free for all and a loss-leader for other forms of revenue, such as online advertising, e-commerce commissions and eCRM (direct marketing).

  • May 8, 2001

    Digital TV Update

    We have published extensively on digital TV in the past 18 months, consistently casting doubt on the potential of TV-centric interactive platforms to (a) generate enough income for operators to repay hardware subsidies and (b) compete with the PC for home shopping activity (t-commerce). We see a clear distinction between the relative success of Sky and the continued slow growth of ITVdigital and the real difficulties being experienced by cable operators. Sky is gaining business while the other operators are struggling to retain their share. This is the first of two notes. In the first (attached), Chris Goodall examines the financial prospects of Sky in advance of its results next week. Chris looks at what would be good or bad numbers for Sky's results in all the main categories, and suggests reasons for short-term optimism. In our next note, which will be sent out on Monday, I analyse ITVdigital and question whether anything can be done to improve its prospects. The launch of ITVsport does not help, with its huge programming budget and limited opportunities.

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    May 5, 2001

    Pay-TV – When Will the Corner be Turned?

    Chris Goodall has dissected the economics of the major pay-TV operators. He finds that if current trends continue, BSkyB, NTL and Telewest will not generate the cash to pay back their debt in the foreseeable future. In the case of the cable companies this leaves the debt holders exposed. Equity holders should be concerned about further dilution from future debt to equity conversion.

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  • April 15, 2001

    ITV Licence Renewals

    This note considers the so-called 'digital dividend' in light of the recent ITV licence renewals. The UK online population reached 17 million in February 2001, up around one-quarter on the year, on the strength of rising participation of women (to 44% of users) and of young people. We expect 4 million users to be added to the online population by February 2002, to reach 21 million, with growth at a lower rate than in 2000.

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    April 9, 2001

    European B2C E-Commerce Update

    This report updates our July 2000 report on European B2C e-commerce, with a special focus on the UK market. We estimate that global net adds were 48m in Q2, down from 58m in Q1 2001. The total net adds so far this year of 106m is 53% of our full year forecast of 201m for these territories, which supports our forecast of 375 million units shipped given that net adds will likely continue to decline in Q3 followed by the seasonally strong Q4.

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    April 5, 2001

    UK ISPs

    The UK online market is among the most mature in Europe: while strong growth continued during 2000 (60% increase in home users), this was less dramatic than in Germany and France.

  • March 15, 2001

    Microsoft: Will the Giant Engulf the Mobile Phone Industry?

    The purpose of this report is to look in more detail at the actual capital expenditures that 3G operators can be expected to make. We show that costs will be very much lower than expected. This is because most operators will be able to offer a good service to large numbers of customers by installing relatively few base stations. This is excellent news for operators, but infrastructure vendors such as Ericsson and Nokia will see much lower volumes of equipment orders than most analysts are projecting. The evidence for our conclusions is derived both from an analysis of actual 3G infrastructure orders and from an analysis of theoretical capacity.

  • March 15, 2001

    Microsoft .NET – The Oil Tanker Turns

    Microsoft has never made much impact on the Internet. As a result, we still have a proliferation of standards and competing suppliers of the underlying technology, of which the most obvious is Java. Almost all the new generation of Internet access devices, such as phones, PDAs and TVs, all use underlying software that does not work well with Microsoft technology. Genuine interoperability is not yet available. The key points we make are as follows:

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    March 5, 2001

    Wireless – Current Ideas and Issues

    We see European handset shipments down from 140-150 million in 2000 to 100 million in each of the next two years.

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    February 20, 2001

    Sonera Smart Trust

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    February 15, 2001

    The Digital Bomb?

    By contrast, NTTDoCoMo is putting its money firmly behind mobile data. Its investment plans in Japan provide capacity for huge amounts of data transmission. Three years from now, NTTDoCoMo will have invested, it says, 1 trillion yen (10bn Euros, if our maths is correct) in obtaining 6 million 3G customers. This investment, it says, will be enough to handle over 15m subscribers and provide coverage of 97% of the population. The major services it mentions as needing 3G bandwidth are music downloads and 'image clipping'.

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    February 5, 2001

    Gambling and Gaming on TV

    Oftel appears to believe that such an arrangement would be acceptable if it 'allowed the delivery of 3G services earlier and at lower prices' than would otherwise be the case. It notes that the 3G licences do not ‘a priori exclude infrastructure sharing' and that some forms of sharing, e.g. masts, are positively encouraged.

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    January 15, 2001

    Wireless

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  • Orange
    Orange
    January 10, 2001

    The Orange Prospectus

    The Orange Prospectus. We have forecast that the increase in the number of users during the whole of 2001 will be as follows

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    January 9, 2001

    Broadband Update

    Broadband update document.

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