Maxis to grow 3G user base with new products

  • Business
  • Thursday, 10 Apr 2008

KUALA LUMPUR: Maxis Communications Bhd hopes to grow its active 1.3 million 3G user base with the introduction of three new products.

Chief executive officer Sandip Das said while it was hard to quantify the potential take-up rate for its new services, generally the take-up rate for data usage and 3G services was growing.

“It is very hard to give a projection but we hope to hit our sweet spot,” he said after launching Maxis’ Complete Phone Backup, Email Xpress and Hotlink i-Share by M-money yesterday.

He added that data usage adoption was growing quickly in the country as most Malaysians were Internet savvy.

From left: T. Kugan, Sandip Das and Dr Nikolai Dobberstein at the launch

Currently, Maxis has about 10 million subscribers of which 2.8 million are actively using Maxis’ mobile data services over GPRS (General Packet Radio Service), EDGE (Enhanced Data rates for Global Evolution) and 3G.

Head of strategy and new business Dr Nikolai Dobberstein said the growing demand for data services was encouraging.

“Active 3G user base is growing fast and 3G is definitely taking off in Malaysia,” he said, adding that Maxis had 1.7 million subscribers with 3G handsets but only 1.3 million were active users.

Dobberstein said Maxis was currently working on near field communications (NFC) technology to enable its subscribers to use their mobile phones for payment at Visa payWave and Touch ‘n’ Go terminals.

“We hope to launch the NFC service soon. We are very keen to launch it here but the challenge is to find the devices.

“Currently there are only two NFC-enabled phone models but we believe there will be more NFC handsets by year-end,” he added.

Maxis’ broadband business is also on the rise. Dobberstein said about 900,000 households had Maxis broadband coverage to date.

Meanwhile, head of product development and infotainment services T. Kugan said Complete Phone Backup would safeguard all information such as phone book contacts, short and multimedia messages, e-mail and notes as well as content downloads like ringtones, video and games.

Email Xpress is a real-time push e-mail solution that simplifies access to e-mail on the mobile phone and supports popular email domains like Streamyx, Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo!

Hotlink i-share by M-money is a prepaid service that allows Maxis’ prepaid customers to send airtime value from their phones to family and friends who have prepaid accounts with Indonesia’s leading mobile operators Telkomsel and Indosat.

Kugan said Maxis was also looking at possible tie-ups with countries like the Philippines and India for the Hotlink i-share by M-money service.

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