Mobiles and Emerging Markets
3G Portal has a white paper on increasing mobile penetration in emerging markets:
In brief, the challenge is to accelerate the adoption of wireless services in ways that are both affordable to the end user and profitable for the operator.
An industry observer based in the Asia region described this approach of lowering the cost for subscribers and operators as a dual-market approach to the emerging market scene.
Edmund Tee writing for Asia Tele.com said This approach is, in a nutshell, a focus on enabling an operator to turn a profit selling voice airtime to low-income consumers in rural areas, while still providing an infrastructure that can scale up to data services in the city centres where the higher spending subscribers reside.
This Dual Market strategy therefore recognises that in one emerging country, there are two markets that need to be served. The high-income users with a high ARPU but accounting for a small minority of the countrys population and the populous low spending customers where mobile penetration is usually tiny.
However with a successful strategy to serve this latter half of the Dual Market, the low-ARPU consumer represents the biggest opportunity to grow the mobile phone user base exponentially within that market.