ASEAN 5G Q2 2021 Roundup: Wider Industry Collaborations Driving Enterprise 5G Ecosystem

Alfie Amir
A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Indonesian telcos have launched 5G networks, while a Malaysian provider has detailed its deployment plan from this year until 2024. In more mature markets, telcos continue to expand their coverage and enterprise capabilities through new partnerships and collaboration initiatives.
  • 5G adoption has been revised slightly upward, driven by new launches and deployment commitments and wider industry collaborations.

Key Enterprise 5G Developments

April 2021 – Singtel Launches GENIE 5G-in-a-Box to Drive 5G Solution Development in Singapore: With 5G Garage and partnerships with AWS and Azure on 5G edge computing, Singtel is taking a further step with its 5G-in-a-box solution to accelerate enterprise 5G development in the country.  The portable and modular solution enables enterprises and device manufacturers to test and experience 5G networking as well as develop new applications anywhere with the need to join Singtel in its testing facilities.  Singtel also recently announced a Melbourne-based innovation center to focus on AI, cloud, and 5G solutions as part of its new enterprise strategy.  This could benefit its telco associates in the region such as AIS, Globe, and Telkomsel in driving the ecosystem and developing new 5G solutions in their respective countries.  (For more, please see Singtel and Ericsson’s GENIE 5G-in-a-Box Will Drive 5G Solution Development in Singapore,” April 13, 2021; and Singtel’s NCS Strategy Hits the Right Notes, but Might be Looking in the Wrong Places,” May 31, 2021. Continue reading “ASEAN 5G Q2 2021 Roundup: Wider Industry Collaborations Driving Enterprise 5G Ecosystem”

Malaysian Telecom Update Q1 2021

Summary Bullets:

Alfie Amir
A. Amir

• The Malaysian telecom market is undergoing a massive change with the 5G special purpose vehicle (SPV) and Celcom-Digi merger announcements.

• Telcos continued to expand their enterprise ICT capabilities to capture the growing opportunity.

This report discusses key trends, market impacts and recommendations for service providers based on major announcements from industry players in the recent quarter and GlobalData Malaysia Mobile Broadband Forecast Q4 2020 and Malaysia Fixed Communications Forecast Q4 2020 published on March 24, 2021.

Continue reading “Malaysian Telecom Update Q1 2021”

Tencent Jumps on the Indonesian Cloud Bandwagon with New Data Centers in the Country

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:            

  • While the competition is increasing, Tencent could capitalize on its early-mover advantage against AWS and Azure and highlight its vertical capabilities.
  • However, there are several competitive gaps it needs to address such as professional services and ecosystem partners.

Tencent is well known in the mass market in ASEAN for its WeChat social media app, JOOX music streaming app, and Shopee e-commerce platform (Tencent is the main beneficiary of Shopee’s parent company with a 39.7% share), each having significantly expanded its subscriber base in the region.  However, very few were aware of the company’s cloud and vertical solutions in the enterprise segment.

Last week, the company launched a new data center in Indonesia, with plans to open another facility in the country in a few months.  The launch is a timely move for Tencent to capture the growing market opportunity despite increasing competition from other cloud players.  To date, Tencent has a total of 61 availability zones across 27 regions, including 20 data centers in 13 locations outside China.  As part of its global expansion plan, it also plans to expand in few other countries, including Malaysia and Thailand later this year. Continue reading “Tencent Jumps on the Indonesian Cloud Bandwagon with New Data Centers in the Country”

Celcom and Digi Merger: The Impact on the Malaysian Enterprise ICT Market

Summary Bullets:

Alfie Amir
A. Amir

• Celcom and Digi’s merger will strengthen the new entity’s IoT and mobility capabilities.

• However, there could be some obstacles the telcos need to overcome.

As Malaysian telcos are still busy reshuffling their 5G plans with the rather unexpected special-purpose vehicle (SPV) approach (for more, please see Malaysia 5G Through SPV: One Step Forward and Two Steps Back, March 8, 2021), the industry was hit again by another major news – the merger of Celcom and Digi. The merger news is not new. Axiata and Telenor announced a merger plan of their regional businesses two years ago but it went quiet since then. The merger news only resurfaced again last week, but this time, the deal is only on the Malaysian business. While Celcom and Digi Merger: The Impact on the Malaysian Telecom Market, May 8, 2019, has covered the impact on the local telecom market, this post discusses the key takeaways in the local enterprise ICT market.

Continue reading “Celcom and Digi Merger: The Impact on the Malaysian Enterprise ICT Market”

ASEAN 5G Q1 2021 Roundup: More Edge Computing and Private Network Developments

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Malaysia has joined Indonesia and Vietnam with its commitment to launch 5G this year, while telcos in the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand are moving to the next deployment phase with a wider focus on standalone (SA) architecture, private network services, and industry collaborations.
  • 5G adoption has been revised slightly upward, driven by the increase in the subscriptions and lower overall mobile users.

Key Announcements

February 2021 – Singtel Launches Singapore’s First Commercial Indoor 5G Network: Singtel expanded its 5G coverage to VivoCity Mall, with plans to extend the coverage to other popular malls in the country this year.  While the focus was mainly on enhancing customer experience through faster speeds (up to 1.2 Gbps), the indoor network is expected to drive new 5G applications in the retail industry such as enhanced shopping experience through AR/VR, personalized customer experience, and smart inventory. Continue reading “ASEAN 5G Q1 2021 Roundup: More Edge Computing and Private Network Developments”

AWS Ramps Up Its Momentum to Capture High-Growth Cloud Opportunity in ASEAN

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • AWS has a comprehensive cloud portfolio and a growing partner ecosystem to address the diverse demand of ASEAN enterprises.
  • It also brings new features such as AWS Outposts in 1u/2u form-factor and greater scalability to address the ASEAN enterprises’ cloud challenges.

In a recent AWS analyst briefing session, the company shared the ASEAN recap of the AWS re:Invent 2020 (held in December 2020) and its business updates in the region. While there are various new products, capabilities, partnerships and initiatives announced at its annual flagship event, some of the key highlights in the ASEAN regions include expanding its footprint and bridging the cloud gaps.

Continue reading “AWS Ramps Up Its Momentum to Capture High-Growth Cloud Opportunity in ASEAN”

How Well Did PLDT and Globe Do in Capturing the ICT Opportunity During the Pandemic?

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • The pandemic is accelerating enterprises’ digital transformation in the Philippines, driving the market to grow at a CAGR of 6.1% in the next five years.
  • PLDT and Globe responded to the market shift with various new initiatives to capture the growing opportunity. PLDT reported a YoY increase of 5.6% in its enterprise ICT revenue, while Globe saw a 3.0% decline.

COVID-19 and Enterprise ICT Spending in the Philippines

It is widely known that COVID-19 has pushed enterprises to spend more on ICT and accelerate their digital transformation. The impact is greater in the emerging market, where business continuity planning (BCP) was not a common thing and enterprises largely relied on traditional IT services before the pandemic. In the Philippines, a recent study by GlobalData shows that 50% of 32 local enterprises increased their ICT budget in 2020 (28% by more than 6%; 22% by between 1% and 5%) to adapt to the new norm. The study also reveals that 56% of the Philippine enterprises are significantly expanding their ICT budget in 2021 by more than 6%. GlobalData estimates that the enterprise ICT services market in the country will increase by 2.3% YoY in 2020 and continue to grow at a CAGR of 6.1% in the next five years to USD 12.2 billion in 2024 (source: GlobalData Market Opportunity Forecasts to 2024: ICT in Philippines,” February 28, 2021). Continue reading “How Well Did PLDT and Globe Do in Capturing the ICT Opportunity During the Pandemic?”

Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint (MyDIGITAL): Key Takeaways for the Local Enterprise ICT Market

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • The Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint, MyDIGITAL, addresses key gaps across different key technology stacks such as cloud, 5G, and cybersecurity.
  • The initiative will accelerate digital transformation in the country; promote wider collaborations between vendors, service providers, and enterprises; and drive the enterprise ICT market.

The Malaysian government launched the country’s digital economy blueprint, called MyDIGITAL, which provides a comprehensive 104-page plan to accelerate the usage and adoption of technologies across the public sector, enterprises, SMBs, and consumers. While there are several other digital initiatives in the country (e.g., Jendela, National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan [NFCP], National Policy on Industry 4.0, National 5G Taskforce, Public Sector ICT Strategic Plan, and many more), MyDIGITAL outlines thorough plans with timelines and expected outcomes that glue all the other initiatives to drive the country’s economy through digital technologies. The next section discusses several key takeaways for the local enterprise ICT market. Continue reading “Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint (MyDIGITAL): Key Takeaways for the Local Enterprise ICT Market”

Telco Edge Computing in ASEAN

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Edge computing is still new in the ASEAN region, with very limited initiatives by providers and enterprises.
  • Providers and enterprises should start exploring the opportunity to gain a first-mover advantage.

The edge computing market is still new, but the ecosystem is developing fast with various initiatives and collaborations announced by key players in the last 12 months. This includes SK Telecom’s recent partnerships with VMware and Dell to offer edge computing in private 5G networking solutions (January 2021), AWS and Vodafone’s collaboration to roll out distributed multi-access edge computing (MEC) services in the UK (December 2020), Ericsson and Telstra’s initiative to develop enterprise use cases in verticals such as agriculture and smart cities in Australia, and many more. Edge computing has become a key focus for every provider across the technology stacks, including hardware vendors, cloud providers, telcos, and device manufacturers. Continue reading “Telco Edge Computing in ASEAN”

5G Updates in ASEAN – Q4 2020: More Countries to Launch 5G This Year, Steady Growth Expected in the Next Five Years

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

• Indonesia and Vietnam have joined the 5G bandwagon in ASEAN with commercial deployments expected later this year.

• The forecast remains stable with 5G subscribers expected to grow from 600,000 in 2020 to 125 million and account for 16% of the total mobile subscribers in 2025.

Key Announcements

October 2020 – Singtel Launches 5G Standalone (SA) Trial Network For Enterprises: Following the launch of its 5G non-standalone (NSA) trial network to the mass market in September, Singtel offers 5G SA network on 3.5GHz frequency band for enterprises to develop and trial 5G solutions. The telco also partners with Ericsson on dual-mode 5G core network solutions and mmWave to enable new enterprise applications and empower the country’s smart-nation initiatives. These initiatives are crucial for Singtel to gain a first-mover advantage as competitors (e.g., Starhub and M1) are expected to launch their 5G SA networks soon. Continue reading “5G Updates in ASEAN – Q4 2020: More Countries to Launch 5G This Year, Steady Growth Expected in the Next Five Years”