New Delhi: the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) today sought comments from various mobile operators for the growth of value-added services that include policy framework and support infrastructure to usher in inclusive growth, reports PTI.
The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham) has released a study paper, titled 'Mobile Value Added Services (MVAS)-a vehicle to usher in inclusive growth and bridge the digital divide' on which TRAI is seeking comments from various service operators by 11th February, the telecom regulator said in a statement.
The paper has identified issues for the growth of MVAS industry, including policy framework, support infrastructure and high equilibrium ecosystem.
At present, the contribution of VAS to the total revenue of Indian telecom operators is just 9%-10%, which is significantly lower when compared with developed markets.
The potential for VAS revenues appears all the more significant at the present juncture, given that India is set to introduce third generation (3G) services nationwide, a standard that allows operators to offer wide range of advanced services.
As the telecom industry sees a rapid decline in voice tariffs, it is looking at services beyond standard voice calls or MVAS to propel it to the next level of growth. With mobile penetration expected to go up to nearly 100% by 2015 and the advent of 3G, MVAS revenues are expected to grow to Rs48,000 crore.
Some of these services are those in the 'Utility MVAS' category-MVAS which seeks to digitally empower citizens by providing efficient access to essential information and services and foster inclusive growth.
Utility MVAS includes segments like M-Infotainment, M-Connectivity, M-Enterprise, M-Commerce, M-Health and M-Agriculture.
While there are plenty of challenges that face the Utility MVAS space today, the opportunities are tremendous, given the mobile phone's growing reach and the advancement of technology including the foray of 3G.
The reach and penetration of mobile phones can ensure the delivery of a large number of services in a cost-effective, fast and seamless manner even without physical access as is seen from such initiatives around the world.
This makes mobiles phones the perfect medium to deliver a variety of content and services, or as referred to in popular parlance-MVAS-to the Indian population.