DESPITE the spread of web-enabled smartphones and tablets in Cambodia, internet service providers expected the number of fixed-line app-lications to grow, two industry insiders said yesterday.
“With the advent of tablets and faster smartphones, it’s inevitable that people will use their devices more and more for the internet,” Paul Blanche-Horgan, the CEO of ISP EZECOM, said.
“However, this is more of a ‘mobile medium’ and as the country develops and people have more disposable income, we would expect fixed-line internet traffic via Internet service providers to increase exponentially too.”
Blanche-Horgan said EZECOM saw smartphone use as an introduction to the internet for many Cambodians.
“We would fully expect those using smartphones to migrate to fixed-line internet applicat-ions provided by internet service providers for their home use shortly thereafter.”
Mann Sobon, sales supervisor of Mega Investment & Telecom, said only 30 per cent of phone users in Cambodia had smartphones.
“There’s still a lot of space for internet providers on the market. We plan several new services to satisfy our customers and gain their loyalty,” he said.
In 2013, the two year-old company, which serves 10,000 private and 50 corporate customers, aims to increase its clientele about 10 per cent.
The Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications counted nearly 2.5 million internet users (17.5 per cent of the population) in last year’s telecom statistics. Meanwhile, 19.8 million SIM cards were in use.
Blanche-Horgan said internet use through ISPs was growing significantly.
“At the end of 2011 the estimated number of users stood at 500,000 to 600,000, and we expect that to have grown to at least 700,000 by the end of 2012,” he said.
“We expect this to be dri-ven by more varied use of the internet, with applications such as e-commerce and entertainment becoming more and more popular.”
The biggest players on the local smartphone market are Nokia, LG and Samsung, in a strong brand competition.