2nd January 2012, www.lankabusinessonline.com
Household access to telephones is on par with electricity, television, and radio in Sri Lanka mainly because of the boom in mobile phones, and are set to overtake TV and radio, a new study said.
Access to household phones is greater than to transport in the island, the study of Asian countries by the LIRNEasia think tank said.
SMS (short message service) use, gaming and balance checking has decreased but camera and radio use increased in Sri Lanka from 2008 to 2011, said the study on use of information communications technology, mostly phones, among poor people in emerging Asian economies.
It covered Bangladesh, Pakistan , India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia (Java), Philippines and Thailand.
Access to phones is improving on both personal and household levels, mostly of mobiles with a decline in fixed and public phones, the study said.
And phones are set to overtake TV and radio, it said.
It found that phone use in rural Sri Lanka is on par with urban areas.
The main perceived benefits of phone access in Sri Lanka are emergency communication, maintaining relations and saving on travel.
"The key economic benefit of phones is reducing travel," it said, noting that there was little use of mobiles for productive purposes.
About 71 percent of poor consumers, in a segment known as BOP or bottom-of-the-pyramid, own a mobile with many on a second handset, the study found.
"Multiple-SIM ownership is high in the north and east. The main reason is because of lower call rates.
Cheaper 'on-net' or the same network calls were the main reason for multiple ownership of SIMs or subscriber identity modules used to identify and authenticate subscribers.
Related Info :
• Sri Lanka Telephone Density Reaches 100.8 Lines per 100 Persons in 2010 as Fixed & Mobile Connections Overtake Population