RealTime IT News

Singapore Aims To Be Regional E-Commerce Hub For 25 Leading Companies

Singapore introduced major e-commerce initiatives to generate business of about US$2.4 billion by year 2003.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore commissioned a study on how the financial sector can leverage IT. Over the next five years, the Economic Development Board has set itself the target of anchoring at least 25 of the leading logistics, manufacturing and services companies to set up their e-commerce operations in Singapore.

Web Traffic Analyser Companies Struggle Over U.S., European Markets
Numerous "Web miner" companies are now targeting the site analysis software market.

Aiming at the enterprise end of the market are network-based Web site activity analysers from companies such as Andromedia, Marketwave and Accrue.

In Britain, Associated New Media, the online arm of Associated Newspapers, is using Andromedia's Aria package on its "This is London" information site. The software is also used on its UKplus UK-specific search engine, and on Soccernet.

Net.Genesis has a long client list which includes CBS, Dupont, Siemens and the BBC.

(Financial Times, Britain; September 30, 1998)

Thai Agency To Offer Internet Phone Services
The Communications Authority of Thailand (CAT) said it plans to offer Internet phone service from the beginning of next year.

The service will include "PC-to-phone" and "phone-to-phone" calls. CAT Deputy Director Thamnoon Julmanichoti says it is the mission of the CAT to offer any telecommunications-related service needed by the public.

CAT also plans to expand its public Internet service via kiosks--CATNET--in an effort to allow Internet access for those who do not have computers.

(Bangkok Post; September 30, 1998)

Indian States Line Up To Launch Community Net Access With WorldTel
More state governments in India are discussing projects for the launch of public access Internet services with World-Tel.

West Bengal and Kerala are following Tamil Nadu in community access projects. A project in Gujarat has also been considered.

The model for Internet to be established in each state would be suited to the local conditions. For instance, Tamil Nadu has industrial centre clusters whereas Kerala has large Persian Gulf-based overseas traffic.

(The Hindu, India; September 30, 1998)

Toyota, Sony to Team Up with Japanese ISP to Offer Datacom Services
Toyota and Sony, two of Japan's biggest manufacturers, announced plans to launch a data communications service.

They are in talks with ISP Internet Initiative Japan (IIJ) about forming a new company to offer data services for corporate clients in Japan.

"The telecommunications infrastructure will provide us with new business opportunities both in hardware and software," a Sony spokesman said. The new company reportedly aims to offer large-capacity, low-cost data services, with user fees set at about one-third to one-fourth those now charged by Nippon Telegraph and Telephone.

(Economic Times, India; October 1, 1998)

Australian Web Publisher Seeks to Raise Capital for Massive Two-Year Effort
Internet content developer LibertyOne plans to float on the Australian Stock Exchange within the next two months to raise capital for more than $20 million expenditure on Web publishing.

LibertyOne signed a $30 million joint venture with Internet portal Excite to raise the Internet profile of media staples of LibertyOne's major shareholder, JB Fairfax Press.

LibertyOne plans to spend between $18 million and $20 million on Web page development during the next two years.

(The Australian; October 2, 1998)

German Internet Users Plan Online Boycott to Protest High Access Rates
In a move similar to the online boycott in Spain a month ago, modems across Germany will fall silent on November 1st, and Web pages will go dark in a protest targeting Deutsche Telekom and its high Internet access fees.

German consumer activists hope a 24-hour strike will draw attention to what they claim are sky-high rates charged by the monopoly telco's T-Online service. In a recent poll by a German computing magazine, 80 percent of those surveyed vowed to stay off the grid on strike day.

(Wired news; October 1, 1998)

E-Commerce Is Like a Typhoon, Says IBM CEO Gerstner in Japan
Governments have to end monopolistic telecommunications structures and encourage competition so electronic commerce can flourish, said IBM chairman and chief executive Louis Gerstner during the recent IBM Fair '98 in Tokyo.

"Electronic commerce is like a typhoon sweeping through business practice as the world moves to a new millennium," he said to an audience of more than 90,000 people. "Many of us will play an active role in the creation of a sage, secure, global medium of human and business interaction, as well as the largest, most dynamic, restless, sleepless marketplace of goods, services and ideas the world has ever seen."

(InfoTech Weekly, New Zealand; September 28, 1998)

New Zealand Agency Launches Credit-Checking Service Via Internet
Debt collection agency Creditmens launched New Zealand's first Internet-based credit-checking service for reporting on individuals.

The system sends consumer credit details across the Internet with a Kiwi-made encryption process. The database has 145,000 records.

About 150 customers have signed up to the Creditmens Internet service. The service is reportedly ideal for retail outlets, who will be charged $4 per query.

(InfoTech Weekly, New Zealand; September 28, 1998)

Worldwide Internet Population May Reach 300 Million By Year 2001
The Internet Industry Almanac, a new reference book from the U.S.-based Computer Industry Almanac, is predicting that total number of people online will reach 300 million by year 2001, up from 100 million at the end of 1997.

Britain will have more than 17 million people online by 2001. Russian and China will have 5 million and 3.8 million users respectively.

(Internet Magazine, Britain; September 28, 1998)