Mobilink launches GPRS service … finally!

Business Recorder reports that Mobilink has launched its long awaited GPRS service. The initial release is limited to post-paid Indigo subscribers in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad. The service requires a new subscription add-on costing Rs.500 per month (promotional offer according to their site). Included in the subscription is the ability to send unlimited ‘peer to peer’ MMS, unlimited browsing and full access to their newly launched WAP portal (flash demo of portal here).

Mobilink’s competitors Telenor and UFone have long provided metered GPRS services at Rs.15 per megabyte, though neither competitor offers a portal experience similar to Mobilink’s.

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8 Responses to “Mobilink launches GPRS service … finally!”

  1. Anonymous says:

    expensive500 rs. plus tax is very expensive… for light usage 15rs/meg is much cheaper. Still, finally, only a couple of years after first saying they would be launching gprs real soon now they’ve done so.

    The only problem is the 500rs a month excludes many people who want to try it out…

  2. chowkidar says:

    RE: expensiveIn the U.S., GRPS offers some good value because people are often on the move (there are no drivers/servants) and they allow users to monitor highway traffic and routes, check their stock tickers, get news updates, check mail and coordinate their meetings and conferences. In essence, their infrastructure has heavy technological integration and GPRS access allows them to tap into it very easily.

    I don’t see much use of GPRS in Pakistan and frankly I don’t believe this will catch on. It will be a passing fad at best.

  3. admin says:

    RE: expensiveThe killer application is remote net connectivity. People could use their GPRS mobile phone as a wireless modem for their computer. Instant wireless net connectivity is a good application for remote areas in Pakistan. Mobilink’s current rs 500 for unlimited connectivity offer is not a bad deal, less than Cybernet’s CyberHispeed at 630/month if someone wants to switch over. Though, I would not use it as my main net connection ;-D.

  4. KO says:

    RE: expensiveyoure forgetting taxes add 33 percent to 500 and its not so cheap anymore. I’ve used mobilink gprs, and its not fit to use as toilet paper, let along as a internet connection. It couldn’t even load the Google WAP page in a couple of minutes, and thats the fastest and smallest site possible.

  5. Anonymous says:

    must start for prepaid usersMobilink must start its gprs service for prepaid users in less expenssive tariff like RS:2 per mb to RS:5 par mb max .
    If they are pioneers in mobile industry.

  6. chowkidar says:

    RE: expensiveThat sounds good in theory but you are outlining a very niche market and I doubt that such a market segement could have any significant impact on the bottom line of the GPRS service providors. Besides, how many people in the rural sector would you expect to have laptops and GPRS modems.

    Further, from the article you link, if you use your mobile phone as a modem then the bridge is through infrared which is certainly a bottleneck. Bluetooth may offer some relief. You’re still talking about a high-tech setup even from an urbanite standpoint.

    Corporate adoption of this could be interesting though (DHL comes to mind).

  7. haq says:

    RE: expensiveGiven that most of the populus in urban areas does not have access to broadband and it’s much simpler to get a new mobile connection than a PTCL fixed line, I’d say this can be used in cities like Karachi as well.

    Though, as KO mentioned is his comment, the quality of GPRS connections is probably not upto the standard right now. According to this current generation mobile phones can be expected to xfer _max_ 1.5-2x speed of the current phone lines.

  8. admin says:

    RE: expensiveIn theory that sounds good. In practise this won’t hold simply because of network load issues–same thing that plagues broadband cable, except that your neighbourhood will be competing for a more exotic resource: GPRS. It don’t think it will be feasible at those levels in terms of cost, nor throughput (KO’s claim is testimony to the latter).

    (I am not sure if populus is a word).