Far EasTone Telecommunications Co Ltd (遠傳電信), the nation’s third-largest telecom, said price competition has waned somewhat in the domestic market, after bigger rival Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信) scrapped a controversial NT$499 (US$16.79) rate plan for unlimited data usage.
Far EasTone president Yvonne Li (李彬) told a teleconference on Friday last week that “this [NT$499 service plan] is a short-term phenomenon among the big three,” referring to Far EasTone, Chunghwa Telecom and Taiwan Mobile Co (台灣大哥大).
“We think that the big three have no intention of initiating a price war in a nearly saturated market,” Li added.
Price competition intensified last month, after Chunghwa extended the service plan to not only civil servants, teachers and military personnel, but also the general public, Li said.
Chunghwa Telecom canceled the plan at the end of last month, but launched new low-tariff programs available to those who sign up online, she said.
As the telecoms are behaving themselves and not making aggressive moves through their retail stores, competition is now back to normal, she added.
To attract new customers, Far EasTone last month teamed up with Line Corp, creator of the Line messaging app, in offering lower-rate Line Mobile services with unlimited data usage.
“This is a new group of users for us, as they are heavily dependent on social media to communicate. They are not heavy users of video streaming, so they do not need a plan that offers a high amount of data,” Li said.
Pricing on the Line Mobile plans is the first in Taiwan to be set according to the plans’ Internet connection speed. For example, subscribers to the NT$299 rate plan would have unlimited data usage at speeds of up to 10 megabits per second, while those who pay NT$399 a month would have speeds of up to 21 megabits per second. Only subscribers to the NT$499 service plan would have full 4G speeds.
Far EasTone reported net profit of NT$2.45 billion for last quarter, matching the company’s forecast of NT$2.4 billion, while earnings per share of NT$0.75 came slightly ahead of its estimate of NT$0.74.
The revenue contribution from new businesses rose to 9.2 percent of total revenue last quarter, from 7.8 percent in the final quarter of last year, with the figure likely to hit 11.8 percent by the end of this year, the company said on Friday.
Far EasTone said it has healthy cash flows and is confident that it will generate about NT$15 billion in free cash flows this year, compared with NT$16.09 billion last year.
BEATING SCHEDULE: Government plans are for nacelle assemblies to be totally local from next year, but Orsted Taiwan said that it was going ‘above and beyond’ Wind turbine manufacturer Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy SA yesterday inaugurated Taiwan’s first nacelle assembly plant at the Port of Taichung, its first assembly facility for offshore nacelles outside Europe. Vice Premier Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津), a long-time champion of Taiwan’s ambitions to become a regional hub in the offshore wind farm industry, described the plant as a “milestone” at a ceremony at the plant. “The completion of Siemens Gamesa’s nacelle assembly plant is a milestone for the development of the offshore wind farm industry in Taiwan and a step toward localizing the supply chain,” Shen said. “This is only the beginning. My great hope
ROBUST DEMAND: 5G, AI and Internet of Things technologies are driving growth and employment, as the company plans a new plant in Hsinchu County Contract electronics manufacturer Wistron Corp (緯創) plans to invest about NT$11.1 billion (US$400.58 million) in Taiwan, in line with its global deployment strategy, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said on Friday. The company’s investment is also a demonstration of robust demand for 5G, artificial intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things applications, the ministry said in a statement. Wistron, spun off from Acer Inc (宏碁) in 2001, is a notebook computer original design manufacturing partner to major PC brands. The company, which is based in Taipei’s Neihu District (內湖), also produces servers, data storage devices, game consoles and communications products for brand clients
CHIPPING AWAY: Hon Hai would use TSMC’s 40-nanometer process to make battery management ECUs for the growing electric vehicle market, it said Manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密) is using Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (TSMC, 台積電) technology to produce its electronic control units (ECUs), as part of its foray into electric vehicle development. In an online Next Forum held by the Hon Hai Research Institute (鴻海研究院) and industry group SEMI on Thursday, Chen Wei-ming (陳偉銘), head of Hon Hai’s semiconductor business group, said the company was using TSMC’s 40-nanometer process for ECU production. Hon Hai is keen to produce ECUs, which are used to control one or more functions in a vehicle, tailored for its customers, Chen said. Although Taiwanese firms command the
TECHNOLOGY Apple’s fee row continues Apple Inc on Thursday rejected a request by Fortnite creator Epic Games to restore its account on the iPhone maker’s iOS platform in South Korea so that it could add its own payment option. Apple is battling a lawsuit filed last year by Epic, alleging that the smartphone maker abused its dominance in the market for mobile apps. Their dispute pivoted to South Korea last week when its parliament approved a bill that bans major app store operators, including Apple, from forcing software developers to use their payment systems, effectively stopping them from charging commission on in-app