3 Things Singapore’s Telco Investors Should Watch Out For With 1 Of The Potential New Telcos

Singapore’s telecommunications industry currently houses only three players and they are all listed companies, namely, Singapore Telecommunications Limited (SGX: Z74), Starhub Ltd (SGX: CC3), and M1 Ltd (SGX: B2F).

Earlier this month, three companies had submitted bids to become Singapore’s fourth mobile operator. One of them is airYotta, a company that wants to be not just our Garden City’s fourth telco, but the “first data-led telco” here.

Here are three things about airYotta that current as well as potential investors in the incumbent telco trio may want to take note of:

1. Plans to roll out a 4.5G network

Right now, Singapore’s most advanced mobile network standard is 4G. It has not been cheap to implement for the trio of SingTel, StarHub, and M1.

Local newswire Today recently reported that all three local telcos have invested heavily to upgrade their mobile networks. For instance, StarHub has spent over S$1 billion over the years to improve its network. Meanwhile, SingTel’s capital expenditure in the past two years had amounted to S$1.6 billion.

As for airYotta, it wants to roll out a superior 4.5G Advanced Pro network. A Business Times article published on Monday mentioned that airYotta has yet to reveal how much funding it has received, although the company assured the Business Times that it “will be fully funded” for the launch of the network.

2. 4.5G is a better mobile network

It’s worth noting that 4.5G is a far superior network than 4G. Mobile World Live recently reported that 4.5G can provide higher-definition voice and video capabilities than 4G networks. With data speeds of over 1GB per second, 4.5G can also support augmented reality and Internet of Things applications better than the existing 4G network.

3. An unknown price

There are two key questions that remain. First, will airYotta even win the bid to be Singapore’s fourth telco? Second, assuming that airYotta wins, what will the company charge subscribers for its mobile services?

If airYotta is somehow able to offer cheaper and yet better mobile networks, then the incumbent trio of SingTel, StarHub, and M1 could face a tough fight in the future.

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore contributor Ong Kai Kiat does not own shares in any companies mentioned.