MTS blog


Monday, November 28, 2011


IBM’s Smarter Planet Blog recently discussed a survey conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit and IBM’s Institute for Business Value on cloud use in the enterprise. Breaking down the evolution of cloud technology into three phases, they declare we’ve now entered the “innovation phase,” characterized as:

1. Taking cost out of the data center via increased utilization of computing resources;

2. Using cloud services to improve business processes and operational effectiveness; and

3.  Innovating–using the cloud to enable new business models and to try them out quickly and inexpensively.


Results from the survey of nearly 600 business and IT leaders:


“Cloud uptake continues at a rapid pace. More than 70% of the respondents said their organizations are piloting, adopting or achieving substantial benefits from cloud computing. Asked what they expect three years hence, that number tops 90%. Even more interesting are the results pointing to innovation as a major goal. Only about 15% said they’re using clouds to create new business opportunities or transform the way they do business today. That number pushes towards 50% in the three-year time horizon.”


Even in these early days of cloud innovation, MTS has already ventured in this market launching a SaaS (Software as a Service) portal in Belarus, where MTS non-consolidated subsidiary operates. The portal, launched in partnership with NEC Corporation, one of the world's leading providers of enterprise business solution, offers SMEs and private customers access to a variety of software products in the cloud. It allows users to reduce costs related to purchasing, installing, upgrading and servicing software. The software bundle includes “1C enterprise”, accounting and ERP software, an application for sending SMS to the contacts base and building promotional web-sites optimized for mobile phones, a basic service for video-conferences on PCs, and a video conferencing service for business customers with enhanced functionality.

By virtue of this project, MTS can test the waters before entering the Russian market for cloud services that – though fairly small today – is expected to grow up to $1.2 billion by 2015 according to IDC forecasts.

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Today we are issuing a report on mobile retail in Russia during Q3 2011, based on the estimates from our mobile retail network. 

Highlights from the report:
- During Q3 2011, the number of phones sold in Russia has increased by 15% compared to Q3 2010 with around 11.4 mln devices sold
- During Q3 2011, the mobile handset market in Russia has expanded by 10% in sales compared to Q3 2010 to reach 47.0 bln rubles
- The average price of mobile phones during Q3 2011 decreased by 5% compared to Q3 2010 to reach 4137 rubles

- The share of budget phones priced under 1500 rubles in the sales mix decreased by 10.2% y-o-y to 30.3% as the sales of the phones in the 1500-4999 range expanded 

- Sales of smartphones in the sales mix in the MTS retail network during Q3 2011 reached 21%

- The HTC Mozart running on the Windows OS was launched in Q3 2011 exclusively in the MTS retail chain 

- MTS continued to roll-out its retail chain by growing its network of franchise stores. At the end of Q3 2011 the total number of MTS retail outlets reached 4017 with 2392 own stores and 1625 franchise stores  

Please download the complete report

Mobile retail report_Q3 2011 Final ENG.pdf (580.19 kb)




Monday, October 31, 2011


Today, we have released our subscriber numbers for the month of September 2011. Below is a table outlining the dynamics of our customer base.

Subscribers (mln)September 30, 2011August  31, 2011Growth
Total consolidated subscribers, mln 101.55 101.40 0.15 0.1%
Russia 70.12 70.19 -0.07 -0.1%
Ukraine 18.99 18.89 0.098 0.52%
Uzbekistan 9.97 9.83 0.14 1.4%
Armenia 2.46 2.49 -0.02 -1.0%
MTS Belarus 1 4.84 4.83 0.02 0.3%

Subscriber data for Russian mobile operators is compiled by Advanced Communications and Media, a management consulting and research agency specializing in telecommunications and media. You can view their September subscriber report here.

1 MTS owns a 49% stake in Mobile TeleSystems LLC, a mobile operator in Belarus, which is not consolidated.

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Wednesday, October 05, 2011

MTS continues to roll-out 3G networks. By the end of the second quarter 2011 we have installed more than 16,000 3G base stations extending 3G coverage to more than 2,000 population centers.  But with this growth comes the challenge of providing electricity to these expanding networks.  Energy expense accounts for a considerable share of the operational cost for telecommunications networks.


With this in mind, it may seem quite bold to publicly announce a goal at MTS of reducing electricity consumption costs by 4%. This goal is one of the metrics associated with the company’s recently-launched Energy Efficiency Program – the other key (and also highly ambitious) goal is a 5-6% reduction in gas consumption costs by the end of 2011.


MTS plans to generate these savings through a number of cost-savings initiatives including:


·         Using M2M modules for online monitoring of energy consumption by base stations and other elements of

          networks' infrastructure;

·         Installation of free cooling equipment for base stations;

·         Utilization of Moscow region hydrogen power as an alternative energy source;

·         Utilization of solar batteries as power sources for base power stations; and

·         Modernization of the lighting system, which incorporates the use of energy efficient light bulbs, adjusting

          lighting levels depending on the time of day.


Along with the cost savings, analysis by GigaOm Pro and Pike Research shows that the world’s telecom companies can expect to see a 42 percent decrease in CO2 emissions through the installation of energy efficient network technology to base stations. So it doesn’t just make good business sense but environmental sense as well.

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Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Alexey Kornya, MTS Vice President and CFO, recently spoke with Forbes' senior editor John Dobosz about Company's current performance and outlook for growth. Check out the video at Forbes website.

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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Today, we have released our subscriber numbers for the month of  August 2011. Below is a table outlining the dynamics of our customer base.

Subscribers (mln)August 31, 2011July 31, 2011Growth
August 31, 2010Growth
Total consolidated subscribers, eop 101.40 101.64 -0.24 -0.2% 97.24 4.16 4.2%
Russia 70.19 70.82 -0.63 -0.9% 69.11 1.08 1.6%
Ukraine 18.89 18.73 0.160 0.86% 17.99 0.90 5.0%
Uzbekistan 9.83 9.60 0.23 2.4% 7.96 1.88 23.6%
Armenia 2.49 2.49 0.00 0.1% 2.18 0.31 14.2%
MTS Belarus1 4.83 4.79 0.03 0.7% 4.62 0.21 4.5%

Subscriber data for Russian mobile operators is compiled by Advanced Communications and Media, a management consulting and research agency specializing in telecommunications and media. You can view their August subscriber report here.

1 MTS owns a 49% stake in Mobile TeleSystems LLC, a mobile operator in Belarus, which is not consolidated.

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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

According to the United Nations World Economic and Social Survey 2011, over 500,000 hectares (1.2 million acres) of Russian forests were lost to wildfires last summer. The BBC reported on the thick smog that blanketed Moscow for almost two months leaving CO2 levels in the air more than three times higher than normal.  Wildfires are common in Russia – as they are in any area with large amounts of forests – and serve as a natural part of the ecosystem regeneration. Unfortunately, however, widespread wildfires have been a recurring theme for our summers the past years.

MTS is bringing technology to fight these fires in an innovative way – by launching a federal early warning system called “Forest Fire Watching”. We have joined forces with LLC Systems of Distant Control who has developed the video-monitoring software. MTS will couple its network with advanced technologies (IP-video monitoring, mobile applications, computer vision) to enable one expert from “command central” to monitor wide areas of forest and pinpoint fire locations. This will enable fire fighters to react faster as well as significantly cut costs. Monitoring points are already operational in some of the Russian regions.
It’s essential that all eyes and ears are on this issue; as such, we’re linking up with young Russian entrepreneurs to make   fire prevention system more efficient. The Forest Fire Watching project was one of the competition winners for youth innovation in telecom at Telecom Idea 2011, supported by the Russian Ministry for Communications and University Higher School of Economics.

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Friday, September 09, 2011

Google's acquisition of Motorola Mobility is being greeted warmly in Russia and other emerging markets.  The high price of smartphones is a real barrier to widespread adoption in emerging markets because mobile phones are not subsidized like they are in the U.S. – i.e. no 2-year contracts.  In Russia and other emerging markets consumers pay full price for a phone unlike in U.S. 

So with the Motorola acquisition Russians are seeing some real bright points. With Google making a bigger commitment to Android via Motorola:

•    the price point for the higher-quality handsets might will be lower and they will be made more available for the average consumers;
•    BRIC countries will receive an infusion of innovation and experience higher usages levels;
•    the impact of better mobiles can be expected to be that much greater given that emerging markets tend to rely more on mobile devices (and all the information and connectivity that brings along) than desktop computers.

This deal will prove to be a tremendous boost to the telecommunications industry given that it will increase competition – thereby, enabling consumers to have access to better and more economically priced mobile phones.

Do you all think this deal is a thumbs-up or a thumbs-down?

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Thursday, September 08, 2011

You may have heard about the ‘gobbling up’ of IPv4 addresses. If not, in a nutshell – in the 1970s, 4.3 billion addresses were created – we blew through those (in particular in recent years given the boom in mobile devices), and now we must make the transition to IPv6 in order to allow more users and devices to communicate on the Internet. (And in case you’re curious, IPv6 allows for three hundred forty undecillion unique IP addresses, approximately.)

So you might be asking, what happens between now and when we’re fully-transitioned to IPv6 – more specifically, what do we have to do?

For most individual users and businesses, particularly small and medium-sized businesses, when we “officially” run out of IP addresses, the impact will not be noticeable; owing to the fact they most likely use an Internet Service Provider that already handles most of the necessary upgrades.  Larger businesses, however, will be required to upgrade hardware, redesign software, etc.  Failure to do so will cause delays and outages.

That being said, we’re still a ways away from fully-transitioning to IPv6.  According to Akamai’s State of the Internet Report only about 0.25 percent of the top one million websites (as rated by Alexa) can be reached through the IPv6 versions of their sites.  Until all devices become IPv6-enabled, and as long as it’s still cheaper to purchase IPv4 addresses, companies will continue with IPv4 as long as possible.

Knowing this and that very few mobile devices in Russia are IPv6-enabled, MTS has turned to Cisco to “expand numbering capacity” through the Cisco Carrier Grade Network Address Translation.

And what do we mean by “expand numbering capacity”?  MTS will translate millions of private IPv4 addresses to public IPv4 addresses.  It will also now be possible to connect new users by offering one address to several subscribers.  Moreover, the capability to extend the system to 80 million address translations will enable MTS to centralize Internet access for several regional mobile and fixed networks.

Experts estimate that this is enough to ensure that MTS can satisfy the demand for mobile internet usage for at least the next 10 years. By implementing this solution from Cisco we are working to solve capacity issues before they become problems – but also paving the way for the proliferation of video content and new online services.



Friday, September 02, 2011

In April Mikhail Gerchuk, MTS Vice President for Marketing, spoke with Mobile World Live, the leading mobile communications resource. Mikhail taked about MTS strategy of offering MTS-branded devices and new market niches MTS is currently exploring. The interview has just been posted at the website. Please use this link to access the video.

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