Internet Drive

(L-R) : Jeevith Senaratne, Director Operations - Star Garment Group; Shanaka Rabel, Group Chief Digital and Transformation Officer - Stretchline Holdings Ltd; Janaka Botejue, Chairman – Bernard Botejue Industries; Sanjeewa Kodikara, Chief Information Officer- Hirdaramani Group

Aug 21, 2012 (LBO ) – Dubai based Etisalat Sri Lanka unit, the island’s third largest celco says it is pushing mobile broadband in a bid to increase internet penetration in the island though challenges remain for broader use. Mobile broadband is one of the fastest growing sectors in telecoms in Sri Lanka where fixed access is shrinking and growth in voice mobile is slowing.

Data from Sri Lanka’s telecom regulator shows that mobile internet users grew to 765,000 by end June 2012 from 485,000 in December 2011. In the same period fixed access users grew to 380,000 from 359,000.

Dumindra Ratnayake, chief executive at Etisalat Lanka says his firm will push internet penetration in the island further.

The firm plans to increase the penetration through smart phones and mobile devices.

“We had two ways to do it. One is penetrating through computers to make users the internet at homes and the other one is the mobile devices, Rathnayake said.

“Today anyone who has the smart phone or a device is accessible to the Internet. So when we launch the internet facility we decided to go strongly with mobile devices with low cost, because we wanted to create that space.”

Officials say there is a language barrier

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