In a leaked letter to the securities regulator, Thailand’s largest mobile operator Advance Info Service said it would be expanding into the fixed broadband market with an initial budget of $144 million (4.6 billion baht) of which $31 million (1 billion) is expected to be used in the first year.
AIS told the regulator that Thailand's fixed broadband market is worth $1.7 billion (56 billion baht) and currently only has 4.8 million households subscribed, or a market penetration of just 24%.
The market is expected to expand by 2 million households over the next four years, from which the telco has set a target of attracting 80,000 subscribers.
The filing also said that AIS would be taking advantage of the synergy between mobile and fixed and will be offering convergent packages going forward.
State telco TOT has meanwhile announced plans to add Wi-Fi hotspot capabilities to some of its 10,000 public telephone booths in greater Bangkok to boost flagging revenue.
The telco said that revenue per payphone had fallen to $8.11 (260 baht) a month per phone compared to $9.30 (300 Baht) a month last year.
However, new installations are still being carried out in new shopping center developments and there is a need to maintain the network for emergencies and when mobiles do not work.
Nationwide, Thailand has 216,629 coin-operated payphones. 165,000 are TOT’s, 26,000 in Bangkok belong to True and 25,000 out of Bangkok payphones belong to concessionaire TT&T.