Fri - 24.11.2017

Russian mobile operator launches free mobile access to social site

Russian mobile operator launches free mobile access to social site

Russia's telephone operator Vimpelkom announced today that its Beeline network provider is teaming up with the country's largest social site, VKontakte, to offer free access to the mobile edition of the site, reported. According to Oksana Belyaeva, Vimpelkom director of marketing for new business tools, almost half of Beeline subscribers with mobile Web access use the Internet for social networking. is a text-only site, as opposed to other mobile versions of the social network, meaning that pages are loaded much faster, reported. Extra material can be downloaded by users and the cost varies depending on the subscription package each user has. Vimpelkom's commercial interest lies in this factor, RIA Novosti informed.

Russian mobile operators are branching out into social networking features because there is a surging interest amongst the population, RIA Novosti explained. Another prominent provider, MTS, launched a mobile Facebook site ( simultaneously alongside Vimpelkom during the summer. A third large operator, MegaFon, has ventures with VKontakte, but hasn't initiated free mobile access to either Facebook or its Russian counterpart yet.

Consultancy firm J'son & Partners also revealed that in the near future, social network users would be putting a more tangible pressure on network operators. That should happen when social sites will be integrated with alternative communication forms such as Skype (which has video calls) and when "heavy" video content will be present across these sites, said Vitaliy Solonin, an analyst at the company.

Users that access social networks from mobile platforms in Russia are expected to grow from 8.3 million in 2010 to 23 million by 2013, J'son & partners predicted, according to RIA Novosti. In addition, users who surf the Web through mobile access will soar from 91 million to 250 million during the same time period.

Image from WAT blog.

Current traffic across all operators amounts to 0.3-0.4 Mbytes or 5 Mbytes monthly, per user. RIA Novosti added that mobile traffic across the globe grew 2.6 times from 2008 to 2009. Data from Cisco also hinted that from 2009 to 2014, the figure will expand by a factor of 39.


Alisa Zykova


2010-10-27 22:09

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