Armenia – Telephone today and in Soviet times… UPDATED

Beeline and VivaCell-MTS telecommunications companies together claim to have over 2,6 million mobile subscribers. Adding to that the army of over 650 thousand fixed-line phone subscribers in Armenia, we will have an impressive figure, roughly equal to that of official population data for Armenia:  3 million 239 thousand.

The numbers for mobile phone subscribers by the abovementioned telecom companies, should be taken with some caution of course. Vivacell-MTS, for one thing, was too eager to claim it has 80% mobile user market share launching a massive marketing campaign about having 2 million mobile subscribers.

Some time ago @kpearce – one of my mostly-online-friends, asked to fill in a questionnaire about telephone in Soviet times and these days. Looking back at those answers made me realize just how far forward we have moved today. So I decided to publish some of those questions and answers, that you might find interesting, amusing or nostalgic.

Continue reading “Armenia – Telephone today and in Soviet times… UPDATED”

Putin strikes back


For the first time in the history of the World Economic Forum in Davos a Russian politician – Prime Minister Vladimir Putin delivered the keynote speech. The speech was followed by Panel Discussions.
This question asked by Michael Dell, CEO of PC manufacturing giant Dell, during the Panel Discussions grabbed my attention. Dell asked “how can we, as an IT sector help you broaden the [Russian] economy as you move out of the crisis”, Putin responded – “The trick is we don’t need any help”. “We are not invalids,” he said. “We don’t have limited mental capacity, we are not pensioners.”
Frankly, I quite liked Putin’s response to Michael Dell… I mean – Dell is a struggling IT company, who would benefit greatly from widening its presence in the Russian market. So I guess it was basically a silly question of him to ask – to formulate the question that way.

Beeline on the ground, underground and even 3G!

It seems the days, when I would remember Armentel (now rebranded as Beeline), only with curses and complaints are over. As a very mobile person (many think – too much), I carry two mobile phones with me at all times – this is a reminder of not-so-distant past, when Armentel mobile connection was so bad, that I had to buy a ‘backup’ Viva mobile phone, to make sure I have a working mobile at all times, but also had to keep the Armentel one, because that was the contact number printed on my business-cards, published booklettes and various other promotional materials I had at that point. Continue reading “Beeline on the ground, underground and even 3G!”

Sad statistics of Armenia's internet penetration

According to the latest data on the Armenian Statistical Service website, the population of Armenia is estimated at 3,230,300 people, although the CIA World Factbook states 2,968,586 (July 2008 est.), and the dramatic difference of 261,714 people is huge for a small country like Armenia. At any rate, considering the Armenian Statistical Service to be more up to date, I just came accross this interesting table about internet penitration in Armenia.

YEAR

Users

Population

% Pen.

GDP p.c.*

Usage Source

2000

30,000

3,002,594

0.1 %

US$ 410

ITU

2001

40,000

3,000,164

0.5 %

US$ 500

ITU

2006

161,000

2,950,060

5.5 %

US$ 1,060

ITU

2007

172,800

2,950,060

5.9 %

US$ 1,060

ITU

Naturally, if the population of Armenia is 3,230,300, and not 2,950,060, the percentage of internet penitration would make 5.3 % (not 5.9%). This is a rather sad statistics for a country, which declares IT sector as a priority. For comparison, internet penetration in Azerbaijan is 12.3%, in Georgia – 7.1%, Turkey – 22.5%, Iran – 27.5%. The proud “Silicon Valley” of USSR, that Armenia once boasted to be, is seriously lagging behind, even in the larger world scale, as can be seen from the data by Internet World Stats :World total population = 6,676,12,288, Internet total population = 1,407,724,920. Conclusion – 21.1% of global population is ONLINE!

Scroll to top