Mobile Application Development
The Commission, through the use of the Universal Service Fund established new part-time programs at the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Community College, one of which was Mobile Application Development. Currently, persons who wish to learn about mobile application development can apply to the NTRC for funding to have such short courses done on Coursera online platform.
Additionally, in 2013, the Commission launched its first annual Ideas and Innovations Competition which seeks to encourage students to develop applications or innovative targeting the public sector. Students are given incentives of cash prizes upto EC$5,000.00 along with other prizes. Click here for more information.
Mobile Broadband Services
Prior to 2014 in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Mobile Service providers offered limited mobile data services through their second generation (2G) Enhanced Data rates for GSM Evolution (EDGE) network. They have since upgraded their networks to use fourth generation (4G) High Speed Packet Access plus (HSPA+) technology enabling their subscribers to attain higher download speeds on smartphones and other data-enabled devices. High speed mobile data services enable customers to get faster access to games, video and mobile applications.
LIME Launches Next Generation Network in St. Vincent & The Grenadines
On October 10th, 2010 St Vincent and the Grenadines became the first sovereign nation in the world to be Next Generation Network (NGN)-enabled, evolving from a conventional circuit-switched telecommunications network to a total “next-generation” network, installed by LIME, the Caribbean’s leading telecoms company.
One of the most significant benefits of the Next Generation Network is that St. Vincent and the Grenadines now enjoys Universal Broadband access, as every fixed line customer in the country is able to self-activate Broadband in only a few minutes.
With the new NGN network, any fixed line customer in St. Vincent and the Grenadines can, in a few minutes, self-install Broadband service. The NGN with full convergence available to all can accommodate over 25,000 customers. Based on the Internet Protocol (IP) backbone, The Next Generation Network infrastructure is a convergence of Voice and Data, transported over fibre Optics and Microwave, and include upgrades to existing copper lines to deliver broadband Voice over IP (VoIP), Broadband Data and the ability to provide IP television (IPTV) to every fixed line customer.
Karib Cable Launches Digital Cable Service
On June 7th, 2010 local cable, internet and landline provider Karib Cable launched its Digital Television (DTV) services at ‘Flow’ on James Street, Kingstown.
The introduction of DTV in St. Vincent now gives cable customers, apart from better picture quality, over 116 channels to choose from and ten free radio stations.
Explaining DTV, Country Manager at Karib Cable Ian Mulhern said, “Digital Television provides improved picture quality, better sound and more TV and radio channels as well as enhanced information services such as onscreen programme guides and high definition TV”.
He said that persons with a basic/premium/choice package will get 67 channels and 10 free radio stations for EC$89.99. One of the new channels is a local based channel called the Faith Broadcasting Network while HOT 97.1 FM has a signed on to be broadcasted over the DTV set-up.
Apart from the basic package, there are eight additional packages that can be paid for separately. These separate packages are the Sports Package, Movie Package, Entertainment Package, Family Package, International Package and the Adult Package. There is also a Pay Per View Package. All of these packages cost an additional EC$25 each except for the Adult package which will run a customer EC$35.
The DTV Services cannot work without a box. Customers are asked to go to Karib Cable’s offices at Frenches Gate and take along a form of ID to collect their boxes. Additional boxes must be paid for.
Speaking about the future, Mulherm said that this first box is the first evolution of the new improved devices. He added that other boxes slated to be released in the future will turn your TV into a computer connected to the world-wide-web with the ability to access websites, download content and send emails. He added that soon, High Definition Television (HDTV) will also be an option, along with the possibility of having video on demand and internet protocol television which allows for internet channels being downloaded to your TV for a cost.