The government-owned state enterprise Nepal Telecom (NT) is most likely to reveal its own Social Networking site, called NT Chautari (by unconfirmed sources) on the first week of March 2014. According to the latest updates, Nepal Telecom is preparing for their Unified Communications System (UCS) which can accommodate all, if not major, services of the communication systems for the users. UCS here is commonly tagged social network – like Facebook! The telecom has invested a whopping 900 million Nepali rupees (yes, 90 crore rupees for NTC’s own social network!) to benefit from its own social network.
[highlight color=”#6a2ff1″]Read our coverage on the same story 2 years ago: Chautari – Facebook like Social Networking website from Nepal Telecom.[/highlight]
NTC Quick Facts (2014):
Total customers=1.35 crores
Telephony customers = 97 lakhs
Internet users = 38 lakhs
First heard on December of 2010, Nepal Telecom’s own Facebook like social network Chautari was under construction (!) until the company’s new Managing Director Anoop Ranjan exposed the fact. On early February 2014, Mr Anoop Ranjan disclosed some of the facts about Nepal Telecom’s own social network with the Chinese news agency Xinhua.
Nepal Telecom has not yet named its the social network, but was previously named NT Chautari as you seen in the logo above. However, NTC might come up with some interesting name to promote its name as NT or NTC in the name.
Services / Features of NT Social Network
[pullquote align=”right”]The social network will have more facilities than Facebook and it will be very appropriate for Nepalese users. – Spokesperson, NT[/pullquote]
According to Nepal Telecom the NT Social Network will have all features plus extras than what current users are using in existing social networking, microblogging websites and social apps like Viber, Skype, WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter. Here are some of the services or features that users can expect from Nepal Telecom.
- NT Social network will include all facilities of messaging; group messaging and chat services like of Facebook, WhatsApp and Viber in general
- The application will also have voice messaging service similar to Skype or Viber (but not confirmed about Video calling.)
- Users can make IP calls (this might include Internet Protocol calls without having to use NTC’s app.)
- Users can blog or microblog with text, status, pictures and videos, similar to Tumblr and Twitter.
- Send free SMS to users of the NT Social site, and to limited to non-users but within the same network.
Why is NTC’s own Social Network needed?
Nepal Telecom is the largest telecommunications and Internet Service Provider (ISP) in terms of volume of Internet users and wide options of service delivery in Nepal (~NTA, Ncell outnumbers mobile service but not cellular data subscribers.) Not clear enough but Nepal Telecom might want to have its own Social Network for many reasons to address Internet and connectivity issues in Nepal. Lets summarize some of them here:
- Nepal Telecom’s social network is targeting 1 million (10 lakhs) users initially – expansive and supportive to 1 crore users enough to cover Nepal’s Internet penetration rate for next few more years. Tendency to bring in growing number of users to the in-state usage. Do note that NTC has 38 lakh Internet users of themselves, and the Internet penetration rate is currently at 28.63%, does this imply that NTC is not sure that it can attract and bundle all of its Internet subscribers to it’s very ambitious Social Network?
- The server of the social site is most likely (or should obviously) reside in NTC premises in order to handle and provide bandwidth consumption as the target are Nepalese living inside the country. Since Facebook has been the top most visited website in Nepal for many years now, majority of Nepal’s internet bandwidth is gone for Facebook. NT might address this issue but with features that users will love most than Facebook itself.
- What else? Bandwidth means money sent abroad for its purchase. Obviously NTC might make more money, save some for the country. More to see.
[highlight color=”#6a2ff1″]Don’t forget to read our coverage on the same story 2 years ago, here: Chautari – Facebook like Social Networking website from Nepal Telecom.[/highlight]
Think NTC is going to launch Nepal’s first Social Networking site, think again. There many many Nepali and Nepal-based social networking and even dating websites. Here is the list and our review: Nepalese social networking websites – review.