Southeast Asia-based telecommunications company Singapore Telecommunications, or SingTel (News - Alert), is planning to expand into multimedia as well as information and communications technology. Step one in this goal is the acquisition of high-tech firms worldwide.
"We are interested in investing in startups addressing major trends as well as the rise of social and local networks, mobile advertising and the increased need for systems that use smartphone applications," said Allen Lew, chief executive of SingTel's new Digital Life unit, at the annual High Tech Industry Association conference in Jerusalem.
Acquisitions have already begun as, in March, SingTel purchased Amobee (News - Alert), an Israeli mobile advertising solutions firm, for $321 million. Meanwhile, the company has a venture capital fund of US$162.7 million available to invest in start ups.
The telecommunications provider also set up a new structure earlier this year to raise its presence in content and mobile applications in an attempt to generate revenue from the popularity of smartphones. SingTel also plans to focus on mobile advertising, with targeted offers and coupons.
Outside of telecommunications, one of SingTel's key focuses will be in television services, said Lew. The plan is to deliver more personalized and relevant programming, but with fewer choices, to customers in developed countries after analyzing viewing behavior. In emerging markets such as India and Indonesia where many can't afford TV at home, SingTel plans to deliver TV services via smartphone.
In August, SingTel partnered with EZ-Link to start a mobile payment service for smartphones using Near Field Communication (NFC) in Singapore, allowing consumers to make payments by tapping supported handsets to NFC pay terminals in over 20,000 areas in the area.
Also in August, SingTel-Optus, Acer (News - Alert), Intel and Qualcomm all joined Futuremark's Benchmark Development Program with the aim of creating a new 3DMark gaming benchmark tool for Android tablets and smartphones. The app is planned for release later this year.
Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2012, taking place Oct. 2-5, in Austin, TX. Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.
Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli