Controversy has flared over who exactly will benefit from the rebates for smartphones. What do you think?
Smartphone RM200 Rebate for Youth and RM1,000 Grant for Online Entrepreneurs to Start on 1 January 2013: MCMC
Cyberjaya: 27 December, 2012 — Youths aged 21 to 30 will be able to start applying for the RM200 rebate off selected 3G smartphones from celco nominated registered dealers. Applications for the Youth Communication Package (YCP) (or Pakej Komunikasi Belia (PKB)), under the National Broadband Initiative; can be made by registering online at http://nbi.skmm.gov.my/ starting from 1 January 2013. The scheme is on a first-come-first served basis and will be for the first 1.5 million eligible youths who may claim their smartphones while stocks last.
Whilst the Youth Communication Package is a scheme implemented by the celcos, this initiative, coordinated by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), was announced by the Prime Minister as part of Budget 2013 tabled in September this year to encourage more youths especially those in rural areas to enjoy the nation’s broadband facilities.
Youths who qualify for the RM200 rebate will be able to purchase ‘selected’ 3G smartphones costing up to RM500 from selected dealers and agents appointed by service providers. With the rebate, they are expected to pay no more than RM300 to own a new 3G smartphone.
“The idea is to spread the incentive across to those who do not yet use smartphones. We really want to help those who cannot afford to change phones to upgrade from their old 2G phones to a basic 3G smartphone. Those who can afford phones priced above RM500 are really not in the intended category or target market. Some of those phones can reach prices of over RM2,500 without contract. A RM200 rebate does not even make a dent but if the phone is priced at RM500, a RM200 rebate goes a long way. Again, the target is the lower income group and the youths,” said MCMC Chairman, Dato’ Mohamed Sharil Tarmizi, in refuting speculations that the RM500 price limit was low.
He added, “from studies conducted by MCMC, over 90% of users are in the prepaid segment. Celcos don’t provide smartphone incentives in this segment, they only give mobile phone ‘incentives’ for postpaid contracts.”
Additionally, as to the criticism on the phones out there, there are over 20 models of branded phones which are 3G enabled unlike the allegations made by certain quarters. (Please refer to the following list of smartphones available for this package.)
The participating celcos and mobile virtual network operator (MVNOs) will offer no less than five (5) and perhaps up to 10 or 12 models under the initiative via their dealership outlets. Members of the public should look out for the “Pakej Komunikasi Belia” logo that will be displayed on banners and
buntings at these outlets. They should also check websites of the service providers for the list of smartphones and participating dealership outlets.
Meanwhile, owners of small online businesses between the ages of 18 and 65 will be able to start applying for the Get Malaysian Business Online (GMBO) RM1,000 grant starting on 1 January 2013 also by registering online at http://nbi.skmm.gov.my/. Small online business entrepreneurs who have registered websites for example, .com.my, .my, and fulfilled all the terms and conditions, will receive RM1,000 grant from MCMC.
The money will be credited directly into the successful applicants’ local bank account. It is
expected that up to a maximum of 50,000 eligible entrepreneurs of small
online businesses will apply for the grant.
For more details on these two programmes, Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) are posted online in the MCMC website.
The list (in alphabetical order) of smartphones that will be offered are as
1) Alcatel 993D
2) Alcatel OneTouch Glory 2
3 Alcatel OneTouch Inspire 2
4) The Buzz Phone
5) HTC Wildfire
6) Huawei Ideos X3
7) LG Optimus L3
8) Ninetology Black Pearl II
9) Ninetology Palette
10) Nokia 2730
11) Nokia 7230
12) Nokia Asha 305
13) Nokia Asha 308
14) Nokia Asha 311
15) Nokia C2-03
16) Nokia Lumia 610
17) Samsung Galaxy Chat
18) Samsung Galaxy Mini
19) Samsung Galaxy Pocket
20) Samsung Galaxy Y
21) Sony Xperia Tipo
22) ZTE Acqua
23) ZTE V790
1) The above is as at 26 Dec 2012 and the models list will be updated from time to time in the Service Provider’s website;
2) The brand, model and quantity offered may differ amongst different Service Providers.