What's a QALA?

In the face of increasing telecomms deregulation across the Asia-Pacific region, startup telco services provider QALA - launched in Australia in October last year - has previewed the first of its services.

Sam Rahme, director strategic development at QALA, said the services will be on offer before the end of the quarter to business and residential customers in Australia, Singapore and Hong Kong.

He said initial service offerings include enhanced voice, data, broadband Internet, wireless Ethernet, data centre facilities and a series of value-added services tailored for the enterprise market.

Forthcoming solutions will meet the increasing demand for rich, up-to-date content, entertainment and state-of-the-art applications.

"Beyond offering customers high-speed pipe (connection) to the Internet, or to other offices, we can offer virtual private networks (VPN) and firewall services," he said.

After obtaining its Australian telecommunication carrier licences on Christmas Eve last year, and also in Singapore, QALA is leveraging existing wholesale agreements with each country's operators.

Established by leading technology and venture capital firms, including Walden International, Creative Technology and Vertex Management, QALA is building its own regional telecommunications network using next-generation technologies in areas where it is unable to cost-effectively lease network elements from local operators. Rahme added that QALA has no plans to build a mobile network.

In Australia, 20 selected enterprise users from a cross section of industries will be testing QALA's broadband Internet access using ADSL technology, running up to 4Mb/s downstream.

Based on users' feedback, QALA will fine-tune its network before the product is offered generally, a QALA official said.

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