Mrs Tan Ching Yee, Chief Executive Officer Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore Closing Speech - Wireless Java Jam 2003/2004, Victoria Concert Hall

Mrs Tan Ching Yee, Chief Executive Officer
Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore
Closing Speech - Wireless Java Jam 2003/2004, Victoria Concert Hall
Singapore, 8 January 2004

Good afternoon,
Mr Wong Heng Chew, Managing Director, SUN Microsystems Pte Ltd
Mr Lee Kong Hung, Centre Manager, Java Wireless Competency Centre
Dr Lim Khiang Wee, Director, Science & Engineering Research Council,
Distinguished guests,
Java Jammers,
Ladies & Gentlemen,


1. I know that you are all anxious to find out who the winners are and I am standing between you and the results. Hence I promise to keep my speech short.

2. Last year, I ended my speech with the hope of seeing some of the participants' names in lights. This has indeed happened! The three members of the NTU team who won the "Best Idea & Audience Choice for Best Wireless Applications" have proceeded to set up with some investors, not one, but two companies, namely - iMfinity Pte Ltd and Snazza Pte Ltd. They are in fact currently commercialising their winning application, and making their foray into the business world. See this recent Computer Times report for yourselves!

3. Other winners of last year's competition have also continued to pursue their passion in the working world. The two students from the Nanyang Polytechnic team who won the Best User Interface award have found employment with Orange Gum. This company is a regional mobile content provider and aggregator with offices in Shanghai, Taipei and Tokyo. The two winners are currently part of the content creation team which develops Java games and applications. They are certainly putting their skills to good use.

4. IDA supports activities such as Wireless Java Jam because capability development is an essential component of the Wired with Wireless Programme. While individuals and small teams cannot hope to design and build multi-million dollar wafer fabs, they can certainly be part of the vibrant community of content and applications developers for the wireless industry. This is one area where young people can plant the seeds of entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation.

Mobile Clubs - Seeding the Future of Wireless in Singapore

5. To sow these seeds of creativity and innovation even more systematically, IDA is working with schools and the wireless industry to set up "Mobile Clubs". Members of these Mobile Clubs will have the opportunities to learn about and play with wireless technologies.

6. Targeted primarily at secondary schools and junior colleges, these Mobile Clubs will be run by the school as part of its co-curricular activities. In collaboration with a company sponsor or a group of sponsors1, the school will provide the students with training in wireless technologies, end user devices for testing and software development kits.

7. Through such clubs, we hope that students will not only be equipped with the hard technical skills, but will also be exposed to softer issues in the wireless industry such as an understanding of intellectual property rights in the mobile content space. The industry partner will be able to tap on the creativity of our youths and gain an understanding of mobile usage among our youth population.

8. The first Mobile Club - a collaboration between Orange Gum and Victoria Junior College - is well underway. In the past two months, Orange Gum has been working with Victoria Junior College to establish a Mobile Club under the ambit of the VJC Computer Club. Through the VJC Mobile Club, students have not only designed their own VJC Mobile Club logo for the phone, they are also uploading their own creative work for their fellow students on a wireless platform hosted by Orange Gum. In addition, one VJC student was on attachment during the December school holidays to Orange Gum and was even involved in an industry project.

9. This is a good start for the Mobile Clubs. Besides Orange Gum, another company, Elchemi Education is also in the midst of discussions with a few schools to set up such clubs. IDA intends to facilitate the set-up of 10 Mobile Clubs by the end of this year. Interested schools may refer to the IDA website for a list of industry sponsors that have expressed interest in this programme.

Expanding Our Mobile Space - Level 8 Mobile Number

10. Our belief in the potential of wireless developments in Singapore and in the Asia Pacific is not unfounded. Mobile penetration rates are either high - in Hong Kong, Korea, Singapore and Taiwan, or growing very fast - in China, India, Thailand. IDC forecasts that the number of mobile subscribers in the Asia Pacific will grow from 421 million in 2003 to 683 million in 20072.

11. In Singapore, mobile penetration has grown so fast in the last 3 years, from 54% in April 2000 to 82.6% in November 2003 that we are fast running out of numbers. With new services, like wireless email access, multimedia messaging, even video telephony coming our way, we can expect our existing pool of mobile numbers to run dry. So, IDA will be releasing to operators new numbers, beginning with "8" by end-March 2004. Co-incidentally, today is also the 8th of January and with Chinese New Year round the corner, "8" is definitely an auspicious start for us.

12. With a good base of mobile users, Singapore is undoubtedly an excellent place to test bed innovative wireless applications, while you keep the bigger market beyond Singapore in sight. But the critical success factors will still have to be your good ideas, and how quickly you are able to bring them to fruition.


13. Before I end, I would like to say a big "Thank You" to the organisers, Java Wireless Competency Centre and Sun Microsystems, for putting together another successful Wireless Java Jam competition. This is also made possible with the tremendous support given by the schools and teachers to encourage their students to participate in this event.

14. This year's competition is also bigger. The organising committee received a total of 97 submissions, over 40% increase from last year's 69 submissions3. In addition to IHL students, we also have participants from secondary schools.

15. In conclusion, I would like to repeat my wish made last year - that you too will see your names in lights.

16. All the best and thank you!


1 A company sponsor or a group of sponsors can come together to work with the school in providing the necessary wireless training such as the creation of picture logos and ring tones. More advanced students may even be given an introduction to wireless programming such as Wireless Access Protocol (WAP) and Java 2 Platform Micro Edition (J2ME) to program their own games and applications, and maybe even set up their own school Wireless sites.

2 "Asia/Pacific Wireless Tracker Services, 1H03" published in Dec 2003.

3 WJJ 2002 attracted a total of 164 students from 4 local polytechnics and 2 universities, with a total of 69 Java wireless applications being developed.

Last updated on: 13 Mar 2023