2

How and where
to buy gadgets
on a low, low
budget
More and more buyers are turning to secondhand electronic goods as consumers begin to
toy with the latest gadgets. They are looking
for value for money and there’s plenty to be
had. In the city, it’s a thriving trade.
Most of the gadgets could be found in downtown Yangon. Photo: Staff

Tin Yadanar Tun

T

HE growing consumerism is driving
the electronics used goods market in
Myanmar, as more people with little
disposable income are beginning to invest in
recycled consumer durables.
Second-hand goods, ranging from electronic appliances, televisions, washing machines and refrigerators to computers and
mobile accessories, are now in high demand,
according to traders.
People from all walks of life are beginning
to frequent these markets, mostly located
on 33rd and 34th streets, and also along the
Mahabandoola Street.
People who have good knowledge about
electronic devices but cannot afford new
products usually buy these pre-owned items
because prices are almost half the normal
price, says second-hand electronic goods
trader U Min Ko from Pabedan township.
“Customers like them although they
are second-hand because they could be

Japanese or well-known brands and are
more durable than Chinese or Thai products. Prices would also be about 60 percent
cheaper than the new ones,” he said.
The proliferation of electronic devices in
the market is another reason for the rising
demand for used goods, as bargain hunters want to maximise their money buying
branded goods, but at a cheaper price. And,
more people are investing in new electronic
products hitting the marketplace.
Ma Thuzar from Pann Thitsa computer sales
shop in Seik Kan Thar Street says there is a demand for second-hand laptops, although there
would be a difference in price depending on the
guarantee given by the shop owner.
“We sell not only new laptops but also
second-hand items that look new. Some
people who cannot afford to buy a new one
will buy a latest version pre-owned laptop
because most of the used laptops will only
have a defective battery but would be much
cheaper than a new one. Even though they
are pre-owned, we give customers a guaran-

tee of three months to one year,” she said.
A new laptop, even a low model, will cost
about K300,000, while a second-hand unit
will only cost K100,000.
Moreover, there are many who buy used
computer parts from used-goods shops to
replace their own faulty parts, Ma Thuzar
said.
“If computer accessories like the panel,
hard disk, or driver are damaged, buying
from pre-owned sales shops would be 60-70
pc cheaper than buying a new one. The only
thing is you would have some trouble trying
to locate second-hand sales shops and the
specific things that would suit your computer,” she said.
Ko Tun Aung from a pre-owned TV sales
shop in 28th Street says the second-hand
flat TV market is thriving with the Japanese
Sony 32- inch flat TVs selling for about
K120,000 and an over-20-inch flat TV at
about K80,000.
“Second-hand products are mostly from
Japan. They have a high durability as they

are Japanese-made. There are different kinds
of brands and you can choose whatever you
like. Although they are second-hand goods
we give customers a one-year guarantee,”
he said.
Ko Tun Aung says only foreign-made
latest-model used items are in high demand
with only a few opting for old models.
“Customers want only latest-model flat
TVs when they are buying used TVs. There’s
no demand for pre-owned regular TVs that
are widely used locally. Customers buy only
second-hand products from foreign countries. They do not like the second-hands
from locals,” he said.
U Min Ko from Pabedan says, “There is a
high demand for second-hand refrigerators
and air-conditioners during this hot season.
People are buying two-door refrigerators
that are selling for about K150,000.”
In the current buying trend, the secondhand market is complementing mainstream
shopping, but not posing a threat.
Translation by San Layy

3

How to make sure you are safe online
End-users, if they aren’t careful, could
become victims of crafty hackers who
break complex security features to steal
valuable data. Experts urge users to
remain alert and adopt creative ways to
beat cyber threats.
Aung Kyaw Min

A

s we are dominated by the
IT age, it is a fact that almost
all of us have our own online
accounts such as on Google or Facebook.
As millions of us across the globe
are using our own accounts to interact daily with others, store our data
in the Cloud, or surf our favourite
websites, it is needless to say how
vital our online account security
should be.
How do you keep your online account safe?
An online account that you have
signed up for could be compared to a
house that you own and its password

would be the key to that house.
It’s imperative that you do not give
your key to anyone or show around
your house to strangers. If you do
so, it’s probable that based on your
house address, the other person
would be deviously watching your
house and trying to break into it.
There are some situations where
your account identity has to be
shared. If so, it is essential to link
your account with a phone number
or your other accounts.
Here, it is advisable to know how
to keep your online accounts safe.
Two-step verification, recovery mail,
or using a difficult password can give
you more security.
Most online account users have a

misconception that they are keeping
their account completely safe by
using a tricky password. It is not so.
Someone can still indirectly enter
your account, even if it is quite easy.
Two-step verification
If you want to be more secure with
your online account, you should use
the two-step verification method.
Just as you register yourself to be
a citizen at the immigration department, you can register yourself with
online account platforms, like Google
and Facebook, with an advanced
confirmation from them by using
your email and phone number. This
method could to some extent prevent
your account from being hacked by

using your stolen password. This is
quite a high-security system adopted
by international users.
If someone tries to enter your
account, you are informed by a text
message to your registered phone
number to change your password. So,
it would be prudent to register the
phone number you always use.
Besides, new codes would be
simultaneously sent to your Google
mail account as a new email link to
change your password. You then have
to check your account and change
your password. By using this method,
you can prevent your account from
being stolen by others.
The next method is to have alternate
account address as your recovery

Gmail, besides using the two-step
verification method. If you have two
online accounts, you can heighten
your security by linking them and
using a tricky password.
You have to be extra-cautious using names, dates of birth, or simple
passwords that others can guess.
The password should contain letters, numbers, shift key figures, and
symbols.
If your online account is hacked,
you can retrieve it from your recovery
Gmail within a short time. You must
not take a long time to do it, as it
would not be easy to get back your
account once the hacker changes
your account setting and password. 

continued on page 8

4

What’s hot now in tech gadgets
As the younger generation becomes increasingly addicted to the latest digital devices, from smartphones to
cameras, manufacturers are creating even more sophisticated gadgets for the hungry market
Myo Satt

(2) Spigen (Slim Armor)
for Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge

(3) WST (DP633)
This power bank helps during emergencies to charge
low-powered batteries for IT gadgets. As it has 9000mAh
of power storage capabilities, it can fully charge a phone
twice. One distinct feature is that it will not damage
your phone due to overcharging nor will the power bank
will be damaged from overcharging when it is being
recharged. Two phones can be charged simultaneously
as there are two USB ports.

This cover is suitable for the newly released model
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge. Its colour and design
suit both men and women, and because of its
durability users need not worry whether the phone
would be damaged or not. A clip at the back of the
cover enables users
to
slide the phone in and
out horizontally.

Price: K29,500

Price: K23,500

(4) Rock Space (STONE)
This power bank has a power capacity of 10,000mAh.
It also protects batteries from being damaged from
overcharging and is able to fully charge a phone
twice. It can charge two phones at the same time as
it contains a double USB port. It comes with a
one-year guarantee.

(1) Spigen (Crystal Shell)
for iPhone SE/5s/5
Recognised as meeting military standards, the newly
released cover from Spigen is unusually strong. Even
if the phone is dropped, the cover protects it from
being scratched or damaged. An air cushion at the
cover’s corner helps in preventing the phone from
being broken, no matter how hard it drops.

Price: K29,000

Price: K21,000

(6) Jabra Steel
Comparing with their size, the durability of these
earbuds is so high that it is recommended for any
worksite. They are dust and water resistant. Even in a
noisy worksite, they can enable you to hear what the
other person says. The distinct feature of these
in-ear headphones is that, once you download the
Jabra Assist application, you can always check their
battery lifespan and easily find it, if misplaced.

Price: K125,000

Price: K157,000

(7) Transcend (JetFlash 340)
These are OTG-type memory sticks that can be
inserted not only into computers and laptops but also
into mobile phones and tablets as well. With these in
hand, you can transfer data quite speedily between
your computer and phone. The flash drive is of USB
2.0 with an 8MB capacity.

(5) Jabra Rox
These earbuds can be
wireless-linked with
Bluetooth. Everyone would
enjoy their design. The sound quality is excellent
due to the usage of Dolby sound technology. The
control button on the in-ear headphones not only
helps skip or pause the songs you are playing, it can
also manage your calls. As the earbuds protect you
from dust and water, they are suitable while doing
exercises. They are comfortable for the ears, and
users need not remove them when not using them
but could just wear them around the neck, as the
magnets at the tip of the two earbuds stick together.

(8) Fujifilm (Instax Share SP-1)
If you want to print photos from your phone on photo
paper, this device will assist you. It can be used by
linking with Wi-Fi system for both Android and iOS
phones. You need to download the Instax Share
application to connect with this device. With the
downloaded app, you can adjust the size, lighting, and
colour of your photos, and write captions below the
photo images, before printing them. All you need to
buy is photo paper for printing. One Instax mini film
pack contains 20 sheets that cost K14,000. You can
also print photos from Wi-Fi-linked cameras.

Price: K166,000

Price: K7000

(10) Fujifilm (Instax WIDE 300)
This is an instant camera that enables you to print
photos immediately. One difference of this camera
from other Instax cameras is it can produce largesize photos. As a keepsake, you can double the size
of photo paper used for other cameras and take
wide-angle pictures of many friends together. You
can adjust it to be close or far from the subject and
also manage the camera light for brightness and
darkness. You can buy large-size Instax film paper to
use with it for K15,000 per pack of 10 sheets.

Price: K133,000

(13) Dual SIM Cover
for iPhone 6S Plus
Are you one of those who
are not content with using a
single SIM card? This cover
will supplement your needs.
Once you insert two SIM
cards inside the cover, you
can use your phone from
the back of the cover in a
normal way and also insert
a memory card. The phone
included with the cover is
only a Java-level type. You
can charge the cover and
use this phone.

Price: K75,000

(12) Smart Balance Wheel
Included among favourite electronic gadgets for
youngsters is the Smart Balance Wheel. It can be used
as a plaything or for transportation purposes. It has
an eight-inch wheel and charging takes almost three
hours. Once fully charged, Smart Balance Wheel can
be driven up to 8 miles. A unique feature is that it has
a Bluetooth system and speakers, and when linked to
your phone you can listen to songs while riding it. It
comes in three colours – red, blue and yellow.

Price: K280,000

(11) Prolink (PMW 6002)
This wireless optical mouse is the latest Prolink
product. It can control a 10-metre operation range
from a Nano Receiver plugged into your computer. Its
precision scrolling button gives greater accuracy and
ease when scrolling through long documents. A new
battery can last for a maximum of six months.

Price: K10,000

(9) Fujifilm (Mini 90 Neo Classic)
This is Fujifilm’s newly-released Instax film camera. Its smart, classic
design has a new look and is also light in weight. The distinct feature
of this device is that it can choose the type of mode – close, distant,
night or scenery views. With the Double Exposure Mode, you can have
two different images on the same frame, adding a creative expression
to your unique photos. Its photo quality is the best among Instax
cameras. Its battery is rechargeable and a charger is also included. You
have to add Instax mini film on your own. The camera comes in two
colours – brown and black.

Price: K166,000

Available at:
Nos. 1 to 6 – Technoland, 36th Street (between Anawrahta and Mahabandoola Streets), Kyauktada township
Nos. 7 to 11 – KMD, Pansodan Street (middle block), Kyauktada township
Nos. 12 and 13 – Sony Ko Beno, Barr Street (upper block), Kyauktada township

Translation by Emoon

5

Mighty Facebook Mobile phone users happy
There are pros and cons to using the social
media network, and there are already
more than 8 million users in Myanmar

to grab the Telco offers
Mobile operators jostling for bigger market share are rolling out attractive
packages as users spend more time and money on smartphones,
especially the younger generation
Aung Kyaw Nyunt

T
Facebook users have to be prudent enough to know whether information posted
is true or false. Photo: Aung Khant

Aung Kyaw Nyunt

I

T technicians say most internet
users in Myanmar surf primarily
on Facebook, the social media
network, and that its pros and cons
are decided by how it is used.
“I want to compare Facebook to
a painting canvas that has spots of
[different] paint on it. Painters who
constructively use the given paint
will produce beautiful paintings,
while those who destructively use
the paint will produce useless paintings. Likewise, Facebook is a useful
media if used beneficially, while it
will become dangerous if used in a
destructive way. Therefore, the pros
and cons of Facebook are decided by
how one uses it,” mobile technician
U Thet Ko Htun told The Myanmar
Times.
According to program director Ma
Htike Htike Aung of Myanmar ICT for
Development Organization (MIDO),
there were over 8 million Facebook
users in Myanmar as of February
2016.
“The pros and cons of Facebook
are not only decided by the users;
they are also decided by the social
media platform itself. The reason is,
although it is free [use of Facebook],
we are paying with our personal data
[revealing personal information].
We can say that compromising our
personal security would be among
the cons of Facebook,” she said.
The Safe Online Space (SOS)
training, organised by MIDO in 20
locations, teaches digital security,
Facebook social norms, and ways
and means to complain against
those breaking Facebook regulations.
At present, there are some in
Myanmar who effectively use Facebook pages for philanthropic deeds.
“We have been doing philanthropy
via Facebook for more than four
years now. It is quite effective doing
it on Facebook. So far, we have done
over 100 donations. Recently, we
saw a post on Facebook in which a
Myanmar girl working in Singapore
needed K80 million for an operation
of her swollen brain tumour in a Singapore hospital, and we were able to
donate as much as we could. I want
to advise youths to use Facebook
beneficially. I wish they would work
on philanthropic matters,” Nan War
War Maung, a Facebook user for philanthropic purposes and a member of
the Brothers and Sisters Philanthropy

Group, said.
Similarly, small-scale Facebook
shopping sections can be seen posted
more and more on Facebook pages.
Ma Khin Myint Mo, who buys cosmetics via Facebook, said, “It’s good
to get Facebook. Now we have found
commercial trading on it. People can
buy their desired goods by searching
via Facebook and, thereby, it’s useful
for commercial traders.”
Software technician Ko Thet Ko
Aung said Facebook can be beneficial
but using it wrongly can be
dangerous.
“We can find genuine local and
international news reports on Facebook as well as rumours and wrong
information. We need to be prudent
enough to know which news is correct and which is incorrect. We could
click ‘like’ on news organisations’
Facebook pages and get the correct
news. Besides, Facebook should not
be used with the intention of harming others,” he said.
Currently, Facebook pages in
Myanmar are used for both beneficial and meaningless matters.
“Nowadays vulgar words are being
sent to Myanmar girls’ chat boxes
without having any consideration of
them as our sisters. Girls who receive
these messages are seen posting
for help in reporting the accused
account on Facebook. These kinds of
matter should not be allowed. It is an
evil thing to be using vulgar words to
our fellow Myanmar girls instead of
protecting them,” Ma Ingyin Phyu, a
Facebook user, said.
Facebook page is a place where
true as well as false information
spreads fast, she added. “Whatever is
happening, we find out first on Facebook. As we see correct information,
we can also see false reports, such
as instigation for political protests,
spreading fast on Facebook. So,
Facebook users have to be prudent
enough to differentiate right from
wrong.”
Until recently, Facebook was not
widely used in Myanmar as a social
network due to slow internet connection and the public being unfamiliar
with the internet at a time when
the MPT was the sole operator in
Myanmar’s telecommunications sector. With the entry of other operators
in Myanmar, Facebook usage has
surged, which is both good and bad,
as pointed out by its users.  

Translation by Emoon

elecommunication service
providers in Myanmar are
competing against each other
by introducing new promotion plans
and programs to attract consumers.
Similarly, mobile users told The
Myanmar Times that they are hoping
to receive unique and innovative
special promotions and packages
from their mobile network
operators.
Daw Thel Su says, “Currently I
love promotion programs from the
phone companies. Examples are
MPT’s One Hour for Five Minutes
[call for five minutes and you get 55
minutes’ free talk time] package and
Spend Nights with Data plan. I like
the promotion plan in which you get
a bonus of K10,000 when you top up
K10,000 on your phone. If we have
to review our phone companies, I
think they are trying their best to
get the attention of their consumers through interesting promotion
programs.”
Myanma Posts and Telecommunications (MPT) re-introduced their
One Hour for Five Minutes package
in a new format on May 9 and on
the same day Ooredoo introduced
its 4G service in Myanmar. Telenor
has its own popular Super Owl
program.
Another mobile phone user, Ko
Kyaw Kyaw Hmu, said, “This unique
One Hour for Five Minutes is going
to be very popular among its users
and every user is going to buy that
promotion program. This is my favourite program, and MPT is unique
in promoting it.”
Similarly, Ooredoo introduced a

free registration package, K3 for 1MB
program using Facebook, on April
29.
Ko Tun Ko Oo, who uses all three
mobile services, said, “I like Ooredoo’s K3 for 1MB Facebook program
which is really convenient for
Facebook users. Each operator has
their own version of good services.
I use all three SIM cards – MPT’s for
One Hour for Five Minutes package, Telenor’s Super Owl program to
watch YouTube, and Ooredoo’s K3
for 1MB program for Facebook. Each
has their own good points.”
According to a mobile technician, when foreign telecommunication service providers entered the
Myanmar market in 2014, there was
a fierce competition among industry
players.
He said, “After licences were
granted to Ooredoo and Telenor in
February 2014, there was a fierce
competition to expand their network coverage in the whole country.
At that time, the local MPT already
had their network everywhere. Now

that the providers have almost
100 percent coverage domestically,
they are now shifting their focus on
satisfying their customers’ needs
by competitively promoting their
services.”
With strong competition among
service providers, companies are
now giving discounts for some
services.
Currently, MPT is leading the market and has the largest number of
users with over 19 million. Norwaybased Telenor has 15.5 million users,
while Qatar-based Ooredoo has 6.9
million.
Ooredoo’s network covers 82 percent of the country as of the end of
March 2016, with 3800 service towers. It aims to build a total of 4500
towers by year end, according to an
Ooredoo official.
Similarly, Telenor Myanmar issued
a statement on April 28 announcing that over 2000 towers would be
erected by the end of this year to
bolster its coverage. 

Translation by Khant Lin Oo

Users hope to receive unique and innovative promotions from their operators.
Photo: Khin Wyne Phyu Phyu

6

The art and
secrets of
lighting
It can be the difference
between feeling good and
bad. A lighting expert on
how Thailand’s L&E’s Lighting
Application Center in Yangon,
its first model outside of its
home country, can set the
mood in Myanmar.

Food, beverages and even jewellery need specific colours of lighting to look fresh and genuine. Photos: L&E

Clovis Santiago

T

he secret to create a cozy
ambience for your bedroom lies in selecting the
right blend of colours for the lighting. Certainly, it is not an easy task
when there are millions of colours
to choose from.
But warm white is the best
colour to brighten your bedroom,
says an expert from Thailand.
Country manager Weerada
Worawittayanon said there are 16

million colours in lighting but if
all the colours are combined, the
result is white, for which there
are generally three basic categories ­– warm white, cool white and
daylight.
L&E Myanmar Co, Ltd. opened
its Lighting Application Center in
Yangon five months ago, offering
total lighting solutions which
only L&E is capable of providing
so far in Myanmar.
“One challenge is trying to

spread awareness about our
services. Many customers think
we are selling bulbs, fluorescent
lamps and lighting products in our
showrooms. So we have to explain
a lot about the lighting design, LED
technology, materials and services
in this industry,” said Ms Weerada.
“Specific colours of lighting are
required for specific things. Look
at the meat shown here. If we
give general lighting, it does not
look very great. But if we have a

Fuji Xerox has its eye on the prize

Fuji Xerox offers multi-function devices, printers, scanners and production systems. Photos: Aung Htay Hlaing

Clovis Santiago

W

hile its competitors have
been wary of diving into
the emerging Myanmar
market, Fuji Xerox has taken the
lead and intends to stay there. Its
competitors have only set up local
dealerships to sell their products, but
Fuji Xerox has been in business here
since 2013.
Fuji Xerox, together with local
partner Concordia Int Ltd, has a
full-service operation in Myanmar.
Its offices are in Yangon, Nay Pyi Taw
and Mandalay, and it also has a service centre in Thanlyin township. The
service centre targets foreign companies in the Thilawa Special Economic
Zone, a 15-minute motorbike ride
from its location. In addition, Fuji

Xerox’s direct customer service
engineers from Thailand regularly
train counterparts here to cater to a
market which it believes holds great
potential for the brand.
Shinichi Kimura, sales and marketing manager of the brand’s Myanmar office, told The Myanmar Times,
“Our first objective is to become
the number one in market share in
Myanmar. We already have numberone market share in the Asia Pacific
region. We are also contributing to
this country through our corporate
social responsibility [CSR] programs
and working to develop the market
here. We believe Xerox is always a
document company. We support all
issues relating to documents – printing, filing and various processes in
office work.”

The Myanmar office sales manager says the company supports all issues relating to documents.

Mr Kimura said the company is
involved in four segments of the
market in Myanmar. The first is small
printers for individual consumers; the second targets businesses,
local firms and foreign companies;
the third, production printers for
professional users; and the fourth,
solving issues arising in the business
field. Fuji Xerox offers multifunction
devices, printers/scanners, software,
production systems, among other
products.
He said in the past three years,
business has grown gradually and
the company now has five times the
number of employees compared to
when it first opened here. However,
he acknowledged that Fuji Xerox has
branding challenges here. “Foreigners, such as the Japanese, Thais and

Singaporeans, know that we are
number one and would come to us
wherever we may be. But we need
to build more awareness among the
Myanmar businesses, as they do not
know yet that we are the inventor of
the copying machine.”
Xerox was founded in 1938 and
became internationally known as
inventing the copying machine. It
went into partnership with the wellknown Fuji Photo Film Company in
1962, thus becoming Fuji Xerox.
Asked how Fuji Xerox is building
its brand in Myanmar, Mr Kimura
said it is important the Myanmar
office has “direct support from Fuji
Xerox headquarters, while other
competitors have only local dealership services here”. CSR programs
are also a part of its commitment to

Myanmar. “Last year we contributed
mathematics workbooks to be used
at the primary schools in Yangon.
We also donated trash cans in the
Mandalay and Bagan areas in a joint
venture with a Japanese advertisement company and in cooperation
with the local city development
committee.” Ni Ni Khin Zaw, one
of the country’s top vocalists, is a
brand ambassador.
Mr Kimura added that Fuji Xerox
supports programs involving children
as they are the most valuable resource in any country and represent
the future of the country. To sum
it up, he said, “We are here to help
improve work productivity, office
efficiency and materials quality. Last,
but not the least, we want to grow
with Myanmar society.”

7
specific light, the meat becomes as very fresh
as it is. The same applies to other food and
beverages and even for jewellery. For gems,
we need a particular colour of lighting so that
they will look finer or genuine.”
In its first five months of business here, L&E
has secured projects from City Mart’s supermarket, façade lighting of Ocean supercenter
in Shwegonedaing, Yangon’s downtown AYA
Bank building, Union Financial Centre, Denko
Gas Station, and the Golden Palace in Bagan.
Speaking to The Myanmar Times, in a first interview with the media, Ms Weerada said, “As
a public company in Thailand for 24 years,
we are the biggest, in terms of project-based,
giving total solution in lighting services. We
have projects in Thailand’s major supermarkets and department stores.
“We are unique in that we are a fullbased service company and we do our own
manufacturing. We can fulfill the customer’s
requirements from the first stage of product design itself. We call ourselves a ‘total
lighting solution provider’. Our experience
in Thailand shows that our customers are
happy because of the support they have. This
creates trust between L&E and our customers. As a total solution provider, we deliver
things – designing, energy saving, and cost
management.
“We actually started working more than a
decade ago in Myanmar, since the time the
capital of Nay Pyi Taw was built. We were
involved with the hotels and some of the government buildings there. Our management
team decided that we should do something
more than just be a products supplier for
the Myanmar market. Our CEO advised us
that we have to give back something to this
market and, so, here we are.
“As you could see, we are more than a

showroom. We have divided the showroom
into different sections, so that we can educate anyone who is interested in the history of lighting or how to select lighting for
specific businesses. Architecture students,
interior designers, engineers, and anyone
who’s interested in lighting can learn about
our technology. We have long-term plans to
collaborate with the universities here. Right
now, we are coordinating with our customers
and some organisations in setting up small
seminars with them. Each seminar or workshop will last about two hours.”
L&E Myanmar Co, Ltd is its first overseas venture. Ms Weerada said Myanmar’s model would
be copied in Vietnam, where L&E already has a
representative office. Malaysia will be its next
target. As a foreign company, L&E cannot retail
here, therefore its application centre acts like a
coordinator and gives service to customers.
Asked about the whole lighting process,
Ms Weerada said, “Once a customer comes
in with a request, it would take one to two
weeks to work out the proposal and the
budget and another two to four weeks for the
consignment to arrive directly from Bangkok
to the site. We also have local partners here,
overseen by a Thai engineer, if the customer
does not have their own contractor. Before
handing over the project, our designer will
go to the site and make an inspection of the
work being done.”
Always an educator, Ms Weerada emphasised that lighting is important for other reasons, besides commercial purposes, including
for one’s health, mood and emotion. “Lighting
also creates the mood and can also be used
as a therapy. We are working with Bangkok
Hospital in Phuket, where patients entering a specially lit room will feel relaxed and
better.”

L&E showroom is divided into sections for anyone interested in learning about lighting technology.

The showroom has a separate section devoted to the history of lighting.

8

SIM cards — what’s best?
Aung Kyaw Nyunt

May Phyo Mon
User of all three SIM cards
I mostly use the Telenor. Its internet connectivity is very good and
cheap. But the internet line could be
sometimes erratic. I applied for the
Ring Tone service for my Telenor SIM
card. But this service can only provide
Myanmar songs. I think it will be good
if they make English songs available. I
used to have and MPT SIM card when
there was no other. Its internet connectivity is very good, but it costs a
lot. Now I don’t use it any more. Ooredoo connection is the best among the
three SIM cards. But it also costs a lot.
At present, I like Telenor the best. I
also like its Super Owl package, but I
think it should reduce its price.

A

t a time when it’s very
easy to buy a subscriber
identity module (SIM)
card for only K1500, there are now
three phone service providers from
which to choose – Myanma Posts &
Telecommunications (MPT), Telenor
and Ooredoo. Here’s a sample of
what the public thinks about the
advantages and disadvantages of
these providers.
Translation by
Khine Thazin Han and Emoon

IT
&
ELECTRONICS
Staff writers Aung Kyaw Nyunt,

Nay Chi
Telenor SIM card user
Telenor is good for using the internet. I thought of using Oooredoo,
the first time its SIM card came out.
But for Ooredoo, you have to use
specific handsets. So, I began using
Telenor. Telenor is good for calling.
It also doesn’t cost a lot for using
the internet. I also like its Super Owl
package. I’ve heard other SIM cards
cost a lot when using the internet. I
hope internet connection and voice
clarity would be better than now. Having a very good internet connection
is paramount these days, not only for
youths but also for the elderly. I also
hope for more interesting promotions
and packages.

Hteik Tin Aung
Ooredoo SIM card user
I use the Ooredoo SIM card, mostly,
for accessing the internet. It means
I usually buy the Ooredoo internet
package. But Ooredoo line connection
is not good in the surrounding areas
of Kaba Aye Pagoda Road. The connection icon might still be showing that
you are fully connected, but you still
can’t use it. I hope this issue would
be corrected soon. Normal Facebook
users, and not only those who have
bought the internet package, find it
convenient to use Facebook for K3
per megabyte. Moreover, you can call
free to other Ooredoo users and you
have to pay K20 per minute when
calling other SIM card users. Comparing with others, I think Ooredoo’s rate
is cheaper, so I use Ooredoo. Future
Ooredoo internet lines would be gaining speed, as Ooredoo changes to a 4G
service provider.

Kyaw Win Hlaing
MPT SIM card user
I use all three SIM cards as they can
be bought for only K1500 each. But
I prefer using MPT as it can access
the internet anywhere. I also like its
promotion programs. I sometimes use
Telenor and Ooredoo when I wish to
make downloads. MPT should be consistent when providing services. If we
wish to use one of their services, we
have to change over to the Swe Thahar program. Services should be provided to all MPT users whether you
change over to that program or not.
Out of all MPT services, my favourite
is One Hour for Five Minutes (call for
five minutes and get 55 minutes free)
voice package. They are unique in giving out this kind of promotion. They
are also promoting this service now in
a new program format. This is new to
me. Telenor has Super Owl package.
But I prefer using MPT.

identity on websites.
Hackers can also trick users into
thinking that new form of the Gmail
login page or Facebook login page
created by them is the valid one.
Users also need to refrain from logging into unwarranted social media
pages with their own email address
and password.
Lifestyles are changing in accord
with current times. Our own data
and others’ are being shared on social
networks. If you know how to use
them it can be beneficial, and if you
don’t it can become a dangerous
threat to you.
Posting your own photos and
describing your whereabouts on
Facebook would be like reporting
every detail about yourself to those
watching you, causing unnecessary consequences, such as social
problems.
So, it would be advisable to
refrain, as much as we can, from
posting photos or describing every
check-in of your whereabouts. If
you seriously want to share your
activities with your friends all the

time, you should try to work out a
separate policy with your accounts.
Your new policy should be to
avoid, directly or indirectly, linking up with friends of your friends
who you would not be comfortable
with or who you do not know much
about. You can also prevent unnecessary issues by not publicising your
personal data.
Moreover, at a time when online
shopping is becoming very popular,
users make public comments and
also give their address, phone
number and email address for
everyone to see. This habit should
be avoided to be safe from those
watching you. Although this kind
of crime has not yet become prevalent in Myanmar, reports of online
threats and attacks of this nature
are often covered in the international news.
As we have now linked our Facebook and Gmail accounts on our
mobile phones, it would be a great
opportunity for someone to obtain
all our information, should we unexpectedly lose our phones.

If we face this, we should lock our
phones in time. If you are working in an office, always activate the
internet and GPS on your phone so
you can easily prepare the locking system that can lock your lost
phone.
By doing this, you can keep
control of your data and able to find
your phone. One point to note is
that we must avoid using Root and
Jailbreak on our phones. If we don’t,
we may not be able to control our
data and risk losing it to others.
To securely save our own data,
we should use data saving Cloud
services on the internet, such as
Dropbox, iCloud, Google Drive and
PC Cloud.
As online threats and dangers
are becoming more and more
prevalent, social network account
users should try to protect their
own accounts by studying useful
technologies. It’s also advisable to
follow the suggestions of IT experts
and set up the two-step verification
method.

Tin Yadanar Tun, Aung Kyaw Min,
Myo Satt, Chan Mya Htwe, Toe Wai
Aung, Zeyar Lin

Be careful of posting personal details
continued from page 3

Editors Myo Lwin, Hein Min Latt,

But, due to the two-step verification
method you used, this account setting
could only be done by someone who
has a better knowledge than an IT
specialist.
It is important to make your Gmail
account safe because Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram can be
used through Gmail.
Some use Hotmail, Yahoo mail,
Outlook.com and iCloud mail. One
advantage Gmail has is that you can
get Google’s additional services, such
as YouTube, Google Drive, Maps, Play
Music, Hangouts and Playstore.
Hackers may directly attack your
accounts. Or they may send a link by
an email to your account, to which
website you have to enter by your
identity and password. Therefore, it
is important not to open emails that
are not known to you, nor use your
account and password to open new
links or websites.
If you are suspicious of any email
addresses in your inbox, you can
verify them and look for their true

Clovis Santiago

Sub editors P. Vijian, Mya Kay
Khine Soe

Photography Kaung Htet, Aung
Htay Hlaing, Zarni Phyo, Thiri Lu,
Naing Wynn Htoon, Aung Myin Ye
Zaw, Aung Khant, Nyan Zay Htet

Cover Photo
Shutterstock

Art Director Tin Zaw Htway
Layout Designer Khin Zaw

For feedback and enquiries,
please contact
c.santiago@mmtimes.com

Translation by Khine Thazin Han

10

Why LEDs are lighting
up Myanmar

Chan Mya Htwe

T

he demand for light-emitting
diode (LED) advertising
boards is growing rapidly,
largely fuelled by Myanmar’s strong
economic growth.
More advertisers and business
operators are using LED screens as
a powerful advertising tool because
they attract more eyeballs and
effectively convey information to
consumers.
Inroads are being made even
though traditional media like print
(dailies, journals and magazines),
and broadcast platforms (radio and
TV) are still vying for a piece of the
advertising pie.
“Sales are up. These days, advertising companies in Yangon use
LED boards and lights and they use
large embossed wordings. Most have
begun to use LED TV screens. Along
with the development in technology,
TV screens now stream live programs,” says Famous LED’s distribution manager Ma Tharaphy.
There are reasons for the spurt
in the new digital advertising trend,
which is fast replacing the old-fashioned signboards.
Myanmar’s economy is robust, with
its gross domestic product growing
at about 8 percent this year, easily
surpassing even bigger Southeast
Asian economies like Singapore and
Malaysia.
In Yangon, companies are switching to LED lights or LED TV screens to
promote their businesses – from gas
stations to banks to merchandisers and
even to construction firms.

An advantage of an LED board
is that it can be easily installed in
shops – and they are becoming less
expensive.
Ko Wai Lin, owner of Milestone
electronics shop, says LEDs are being
used in designing logos, decorating
artwork frames, gold and jewellery
advertisements, and signboards for
industries.
LED products mainly come from
countries like China, Italy and Japan,
although consumers here prefer
China-made products, according to
electronic goods suppliers. Italian and
Japanese LEDs are of better quality
but their prices could be three times
higher than Chinese products, Ko Wai
Lin said.
Chinese LEDs could be both of
high and low quality, and most local
importers only bring in Chinese products which come with a six-month
warranty, he added.
Prices vary according to brand and
type of product. The cost of a 36-inch
TV screen ranges from K1.8 million to
K3 million, according to Ma Tharaphy.
As the monsoon season is fast approaching, Ko Wai Lin also had useful
tips for those using LED products.
Since LEDs are an electronic item,
it is better to use a circuit-breaker to
avoid electric shocks, he said. “Even
though products are kept in the rain,
there wouldn’t be any problem unless
the cable has some kind of defect.”
He also warned consumers that
if a bulb in an LED TV is damaged,
this could produce a cumulative
effect, and therefore, it should be
repaired quickly.
Translation by Kyawt Darly Lin

Most advertising companies are switching to LED lights or LED TV screens to promote their businesses. Photo: Staff

Security devices
– so much a part
of daily life
Toe Wai Aung

Y

ou have no doubt experienced it before,
passing through the screening device at
the entrance to a crowded space, like a
movie theatre, a supermarket or a hotel. You
would have heard a beeping sound once you
were through that gate. That sound meant you
had passed the security check. That is how a
bomb detector works.
Security technology and systems are
developing at a fast rate. Over a decade ago,
these security devices would not have been
so evident. Now there’s a widespread use of
minuscule security cameras, recorders, and
bomb detectors in Myanmar and across the
globe.
Video surveillance, such as closed-circuit
television (CCTV), is evident in many places
such as famous pagodas, banks, industrial
and office areas, gold shops, car parks, popular
restaurants and companies. You may have also
noticed that, besides CCTV cameras, bomb
detectors and bomb-spotting apparatus are
now widely used.
Security measures were especially put in
place after bombs exploded at five-minute
intervals at three different locations in Yangon
on May 7, 2005. Initially, people were somewhat
annoyed, but once they realised it was for their
safety, they began to welcome them.

CCTV is the most widely used security
device, mostly as a deterrent against crime but
it can also be used to better manage staff. It is
with the former in mind that police have been
advising businesses to install security cameras,
especially during their crime-reduction talks.
A CCTV recording is considered to be
indisputable evidence in court and many
burglary cases involving mobile and gold shops
have been solved in a very short time thanks to
these video recordings.
They protect the shops in another way too.
For instance, Daw Ei Khaing Win of Pyae Phyo
Yadanar gold shop said, “If police brought
along criminals with them to confiscate
whatever they had stolen, the burglars would
just point at any gold shop and say they had
sold the stolen booty to that particular shop.
If not for the CCTV records, the particular
gold shop owner would have to suffer by
repaying the same weight of gold to the
authorities. The gold shop would also become
notorious in the gold business for buying
stolen gold.”
Thanks to CCTV, in early May, police quickly
arrested a woman who stole K17.2 million in
diamonds and jewellery from a handbag of a
patient at Victoria Hospital’s emergency ward.
“It’s easy for police to uncover crimes if
people install security CCTVs at their shops,
buildings and workplaces. In 2015, police solved

CCTVs help police uncover crimes more efficiently. Photo: Kaung Htet

crimes relating to stolen cars, burglaries, and
swapping genuine gold with fake material
through records obtained from CCTV,” said
Police Major Thein Aung.
There are other uses. Last year, surveillance
cameras were installed at various places in
Mandalay Region to help control traffic and as
a crime prevention measure. The Myanmar Fire
Department too has found these cameras to
be very useful in spotting fires early and then,
besides quickly responding, issuing warnings to
the public.
“Installing surveillance cameras can make
your environment safe. It will assist in solving
crimes. Criminals would not dare tackle homes
with cameras set up,” said Ko Zin Ko Tun,
administrative director with CCTV Cameras.
However, U Thein Myint from Lanmadaw
township said, “Some CCTV cameras
installed in our ward do not benefit the
people. There are 11 surveillance cameras
in our street but no action has been taken
against drivers driving in the wrong direction.
There was a case when 400 eggs were stolen
from a trishaw parked at the street corner.
An apartment building stairway lock was

tampered with and a bicycle kept inside
was taken away. They could not solve these
thefts. There often are violations of rules
and regulations in our streets, like reckless
throwing of garbage. In these cases, action
could not be taken against them [the
lawbreakers] according to CCTV records.”
To install a CCTV camera, one would need
a camera line device, a hard disk drive (HDD),
CCTV cable, power cable, DC 12V power
machine, a TV monitor, and a technician who
would provide long-term service.
“The cost of cameras varies depending on
the brand, type, resolution, functions and
other features. A TVL camera costs about
K25,000, an HD CVI camera about K30,000,
an AHD camera around K40,000, and an IP
camera around K60,000. Good-resolution
cameras would cost higher. There are about
seven kinds of camera. The best ones would
be Network IP cameras, HD SDI cameras,
AHD cameras, HD CVI cameras and HD TVI
cameras. As better cameras are in the market,
TVL cameras should not be used in 2016,” Ko
Zin Ko Tun said. 

Translation by San Layy and Khant Lin Oo

11

Branding talks, consumers enticed
Famous brands flooding the electronics market offer consumers great choices to pick their favourites based on
product quality and after-sales service. Branding Talks surveys some popular ones and outlines their attractions.
ZAY yar LinN
SONY
ony brand products, imported
by TMW Enterprise Ltd, are being
introduced together with new
technology every year. This year, Sony
is introducing the new high-technology
TVs.
High-standard TVs that include extra
protection system (EPS) were imported
into the Myanmar market last year and
are proving to be quite popular. EPS
protects from dust, which is the main
culprit for
damage in TV and electrical appliances,
and the system also safeguards from
damage caused by lightning. The builtin surge technology in EPS is able to
withstand sudden and unstable voltage
fluctuations up to 2000 volts. Another
feature of EPS is protecting the internal
circuit board from moisture.
Then, Sony introduced the KDL 32R
324D Model, a 32-inch TV. It’s a latest
high-tech product that not only includes EPS but also utilises a technology
that can be used with a power bank. The
TV has 20,000mAh (milli- ampere-hour)
and can operate for eight hours with a
2.1A output power bank. It has a special
advantage in saving power. The price is

S

K329,000 and comes with a one-year
warranty.
Ko Zwe Yan Bo, sales manager from
TMW Enterprise Ltd, says, “As usual,
Sony TV users can use their products
for a long time without any worries or
care. Although produced in Malaysia,
Sony uses precise Japanese technology
and the quality is guaranteed.” You can
also buy a power bank for just over
K150,000.
For more information, buyers can
contact the Sony hotline at 01-556622.
Sony products are available at shopping
centres and dealership stores, and also
sold at Wai Yan electronic stores.
CHIGO
Myanmar Classic Group Co Ltd is the
sole distributor for imported CHIGO
air conditioners and other cooling appliances in the domestic market since
2006.
Ko Nay Myo Aung, general manager of Myanmar Classic Group, says,
“Although products are made in China,
the compressors inside, the most important part and the easiest to get damaged,
are from well-known Japanese brands
like Toshiba, Mitsubishi and Panasonic.”
Large compressors for air conditioning systems used at supermarkets and
movie theatres are Japanese-made

Sanyo. The entire air conditioner was
created with Japanese technology.
Although produced in China, users can
have the same satisfaction similar to
Japanese products, Ko Nay Myo Aung
said.
Prices range from over K250,000 and
it varies depending on the appliances’
horsepower and usage.
The air-conditioners include microprocessor control, so an error code
appears on the digital display when
some part is faulty and this helps to fix
defects rather quickly. Also, because of
the auto restart system, the machines
would restart automatically when the
electricity is on again after an irregular
power cut-off.
“I want to say to our dealers that our
brand is trustworthy, is of good quality,
and sells at a reasonable price. Users
can trust the brand since it utilises the
best technology. We give guarantee, and
we are planning to open our service
centres in every city,” Ko Nay Myo Aung
said.
Mitsubishi
Ko Kyaw Moe Zaw, deputy manager
from Peace Myanmar Electronic Co
Ltd, said prices of air conditioners,
refrigerators, and other electronic products made by Mitsubishi Electric and

imported by the company are higher
compared to other brands.
But Mitsubishi still remains the
market leader for the past 20 years now,
thanks to consumers who like goodquality Japanese products.
“We entered the market 20 years
ago and as we have a lot of experience
in installing our appliances, we don’t
see any human error cropping up.
Consumers are also satisfied and highly
recommend Mitsubishi as the best
brand,” he says.
Peace Myanmar Electric is importing various models of air conditioners
which can be used in movie theatres
and shopping centres. Air conditioners with low horsepower, to be used
at homes, are produced in Thailand,
whereas machines with high horsepower are manufactured in Japan. Ko
Kyaw Moe Zaw says it doesn’t matter
where they are produced, because all
of them have standards that meet
Mitsubishi Electric’s.
Although air conditioners using
R410A gas are imported for longterm convenience, some low-cost air
conditioners use R22 gas as the market
competition is getting stronger this year.
A PME guarantee card is included
when buying Mitsubishi Electric air
conditioners from Peace Myanmar

Electric. These units also have the Mr
Slim brand on them. Prices start from
K400,000 and it ranges depending on the
technology and horsepower.
LG
LG is a popular Korean brand that is
penetrating the local market. TMW
Enterprise Ltd partnered with LG
Electronics and started distributing the
products in Myanmar since 2003. Products have a good reputation regarding
quality as they are produced in South
Korea.
LG products include LED TVs, home
theatre systems, DVD players, 3D Blue
Ray players, refrigerators, washing
machines and microwaves.
OLED TVs, LG Twin Wash machines
and four-door refrigerators are LG’s
well-known products.
All LG products are given a oneyear guarantee and compressors of
refrigerators and air-conditioners
come with five to 10 years’ guarantee period. LG is fast expanding and
its showrooms are being opened in
Yangon, Mandalay and Nay Pyi Taw
through local sales representatives.
Outlets are also opened in Pathein,
Mawlamyine, Nyaunglaybin and
Pyinmana townships.

Translation by Khant Lin Oo