MANILA, Philippines–The level of software piracy in the Philippines remains at 69 percent in 2008 but revenue losses increased to $202 million, according to a recent global report by the Business Software Alliance (BSA).
Revenue losses from software piracy in 2007 were at $147 million, BSA said.
The losses in 2008 were largely due to the increase in number of new computers sold in the country, as well as falling exchange rate of the dollar against the Philippine peso, it said.
In its global software piracy report for 2008, BSA reported losses of $53 billion versus $48 billion in 2007.
In a teleconference with local media, BSA Asia Pacific Vice President and Regional Director Jeffrey Hardee said the majority of software piracy cases in the Philippines were from business organizations that have failed to comply with anti-piracy and intellectual property laws after they were found using unlicensed software.
He said the proliferation of pirated software installed in “white boxes” or non-branded computers have also contributed to the increase in revenue losses in the Philippines.
Hardee noted that downloading of pirated software from the Internet was still less than one percent of the total software piracy rate in the Philippines. But this is expected to grow faster as cheaper broadband services become available.
The BSA executive, however, pointed out that the growing usage of laptops and “netbook” computers was helping drive down piracy.
Many of these devices now come with pre-installed with operating systems, thus removing the need to install illegal versions of applications, he said.
Hardee said that netbook and laptop shipments in the Philippines were 16 percent of the total PC shipments in 2008.
BSA Philippines Consultant Bienvenido Marquez III said government raids against suspected users of pirated software and educational efforts led by both BSA and the Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT) have proven effective. But the growth of the PC business was overtaken by piracy among users, he said.
He stressed the need for the Philippine government to strengthen implementation of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s Internet Treaties, which the Philippines is a signatory.
“There should be more efforts to educate the public about the effects of piracy not just in the software industry but also in the economy of the country,” Marquez said.
The 2008 global piracy report, conducted by the BSA and research firm International Data Corporation, showed that piracy in the Asia Pacific region, where the Philippines is included, grew 61 percent in 2008.
In contrast, other regions such as Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, showed a decrease in software piracy rates.
Still, global piracy rate for 2008 is pegged at 41 percent from 38 percent in 2007. This is due to the increase in PC shipments in countries with software piracy rates, BSA said.
SINGAPORE–Software piracy in the Asia-Pacific region continued to grow last year, a study said Tuesday, driven by the rapid growth in computer sales and the availability of bootleg programs online.
The annual survey by the Business Software Alliance (BSA) and industry research firm IDC showed that in 2008, an average of 61 percent of the region’s software were unlicensed.
The figure was up from 59 percent the previous year.
This led legal software vendors to lose S15.26 billion, up 8.3 percent from $14.09 billion the previous year, according to the study.
The global average of unlicensed software worsened to 41 percent in 2008 from 38 percent the previous year, causing losses of almost $53 billion, the study said.
“This increase in the average piracy rate is attributed to the mathematical outcome of more rapid growth of PC (personal computer) markets in economies of higher piracy rates,” said Jeffrey Hardee, BSA’s vice president and regional director.
“Even if piracy were to go down in every high-piracy country, their growing market share for PCs could drive the regional average up.”
Widespread use of the Internet was another factor behind the increase, the study said.
“The availability of pirated software on the Internet, which ironically is facilitated by increasing broadband penetration in the region, is also a major concern,” said Hardee.
Software includes operating systems, systems software like databases and security packages and application software like office packages, finance and tax packages and PC computer games.
Bangladesh was the biggest culprit in the region last year with a piracy rate of 92 percent, followed by Sri Lanka at 90 percent and Pakistan at 86 percent, the study showed.
Japan had the lowest rate, at 21 percent, followed by New Zealand at 22 percent and Australia at 26 percent.
In China, the average piracy rate dropped to 80 percent last year from 82 percent in 2007, the study showed.
The improvement in China is due to “more vigorous enforcement and education,” it said.
BSA is an industry group that works for copyright protection and counts among its members some of the world’s biggest technology companies, including Apple, IBM, Microsoft and Adobe.
WASHINGTON–Software piracy grew last year, accounting for 41 percent of all PC software installed, with losses to companies estimated at $53 billion, the Business Software Alliance said on Tuesday.
Worldwide piracy rates rose from 38 percent of software in business and home computers in 2007 to 41 percent in 2008 despite successes in fighting piracy in China and Russia, according to the study done by market researcher IDC for the BSA.
Global PC software sales grew 14 percent last year to $88 billion.
While there was progress on piracy in some countries, with rates down in roughly half of the countries surveyed and flat in one-third, overall “the dollar figure is actually up,” said Robert Holleyman, president and CEO of the BSA.
Holleyman said that while US piracy was about 20 percent of the total market, the lowest in the world, it was a major problem because more software was sold in the United States than anywhere else.
Holleyman said much of those losses came from small businesses that use unlicensed copies of popular software programs. They might have 50 PCs but only pay for rights to run the software on 25 of those machines. “The US has the highest single dollar loss,” he said.
China’s piracy rate had dropped from 90 percent of all software in 2004 to 80 percent last year while Russia’s piracy rate dropped five percentage points in the past year to 68 percent, the study found.
The progress in China came because the government decided to use only legitimate software, because Internet service providers cooperated in taking pirates off the Internet when asked, and because of other steps, said Holleyman.
The study found seven countries with piracy rates of 90 percent or higher: Georgia, Bangladesh, Armenia, Zimbabwe, Sri Landa, Azerbaijan and Moldova.