Telecom provider Telenor confirmed to MediaNama that it is looking to launch 4G services across six circles it operates in. Telenor provided the following statement:
“Telenor India is piloting 4G services in Varanasi. Based on the encouraging results of the pilot, we are planning to launch 4G services in 6-8 cities across our six circles in the next few months. As part of a modernization plan to make its network future ready, Telenor is deploying Lean GSM to extract higher spectral and energy efficiencies, and deliver better quality voice and data services. Telenor has swapped 8000 sites with state-of-the-equipment and will be using narrow band LTE to launch 4G services across selected cities.”
Telenor provides mobile services in UP (West), UP (East), Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Gujarat circles. The company has a permit to operate in Assam but is yet to start its services there.
A report from the Press Trust of India says that Telenor will be 4G ready by the fiscal end and has awarded a Rs 1240 crore contract to Chinese telecom equipment firm Huawei for modernising all its 25,000 mobile base station in the six telecom circles.
Telenor had begun offering 4G services in Varanasi in March 2016. The service was provided over a narrow band and the company said it would extend the service to Andhra Pardesh and Telangana.
Telenor reported that its active internet subscriber base stood at 26.3% of its connections for the quarter ended December 31, 2015 (Q4 2015). The company reported a total connection base of 42.6 million for the quarter, translating to an internet subscriber base on 11.07 million.
Other developments in 4G
– Last week, Airtel bought 20 Mhz of the 2,300 band spectrum from Aircel for Rs 3,500 crore, The deal will allow Airtel to offer 4G services in the eight circles of Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Jammu and Kashmir, West Bengal, Assam, the North East, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha.
– In February, Vodafone India completed first phase 4G rollout under the 1800 MHz band in Delhi NCR cities, Bangalore and Kolkata. It had also rolled out in Kerala circle Kochi in Dec ‘15 & Kozhikode on Jan ‘16.
– In January, RCom entered into a pact with Reliance Jio for 4G services. RCOM and Jio have signed agreements in spectrum allotment in 800MHz band across 9 Circles from RCOM to Reliance Jio. The companies also agreed to share spectrum in 800MHz band across 17 Circles.
– In December, last year Idea launched its 4G services in 5 south Indian states: Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Telangana and Tamil Nadu.
– The same month, Reliance Jio launched its 4G services for employees when it said it would launch its 4G offerings commercially starting March 2016.