Posts filed under ‘Digitel’
Venezuelan telecoms regulator Conatel has awarded a concession to GSM mobile operator Digitel for 10MHz of radio spectrum in the 900MHz frequency band, local press reported, quoted by BNamericas. The spectrum was originally promised last May, and cost the country’s third largest cellco over USD26 million, according to the report. Digitel has revealed plans to roll out 3G UMTS services by the end of this quarter. Via the new bandwidth allocation Digitel will be able to expand its services in several states including Amazonas, Anzoategui, Apure, Barinas, Delta Amacuro, Lara, Merida, Monagas, Nueva Esparta, Portuguesa, Sucre, Tachira, Trujillo and Zulia. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, both of Digitel’s larger rivals Movistar and Movilnet were awarded additional 30MHz spectrum blocks in the 1900MHz band in October 2007, in an auction in which Digitel was left empty handed. In June 2004 Digitel was awarded 10MHz of spectrum in the 900MHz range to alleviate problems of network saturation; in return the operator handed back trunking spectrum in the 800MHz range to Conatel.
Venezuelan GSM mobile operator Digitel expects to announce the commercial launch of 3G services by the end of the first quarter of this year, reports BNamericas, quoting its commercial vice president Luis Perez, who was speaking to local press. The VP also said that the cellco expected to add 1.5 million new mobile lines during 2009 to reach a total of around 7.5 million, and expected the launch of 3G to play a significant part in achieving this aim. Subscribers in greater Caracas alone are expected to total 2.8 million by year-end, with a total of 1.3 million customers in the Centro region and a further one million in the Centro Llanos region also predicted. According to AIKresearh’s database, Venezuela’s largest cellco by subscribers, state-run Movilnet, has tentatively scheduled the rollout of 3G UMTS services for late 2009, following its limited rollout of a GSM-based network in December 2008, whilst second-place operator Movistar Venezuela, owned by Spain’s Telefonica, launched 3G/3.5G W-CDMA/HSDPA services earlier in the same month. Both Movilnet and Movistar have reported high levels of demand for their 3G EV-DO-based data/internet services, both of which were launched in 2005.