In line with increasing demands from customers, Celcom today has announced that it will accelerate the expansion of its LTE network throughout the country. This will be done with the help from its two long-time network infrastructure partners, Ericsson and Huawei.
According to the telco’s Chief of Operations, Technology, Digital & Enabler Officer, Ramanathan Sathiamutty, technologies from both companies will enable Celcom to operate in a more efficient manner as the telco is able to rely on less sites while still able to provide wide network coverage for its customers.
Not only that, Celcom also aims to have the best network in Malaysia within six months’ time through the expansion which will also include the deployment of LTE Advanced (LTE-A) and Voice over LTE (VoLTE). In fact, Rama has pointed out that Celcom has just completed VoLTE test in Klang Valley recently although he didn’t reveal any specific consumer launch date for both features.
Clearly, the expansion is a major effort by the telco to transform itself into a strong data-oriented player in the industry. It certainly comes at a huge cost as Celcom has allocated RM 1.8 billion to RM 2.2 billion of capital expenditure for network deployment purposes over the next five years.
Furthermore, the expansion will apparently allow Celcom to gear up for the upcoming 5G technology as well. As the new technology is expected to be ready for commercial usage starting from 2020 onwards according to Ericsson and Huawei, Celcom’s timing is rather on point.