AIS: New block to speed up 4G

AIS: New block to speed up 4G

Rise of 15-30% vowed when September ends

Mr Pratthana says the latest bandwidth addition will give AIS the widest bandwidth on the 1800MHz spectrum.
Mr Pratthana says the latest bandwidth addition will give AIS the widest bandwidth on the 1800MHz spectrum.

Largest mobile operator Advanced Info Service (AIS) says the 10 megahertz of bandwidth on the 1800MHz range that it won in Sunday's auction will help boost 4G service speeds by 15-30% after September.

The company's network capacity for customer data provision will also increase by 33% and ensure AIS's leading position in the market, it said.

According to AIS chief consumer business officer Pratthana Leelapanang, the 10MHz of bandwidth for upload and download will increase the existing 30MHz of bandwidth on the 1800MHz to 40MHz, giving AIS the widest bandwidth on the 1800MHz spectrum, with total 120MHz for upload and download after September.

"The 1800MHz band is the most suitable bandwidth to provide efficient 4G service, based on technological standards," he said.

The 120MHz of bandwidth has been cobbled together from various spectrum ranges: 20MHz of bandwidth on the 900MHz spectrum, 40MHz on the 1800MHz spectrum and 60MHz of bandwidth on the 2100MHz spectrum (the first 30MHz under its licence from the NBTC and another 30MHz through TOT's 2100MHz spectrum, under partnership until 2025).

Second-largest provider True Move holds 110MHz of bandwidth: 30MHz on the 850MHz under partnership with CAT Telecom, 20MHz on the 900MHz range, 30MHz on the 1800MHz and 30MHz on the 2100MHz spectrum.

Total Access Communication (DTAC) holds 100MHz of bandwidth: 10MHz on the 1800MHz, plus 30MHz on the 2100MHz range and 60MHz on TOT's 2300MHz under partnership with TOT.

AIS said 4G customers will experience faster data speeds in line with better network capacity from wider bandwidth on the 1800MHz after the Sept 15 expiry of DTAC's concession on the 1800MHz band under CAT Telecom.

On Sunday, the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) held the second-round auction for 1800MHz licences, offering nine blocks containing 10MHz each.

AIS and DTAC were the only bidders.

AIS through its subsidiary Advanced Wireless Network won one block containing 10MHz of bandwidth worth 12.51 billion baht, while DTAC, through DTAC TriNet, won another block for the same price.

As of June 2018, AIS had 40 million subscribers, followed by True Move (28 million) and DTAC (21.6 million). In terms of revenue market share, AIS held 47.2%, followed by True Move (27.8%) and DTAC (25.1%).

AIS successfully posted net mobile subscriber base additions for the second quarter this year for the first time in the past six quarters, implying lower turnover and improving competitiveness.

Prepaid-to-postpaid subscriber migration has been under way at AIS, resulting in a 3% year-on-year increase in average revenue per user for the quarter.

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