After Airtel, Now Aircel to Launch 4G Service Across India

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By Rohit KVN | December 13, 2012 11:19 PM EST

Emerging Indian telecom provider Aircel has set a time frame of minimum six months to launch 4G services in select cities across India. Once it starts the service, Aircel will be the second network carrier after Airtel to provide 4G services.

K. Sankara Narayanan, regional business head, Aircel Ltd, Chennai said, "Aircel had placed the orders for equipment (for 4G service). It was testing the product and service configurations and it will take a 'minimum of six months' to launch 4G services," reported Business Line.

He further said that the company is also focused on another youth-related segment. Aircel is providing Pocket Internet Games services to reach out to the young population.

The latest mobile communication standard 4G/LTE (Long Term Evolution) is already in use in the US. Several months back 4G services were launched in select UK cities as well. The 4G services already function in many countries across the world.

India has lot more catching up to do compared to developed nations. Airtel is currently the only mobile carrier to provide 4G services in select cities across India. 

Narayanan reportedly said that Aircel will focus more on data services as it is seen as the growth engine of the future. He further added that in 'Rest of Tamil Nadu' (ROTN) area it has 1.8 crore subscribers. Out of those subscribers, 26 lakh customers use data services.

During the July-Sept period, Aircel earned Rs. 520 crore in ROTN area. The company also noted that number of subscribers using data services has gone up by 100 percent. 

According to COAI (Cellular Operators Association of India) October 2012 Survey, Aircel is currently placed fifth with 66.79 million subscribers.

Airtel leads the rankings with 186.41 million subscribers, followed by Vodafone with 153.15 million users, Idea with 115.70 million, BSNL with 96.28 customers and Aircel in the fifth spot.

Aircel was recently involved in a court room battle with Airtel and Vodafone for text message service charges. But now the message services have resumed following an interim order from the court, said Sankara Narayanan.

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