MyTel anticipating 5G rollout next year if granted licence

Telecom International Myanmar Co Ltd (MyTel), a joint venture between Myanmar and Vietnam launched in June last year, can roll out 5G services next year if the spectrum license is granted.

The company made a test-run of the 5G service on July 31 where a speed of 1.6 Gpbs was recorded compared to the 4G network’s 150 Mbps.

“5G is the future. 2G and 3G will be gone after 2020. If the Posts and Telecommunications Department grants the spectrum licenses next year, then the road to 5G is not too far away,” MyTel chief external relations officer U Zaw Min Oo said.

MyTel will be partnering Huawei for the 5G network services. The service will be available in urban areas first before being offered in rural areas. A crucial factor would be government support for the implementation of the 5G spectrum roadmap including mobile phones and infrastructure that can support the service. The company has invested K1.2 billion in infrastructure with 15 million subscribers.

“If the government implements the roadmap spectrum without delays, then we’ll see 5G services launching next year,” U Zaw Min Oo said.

The 5G network not only offers 100 Mbps speed for the internet, but will mean that artificial intelligence, virtual reality, Internet of Things and smart cities will also become a reality. There would be benefits to various industries and sectors of the economy.

Post and Telecommunications Department deputy director-general U Myo Swe said the roadmap’s preparations will be published soon. “The newly created Spectrum Roadmap will be published in 2019 after it’s checked. Myanmar National Broadband White Paper 2019 will be published with the aid of other partner companies,” he said.

The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology said 5G will replace 4G/4.5G under the Myanmar National Broadband White Paper 2019, Spectrum Roadmap 2019, network coverage, infrastructure, fibers and citizens, households, and much other broadband support.

The Posts and Telecommunications Department earlier this year issued a fine of nearly US$200,000 (K300 million) for violating the Pricing and Tariff Regulatory Framework. It also issued two warnings to Mytel under Telecommunication Law section 57(a) after the operator failed to abide by one of the licencing rules and provide accurate site data when calculating coverage.

Of Viettel’s 10 international markets, Myanmar is the largest and has the highest potential for growth. Earlier this year, Lê Đăng Dũng, chair of Viettel, said that Myanmar’s telecommunications market was unusual and the country still has growth potential. He rated Myanmar as one of Viettel’s most promising markets.

Mytel is 49pc owned by Viettel, a Vietnamese enterprise wholly owned and operated by Vietnam’s Defence Ministry. Twenty-eight percent of Mytel’s shares are owned by Star High, a subsidiary of the Myanmar Economic Corp, a conglomerate owned by Tatmadaw (military). The remaining 23pc belongs to Myanmar National Telecom Holding, a consortium of 11 local companies.

Source: Myanmar Times

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