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Pakistan beats India to 5G Internet

5G Internet
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Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has announced that Pakistan will be the first country in South Asia to test 5G services, in its annual report. The report went on to boast that Pakistan will beat the largest Telecom competitor in the region, India, in introducing the fastest available internet technology.

Speaking to an online publication, the research director at an Indian tech advisory firm had predicted that the actual potential of 5G in India can only be realized after 2025.

Pakistan has set its eyes on launching 5G technology by 2020 and preparations have begun to test 5G cellular connectivity, the first of its kind in South Asia, according to the PTA’s annual report for 2017.

Subject to the issuance of policy by the government of Pakistan, the PTA plans to auction more spectrums in 1800 MHz band for NGMS services, cited the PTA report.

The federal cabinet had allowed cellular companies to test 5G technology in Pakistan within the existing regulatory environment without creating a tariff for the consumers. Network and cellular companies are conducting various lab and field tests to equip themselves for the launch.

More than 87% of the population of Pakistan is covered by cellular mobile networks, out of which 70% are covered by 3G services while 30% can access 4G LTE services. The total broadband subscribers including 3G and 4G services have crossed around 49 million in the country till October this year, registering a reasonable growth rate with each passing month.

Read more: 5G technology coming to Pakistan?

As per the latest figures issued by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), of the total number of broadband users, a major contribution had been made with 3G and 4G subscribers by Mobile Phone Operators, which reached 46 million by October 2017.

The number of broadband subscribers in other technologies included DSL 1: 550050, HFC: 51,715, Wimax: 151,330, FTTH: 54,107 and EvDO: 558,740. The tele-density of total broadband has reached 22.6 percent while 3G and 4G tele-density of the total subscriber base crossed 21.6 percent.

Pakistan has set its eyes on launching 5G technology by 2020 and preparations have begun to test 5G cellular connectivity, the first of its kind in South Asia, according to the PTA’s annual report for 2017.

Experts associated with the telecom industry are of the opinion that portable mobile broadband devices like MiFi and Wingles are one of the main reasons of this growth in 3G/4G subscribers and Pakistan may witness a rising trend in the use of various other broadband technologies that have not yet been introduced in Pakistan.

Meanwhile, the country’s largest mobile phone operator, Mobilink has overtaken its competitors as the largest 3G/4G player after official figures were released by PTA. Jazz subscribers base was 13.94 million 3G and 1.56 million 4G till the period mentioned.

A senior official of the company said key to this leading position is consistent investment to further innovate on behalf of subscribers by delivering not just the best 3G/4G and voice network, but also improvements in customer service, and product lines. However, experts attribute this growth to the merger with Warid.

Read more: 4G LTE in Pakistan one of the slowest in the world!

As per the gazette numbers, the 3G subscribers of Zong have now extended to 8.99 million and 4.78 4G users by end of October 2017. The number of Telenor 3G subscribers was 10.64 million and 1.16 million 4G users till the period mentioned above. An increase has also been observed in Ufone’s subscriber base, reaching 5.45 million till October 2017 from 5.3 million 3G users in August 2017.

The country’s largest mobile phone operator, Mobilink has overtaken its competitors as the largest 3G/4G player after official figures were released by PTA.

Consequent to the number growth, Cyber security, personal data and Critical Information Infrastructure (CII) is now also an important issue for Pakistan due to its critical geo-political infrastructure and position. It is also more important now than ever owing to the security state. Taking these factors into consideration, PTA is preparing guidelines for implementation by the telecom licensees.

To engage national and international partisans in the development of an ICT legislation, the PTA has designated the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) to carry out a national survey for measuring the true potential of ICT development in Pakistan. Subject to the issuance of policy by the government of Pakistan, the PTA plans to auction more spectrums in 1800 MHz band for NGMS services, cited the PTA report.


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