MTNL to test launch 3G services this month;commercial rollout by Dec

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New Delhi, Sept 11 (UNI) State-owned telecom operator Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd (MTNL) today said it will testlaunch its third generation or 3G services by the end of this month in the city while the commercial launch will be completed by December.

''MTNL will launch the first ever third Generation (3G) mobile services in the country on test basis in Delhi by the end of the current month,'' an official statement said.

The trial network will be in and around the Capital's Connaught Place area, it added.

Indoor trial of the 3G services in Delhi has already been completed.

MTNL has already got ready the core equipment for the purpose and is presently mobilising the necessary radio equipment. It will make its 3G services available in Mumbai by early next year.

Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) and MTNL were given a headstart over their private sector rivals by the government as they were allotted frequency spectrum for 3G telephony without having to participate in the formal bidding process.

The two companies, however, will have to pay the government amounts equal to the highest qualified bidder among the private players.

MTNL plans to provide 3G services by installing 3G GSM core capacity of 7,50,000 lines each in Delhi and Mumbai. These lines are currently being installed.

It also plans to expand its GSM capacity in Delhi and Mumbai by two million each including 3G capacity.

3G services are high-end mobile value added services that allow real-time transactions, video streaming, voice and data services.

If it catches on, it could be a big revenue booster for telecom companies.


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