A new chapter of “digital Bangladesh” began through the introduction of fourth-generation (4G) mobile internet in the country on Monday.
Mobile phone operators started offering the fastest internet services immediately after receiving the 4G/LTE licence in the evening from the telecom regulator at a ceremony, reports BSS.
Posts, telecommunications and information technology minister Mustafa Jabbar handed over the licenses to state-owned Teletalk, Banglalink, Grameenphone and Robi.
Private operators – Grameenphone, Robi, and Banglalink – started offering the mobile broadband to their customers in the capital with some other major cities immediately. However, Teletalk may take a few days to launch the 4G service.
Prime minister’s ICT adviser Sajeeb Wazed Joy greeted the mobile phone operators on the auspicious occasion by sending a message.
Soon after getting the licence, market leader Grameenphone’s chief executive officer Michael Foley announced the launch of 4G service through facebook live in selected areas of Dhaka city and Chittagong, marking the beginning of its nationwide rollout of 4G services.
“Indeed this is a proud moment for us all in Bangladesh and a big milestone to the realization of Digital Bangladesh,” said Foley after the launch.
Robi and Banglalink also launched 4G services in some parts of the country as well from the event. Managing Director and CEO of Robi Mahtab Uddin Ahmed said they have covered 179 sites in different cities with the fastest internet service.
“4G will be available in the shortest possible time although eco-system is not ready for it set,” he said. Robi announced 4G service will be available in all the district headquarters from today.
“This is a great day for us as we step into a new era of digital connectivity,” said Erik Aas, CEO of Banglalink after the launch of the service. The third largest operator announced the launch of 4G services in Dhaka, Chittagong, Khulna, and Sylhet covering over 200 sites.
After launching the 4G service, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) chairman Shahjahan Mahmood said they will enact a directive on quality of service guideline where minimum speed for this service will be declared as 7 Mbps and it will go for tough on ensuring quality.
Mustafa Jabbar said mobile phone will be centre of providing government’s service which was adopted during the formulation of digital Bangladesh campaign, and the move gets momentum through the launching of 4G.
For enjoying this service customers mobile gadget needs to be 4G enabled and before that they also need to replace their SIM with a 4G enabled one. However iPhone users may have to wait for some days to enjoy the service, as Apple is yet to make “carrier setting update” for their device for Bangladesh.
Earlier, before launching this service BTRC has arranged an auction where Grameenphone and Banglalink bought spectrum while Robi and Teletalk have decided to launch this fastest data service using their existing spectrum.