Videocon Telecom, the telecom brand of the $4 billion Videocon Group, will be investing over Rs.1,200 crore in the next three years for 4G rollout in 29 cities, a company statement said in New Delhi on Thursday. The service will be rolled out in three circles in UP East, UP West and Bihar, the statement said. “Our strategy now is to take the first mover advantage on data and do what we couldn’t do on voice having missed the bus. This will also give us the distinction of being the first telco to offer 4G LTE FDD services on 1800 MHz in the country,” Arvind Bali, director & chief executive officer, Videocon Telecom said.
“We plan to invest over Rs.1,200 crore in the next 3 years for rollout of 4G services in these 3 circles, and with this, we also plan to prioritise our ISP rollout in these circles to compliment 4G,” he said. The company plans to offer 4G data at 2G or 3G rates to encourage early adoption, and will be offering bundled devices as well. “We will be offering bundled 4G devices including Mifi dongles,” Bali added.
The telco which holds 5Mhz liberalized spectrum in the 1800 Mhz band in the circles plans to utilize the entire spectrum for rollout of 4G LTE services in 29 key cities and offer voice on overlay network in these select cities. In remaining coverage area, the telco shall offer 2G voice on own network.
The company will be rolling out 4G in six cities in the first phase, 12 cities in the second phase and another 11 cities on the third covering the key potential cities across these circles. It is working closely with Deloitte as its consulting partner and Huawei & NSN as its technology partner, who are also Videocon Telecom’s partners in their existing operations.
Talking about the voice market, Bali said: “The voice market is already skimmed, with the incumbents in a dominating position having acquired a sizeable base of stable, loyal and high usage subscribers. Given the market dynamics, it doesn’t make sense for a new telco to compete in the voice domain with ever shrinking margins and high cost.” Among other opportunities Videocon is looking to form intra-circle roaming (ICR) arrangement with other telcos for 4G data, which could come as an added business line for them or/and barter for voice ICR, the statement said. (IANS)