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4G services to first be available in densely populated areas — Zain Jordan

By Mohammad Ghazal - Apr 21,2014 - Last updated at Apr 21,2014

AMMAN — Zain Jordan will invest around JD315 million this year to enhance its third generation (3G) services and introduce fourth generation (4G) services in the Kingdom, Ahmad Hanandeh, its chief executive officer, said Monday.

The company has received final approval from the government to acquire necessary frequencies to introduce 4G services, which enables data transfer at about 150 megabits per second (mbps), which is almost four times more than current 42 (mbps) speed enabled by 3G, Hanandeh told reporters.

He said 4G services will be launched in the last quarter of this year and will first be available in densely populated areas and major cities and then gradually expand.

“4G services are expected to significantly increase data consumption in Jordan,” Hanandeh noted.

Citing international studies, he said the number of 4G users around the world is expected to reach 9 billion by the year 2018. 

The introduction of 4G services in Jordan is expected to boost video consumption, according to Zain Jordan, with video usage forecast to grow by 300 per cent.

Zain Jordan, which recently acquired frequencies to expand its 3G services, is planning to upgrade its infrastructure to enhance these services, Hanandeh said.

Last week, ICT Minister Azzam Sleit said Zain Jordan, a unit of Kuwaiti-based Mobile Telecommunications Co., has acquired the frequencies to provide 4G services in return for JD142 million, and the company also acquired other frequencies for JD50 million to enhance and expand its 3G network.

The government had invited the country’s three operators —  Zain Jordan, Orange Jordan and Umniah — to submit requests to acquire frequencies to provide 4G services after it turned down bids from KULACOM Jordan and US-based Ameriphone.

Mobile penetration in Jordan reached 156 per cent at the end of 2013, with 10.3 million subscriptions, according to official figures.

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