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WiMax service for general customers from mid-Feb: NT

KATHMANDU, JAN 17 -

General customers eyeing to use WiMax—wireless broadband service—will have to keep patience for one more month, with Nepal Telecom (NT) carrying out preparations to extend the much sought after service within mid-February. Currently, the service is available only to corporate clients.

WiMax is a part of the fourth generation (4G) communication technology that provides high-speed wireless internet service over vast distances like the mobile phone network. The state-owned telecom operator had earlier planned to start the service to home users from early January.

Preparations in devising package, procurement of necessary equipment, according to NT officials, cause the delay in service’s launch for the general customers.

The telecom giant has signed contracts with two local companies—Airmax Technology and Unitech Network—to provide the service under a bundling scheme. The two companies would provide required consumer premise equipment (USB dongle) and WiMax service.

As per the agreement between NT and the two companies, there is still one month left to start the service.

“These two companies are procuring USB dongles and will start providing bundled services within Mid-February,” said Rajesh Joshi, deputy spokesperson for the NT. In the initial phase, each company will have to set up 13 customer care centres across the country for sales of service and the USB dongles.

Such centres will also provide after sales service to the customers who subscribe to the WiMax internet service. The companies will be reponsible for carrying out market survey, selling the service, providing after sales service and honouring the warranty and guarantee for the devices sold.

The idea behind distributing WiMax service in bundled package was to provide customer service in a more effective way. Through this project, the NT has planned to cover 1,923 VDCs and 24 municipalities in the western part of the country and 2,092 VDCs and 34 municipalities in the East by the end of this year.

The NT said it would shortly announce the tariff for general users and price of the USB dongle. The company has been proving the service to corporate users in Kathmandu, Banepa, Dhulikhel and Chitwan, at charges ranging between Rs 650 per month for 5 GB package to Rs 5,190 for 60 GB with internet speed of 1 mbps or higher. More than 100 corporate customers have subscribed to the service so far, according to the NT.

The company is undergoing final preparation to extend the service in Sindhupalchwok, Dolakha and Ramechhap, which the service is in the test phase in Butwal, Bhairahawa and Pokhara. The WiMax internet project has a total capacity of 200,000 lines.

Posted on: 2013-01-18 08:57


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