CSL launching 300Mbps LTE-A in 1Q14
Hong Kong cellco CSL will roll out LTE Advanced (LTE-A) services – doubling its current theoretical mobile peak download speeds to 300Mbps – across its network in the next three to four months. CSL’s chief technology officer Christian Daigneault said the new technology would continue to be laboratory tested over the coming months and new LTE-A compatible devices would be available to CSL subscribers next year, when the network ‘will be mature’.
The new speeds are to be marketed under the banner ‘LTE-A300’. The latest speed increase on CSL’s commercial LTE network came in May this year when it launched ‘Category 4’ (CAT 4) LTE devices for customers of its 1O1O and one2free brands, supporting 150Mbps downlink, faster than the previous 100Mbps speed limit. CSL’s CEO Phil Mottram said he anticipated that LTE-A300 would offer mobile internet speeds that its rivals could not match – due to the fact that CSL currently has a wider combined bandwidth allocation in the 1800MHz and 2600MHz frequency bands – and he claimed that the highest theoretical speed currently possible on a competitor’s network was 225Mbps. Telstra subsidiary CSL spent CAPEX of HKD922 million (USD119 million) in its fiscal year ended June 2013, and Mottram said it would invest a similar amount in the current year, mainly on mobile broadband network development. He added that LTE-A300 pricing would be the same as current packages, explaining that ‘essentially what most of our customers are buying nowadays is a data package. We are just allowing them to get the data faster.’