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History of Telecommunication in Nepal dates back to 1913 when the first telephone line was introduced in Kathmandu with an open-wire trunk between Kathmandu and Raxual (Indian border town) in 1914. With the evolution of the services from the early days, we have reached a much developed telecom market here in Nepal, along with the introduction of advanced technologies.
To date, there are six Telecom operators with a broad range of technologies (Landline / Mobile / WLL) like PSTN, ADSL, GSM, CDMA, WCDMA, LTE, EVDO, NGN, SIP. Nepal Telecom (previously Nepal Telecommunication Corporation) is the incumbent operator, owned by the government of Nepal being the only one landline operator. It has almost all services/technologies in almost all areas of the nation. Among them, Nepal Telecom (NTC) and Ncell are the only telcos that have nationwide mobile coverage.
Ncell (previously Spice Nepal), previously Teliasonera associate (now an Axiata company) is a fast-growing GSM operator of the nation. It adopts new business strategies and approaches to allure customers to their network. STM Sanchar, an American invest is a rural basic telephony operator with a satellite link, especially available in Mountainous Region where there is no option for other services.
Now CG Telecom acquired the whole STM Sanchar telecom company. UTL, United Telecom is a joint venture of three Indian Telecom giants( MTNL, TCIL, TCL) with Nepal Ventures Private Limited (NVPL), operating in CDMA technology for WLL and Mobile. But UTL’s service is not available now.
Among Others, Nepal satellite and Smart cell are two operators given GSM License and frequency operating in different Rural VDC (Village Development Committee) and later to get the license to operate all over the nation (including populous cities Kathmandu, Biratnagar, Pokhara, etc). UTL, Smart has already got the unified license to operate GSM service in all parts of the country.
Nepal Telecom had launched 4G LTE service in Kathmandu and Pokhara at the beginning of the year 2017. Ncell then introduced 4G in major cities of Nepal and become the one with widest 4G Coverage. Similarly, Smart telecom has also expanded its 4G coverage to 19 districts. Another telecom operator CG Telecom had inked a huge deal with Huawei for a 4G network but they are yet to receive the mobile telephony license called the unified license.
Nepal Telecom expands 4G service to all 77 districts but not all parts of the country. They are known to expand 4G to all areas of the country.
Here are some major milestones in the history of telecommunication of Nepal.
|S.N||Year||Telecom Milestone Event|
|1||2020||NTC 4G reaches to all 77 districts of Nepal|
|2||2017||NTC starts the migration of old TDM landlines to IP based phones.|
|3||2017||Nepal Telecom, Ncell, and Smart Cell launches 4G Service in Nepal|
|4||2016||Axiata bought 80 pc stake in Ncell, from Teliasonera|
|5||2016||Tele-density crosses 100 percent in Nepal|
|6||2011||Overall Teledensity of Nepal crossed 50 percent.|
|7||2011||Launching of GSM 3G Data Only Service (Nepal Telecom)|
|8||2011||Launching of EasyPhone SIP PPP Service (Nepal Telecom)|
|9||2010||Launching of EasyPhone SIP EasyCall Service (Nepal Telecom)|
|10||2010||High-Speed Internet on the Top of the world (Ncell)|
|11||2010||Soft Launch of EasyPhone IP Call Service (Nepal Telecom)|
|12||2010||High-Speed data Card launched from Ncell. Ncell Connect.|
|13||2010||EVDO Service started (Nepal Telecom)|
|14||2010||Blackberry Service launched in Ncell.|
|15||2010||Mero Mobile Rebranded to Ncell.|
|16||2009||Postpaid CDMA Mobile Service started (Nepal Telecom)|
|17||2008||Smart Tel awarded a license for GSM rural telephony for 4 Development regions other than EDR.|
|18||2008||Broadband ADSL Service launched. (Nepal Telecom)|
|19||2008||Nepal Satellite TeleCommunications awarded a license for GSM rural telephony in MWDR.|
|20||2008||TeliaSonera Acquired Ncell, then Spice Nepal (Ncell)|
|21||2007||GPRS, 3G, and CRBT Services introduced in GSM Mobile. (Nepal Telecom)|
|22||2007||Expansion of Internet Bandwidth via Optical link between Nepal & India. (Nepal Telecom)|
|23||2007||National Roaming for CDMA Mobile (Sky Phone) started. (Nepal Telecom)|
|24||2006||CDMA Limited Servies in Kathmandu Valley. (Nepal Telecom)|
|25||2005||Access Network Services. (Nepal Telecom)|
|26||2005||Soft launch of CDMA. (Nepal Telecom)|
|27||2005||Mero Mobile GSM Service launched (Ncell)|
|28||2004||Prepaid Calling Card Service (IN Services).(Nepal Telecom)|
|29||2004||NEPAL TELECOM(Transformation from Corporation to a Company)|
|30||2003||GSM Prepaid Service. (Nepal Telecom)|
|31||2003||STM Telecom Sanchar licensed for rural Telephony.|
|32||2002||East-West Highway Optical Fiber Project (Nepal Telecom)|
|33||2002||UTL got the license for CDMA WLL and Limited mobility.|
|34||2000||Launching of Internet Service. (Nepal Telecom)|
|35||2000||Implementation of SDH Microwave Radio. (Nepal Telecom)|
|36||1999||Launching of GSM Mobile services. (Nepal Telecom)|
|37||1997||Digital Link with D.O.T. India through Optical Fiber in Birgunj – Raxual.(Nepal Telecom)|
|38||1996||Introduction of VSAT services. (Nepal Telecom)|
|39||1996||Independent Int. Gateway Exchange established.|
|40||1996||Automation of the entire Telephone Network|
|41||1996||Conversion of all Transmission link to Digital transmission link|
|42||1995||Installation of Optical Fiber Network|
|43||1984||Commencement of STD service|
|44||1983||Establishment of digital Telephone Exchange|
|45||1965||First Automatic exchange in Nepal (1000 lines in Kathmandu)|
|46||1964||Beginning of International Telecommunications Service (HF Radio) to India and Pakistan|
|47||1962||First Public Telephone Exchange in Kathmandu (300 lines CB)|
|48||1955||Distribution of telephone line to the general public|
|49||1935||Installation of 25 lines automatic exchange in Royal Palace|
|50||1914||Establishment of Open wire Trunk Link from Kathmandu to Raxaul (India)|
|51||1913||Establishment of first telephone lines in Kathmandu|
We suggest you read Telecommunications in Nepal: Current state and needs >>
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