Nepal Telecom is ending WiMAX broadband service by the month of Poush this year. WiMax is one of the large-scale wireless internet technologies in Nepal, implemented by the government-owned telco. As FTTH service expands rapidly, the national telco doesn’t see giving continuity to a commercially unviable wireless service. The company has already terminated its WiMAX expansion and will migrate the existing WiMAX customers to other broadband connections like fiber FTTH.
The state-backed telco revealed the plan to discontinue the 4G-based WiMAX service in its yearly program. NTC will spend an estimated 4 crores, 89 lakhs, and 84 thousand rupees, as per Media reports. Before the company halts WiMAX, it will shift the customers to other broadband connections.
The company will finalize its infrastructure required for transferring the existing Wi-MAX customers to other connections by Ashoj. NTC expects to completely shut down the service by Poush 2078.
NTC’s Wi-MAX Now ‘Irrelevant’
NTC began WiMAX service in 2069 Kartik to establish connections in rural areas of Nepal. The company is operating the wireless broadband service in a 30 MHz frequency of 2300 MHz spectrum band. But the service is limited to a select few areas in hilly regions.
Due to the massive interference from Indian telco Jio, Nepal Telecom had to halt the service in the southern belt and also stop the WiMAX expansion before. Now that cellular broadband, fiber broadband has reached nooks and corners, WiMAX growth stumbled.
NTC has also begun replacing its ADSL with FTTH that comes with the popular Triple Play service. This is why the Company halted the Wi-MAX service. To add further, Wi-MAX technology has not seen many innovations in the world lately and coming to a halt all over.
As per NTA’s MIS report, WiMAX has a total of 90 thousand, and 563 subscribers as of Chaitra of 2077 across the country, which is actually 18,500 households (shared among 4.88 subscribers in a family). NTC will now migrate its customers from Wi-MAX to other internet solutions and switch off the wireless broadband by Poush 2078.
After the shut down of the WiMax service, we could have expected the telco to use the WiMAX spectrum for 4G/5G Cellular technologies, with tech neutrality. Nepal has not yet decided on the 5G spectrum band. Whereas the TDD band is not included in the NTA’s roadmap for 5G development. So, the future of this band remains dark in Nepal.
Have you been NTC’s WiMAX broadband subscriber? If yes, let us know how its phase-out will impact you in the comments below.