Idea Cellular unveils 4G in southern mkts

Following a stupendous response to its pre-booking offer with over a million service requests, Aditya Birla group-owned Idea Cellular announced the launch of 4G LTE services across all five states of South India — Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Telangana.

Idea is also gearing to launch 4G LTE services by March 2016 in other markets namely Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra and Goa, Punjab, Haryana, North East and Orissa, in a phased manner. By June 2016, Idea’s 4G footprint will cover 750 cities across 10 telecom circles. Idea is the third operator to start 4G LTE services in the country after Airtel and Vodafone.

The towns to be covered with Idea’s 4G services are Kochi, Hosur, Kadapa, Malapuram, Madurai, Mysore, Rajahmundry, Tiruchirappalli, Tirunelveli, Tiruppur, Vijayawada and Vishakhapatnam, while Belgaum, Calicut, Cuddalore, Chitradurga, Guntur, Kakinada, Kancheepuram and Trichur will follow by December 31, 2015.

Idea will rapidly expand 4G services in all Southern India metros and large towns including Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Trivandrum, Mangalore and Coimbatore by March 2016.

“Worldwide, 4G technology is gaining widespread acceptance with global 4G subscriptions crossing 1 billion mark. The launch of Idea 4G LTE services will further expand Idea’s wireless broadband network and propel the brand to an even higher growth trajectory, consolidating its market position,” Idea Cellular managing director Himanshu Kapania said.

Idea Cellular currently holds 1800 MHz 4G spectrum in these ten telecom circles which cover 50 per cent of the telecom market but over 60 per cent of Idea’s gross revenue.

Additionally, Idea has recently signed an agreement with Videocon Telecommunications for acquiring 'Right to Use' 1800 MHz spectrum under 'Spectrum Trading Agreement' in two of its key telecom leadership markets of Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh (West). Post completion of this transaction, 4G services will be extended to 12 service areas, covering 75 per cent of Idea’s revenue base in the country.

Idea also announced its foray into the digital space by announcing a slew of offers by tying up with content aggregators. The company has tied up with Hungama Digital to offer a collection of music content. Besides this, the company has also tied up with EROS to offer movies, short video content and with Opera for games. As part of its handset offering, Idea has partnered with market leader Samsung for special offers on its 4G Smartphones. The company has also tied up with popular smartphone manufacturers including Intex Technologies, Lava, Lenovo and Xolo to offer bundled 4G data plans on smartphones.

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