Uzbekistan becomes newest recipient of commercial LTE

The Russian operator Mobile TeleSystems (MTS) has launched commercial LTE in Uzbekistan, making it the second operator in the world to launch the next-generation technology.

The network has been deployed in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, with MTS claiming that coverage will be ‘significantly’ expanded in the near future. Describing the network as the ‘first fully operational 4G network in the CIS and Central Asia’, MTS also claims that peak speeds could reach 100Mb/s using LTE-enabled modems. MTS acquired a licence for the 2.5 – 2.7Ghz spectrum band in October 2009, and has purchased the necessary equipment from Huawei.

"The development of our networks is a key driver for growth, particularly in a region with relatively low fixed-line broadband penetration,” said MTS’ ?leg Raspopov. “The introduction of LTE in Uzbekistan will also allow MTS to gain valuable insight from this unique experience and eventually apply it to other markets of operation in the future.”

With this launch, Uzbekistan becomes only the third market in the world to receive LTE, after Sweden and Norway, where TeliaSonera has launched commercial LTE. Major operators, among them NTT Docomo and Verizon, are planning launches of their own later on in the year.

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