DTAC upgrading 10,000 cell sites

14 Jan 2011

Thailand’s second largest cellco by subscribers, Digital Total Access Communication (DTAC), intends to begin a major network renewal project in March, involving equipment upgrades at over 10,000 cell sites, reports Dow Jones Newswires, adding that half of the sites are expected to be upgraded by the end of this year, with the project scheduled for completion in 2012. The company said that the programme will result in better quality voice and data services and faster access for smartphone users, whilst readying the network for the full rollout of 3G services, although it declined to reveal a vendor or cost for the project. Currently, DTAC operates trial 850MHz HSPA-based 3.5G services with limited coverage, but will soon be expanding the pre-commercial footprint under an initial THB1 billion (USD33 million) budget after gaining permission to roll out additional 3G base stations. Meanwhile, the country’s 2100MHz licensing process remains on hold.