Brazil’s leading mobile operator by subscribers Vivo, a unit of Spain’s Telefonica, has launched commercial 4G LTE services in Curitiba, the state capital of Parana, increasing its coverage of ultra-high speed mobile services to 17 cities. Vivo’s launch is also ahead of schedule when it comes to Anatel’s proposed rollout schedule: Curitiba, a 2014 World Cup host city, should receive the technology by 31 December 2013.
At launch, Vivo has inaugurated 4G services in 30 areas of the city, serving at least 50% of the population there – as per the terms and conditions of its licence award. Going forward, Vivo intends to ramp up its service coverage in the region, as well as rolling out 4G to a number of Rio Grande do Sul state localities in the next few months.
Last week, TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate reported that Vivo added Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul state to its 4G network, becoming the second Brazilian cellco, behind Claro, to offer 4G there. Vivo is already operational with its LTE service in the cities of Sao Paulo, Brasilia, Fortaleza, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte and Salvador, and has also launched 4G commercially in several municipalities in Sao Paulo state. It claimed 29,400 LTE mobile accesses at 30 April 2013, a segment share of around 61%. At the same date Anatel said there were over 50,000 4G subscribers in Brazil, up sharply from the 14,700 figure reported by the watchdog a month before.