Vodafone India, the second largest mobile operator by subscribers in Kerala state in the south-west region of India, has announced plans to launch its own 3G services in the very near future. Until now, the cellco has been offering its users high speed mobile internet via a tie-up with rival Idea Cellular. However, Vodafone’s head of business for the Kerala circle, Abhijit Kishore, told local newspaper The Express Times: ‘In the last fiscal, our data services have registered a phenomenal revenue growth of 75%. This has encouraged us to roll out our own 3G services in the state within the next three to six months’.
Vodafone India secured 3G operating licences for Kerala and four other circles in March this year, and already holds a concession to offer 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) services. Asked whether Vodafone would now launch 4G in the state too, Kishore said that before that could happen it would be necessary to first assess whether the ’ecosystem’ has fully evolved for rollout of the service. At least one of its rivals in Kerala is known to be readying 4G. ‘We already have the spectrum, but 4G is all about offering an unparalleled data experience. In order to enjoy that experience, creating the adequate ecosystem is very important. Availability of good quality LTE-compatible handsets and its affordability in the market are important factors,’ Kishore told the paper.