AKEP unveils 4G timeline; 900MHz/1800MHz bands to come into play on 1 September

10 Jul 2015

The governing council of the Authority of Electronic and Postal Communications (AKEP) of Albania has released a timeline for the introduction of 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) services in the country. Under the outline plan, as of 8 July incumbent operators Albtelecom (Eagle Mobile), Albanian Mobile Communications (AMC), Vodafone Albania and Plus Communications have all been granted permission to carry out tests using the 900MHz and 1800MHz frequency bands, and must report back to the regulator with their findings by 15 August. Data regarding modulation, encoding, signals and interfaces must be submitted to AKEP for evaluation; if the technical standards achieved during the tests are deemed satisfactory, the cellcos will be free to stage their respective commercial 4G launches from 1 September.

TeleGeography notes that 1800MHz licences were awarded to Albtelecom, AMC and Vodafone on 20 March 2015, while 11 May saw all four cellcos issued with 2×5MHz blocks in the 900MHz band.

Meanwhile, Vodafone and AMC also secured 2600MHz spectrum on 11 May, while the distribution of paired spectrum in the 1900MHz/2100MHz band was subsequently authorised on 22 June, with Albtelecom and AMC scooping the frequencies.