Smartfren rumoured to be considering 2300MHz auction bid

19 Jan 2016

IndoTelko reports that Indonesian carrier Telekom PT SmartFren (Smartfren) may be interested in participating in the government’s upcoming auction of 2300MHz spectrum, due to kick off in the second quarter of this year. Smartfren president Merza Fachys is quoted as saying that while the company has yet to see the precise details of the state’s proposed auction and the terms and conditions, it is ‘certainly interested in participating,’ when the authorities sell off the remaining 30MHz of spectrum that are no longer ring-fenced for an earlier broadband wireless access (BWA) scheme a few years ago that proposed to award licences on a ‘zonal’ basis. The Smartfren official suggests it would make sense to issue the frequencies ‘en bloc’ as to do otherwise would be ‘inefficient’ and make it difficult for any one company to develop their time division LTE (TD-LTE) network based on such a set-up. Smartfren already owns 30MHz of spectrum in the 2300MHz band.

Earlier this month, TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate reported that Smartfren, a CDMA operator-turned-LTE provider, has laid out ambitious targets for its fledgling 4G mobile service in 2016, including signing five million subscribers by the end of the year and expanding its service coverage to 85 cities from 22 currently. Merza Fachys confirmed that the carrier has sufficient financial reserves to meet its rollout targets, adding that it is working with a number of smartphone manufacturers – such as Lenovo – to improve 4G penetration across the country.

Indonesia, PT Smart Telecom (Smartfren)