Bulgarian mobile operator MobilTel (M-Tel) has commercially introduced its LTE network, with population coverage of 75% at launch. The company claims maximum downlink rates of 86Mbps, though it plans to up the speed to 130Mbps, once it receives additional spectrum from the local regulator. Subscription to the 4G network is currently free for three months (until end-July) due to a marketing campaign.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, M-Tel first tested LTE technology in the 1800MHz band in 2011, with plans to roll out the service in four cities in early 2012. The launch of the network, however, was subsequently put on the backburner, due to lack of suitable spectrum. The country’s first 4G network was introduced in May 2014, by wireless broadband provider MAX (previously Max Telecom), which went on to expand the service to 50% of the urban population. Telenor 4G network, meanwhile, was commercially introduced on 1 December 2015 and covered 57% of population one week after launch.