Indonesian mobile network operator (MNO) XL Axiata has announced that its 3G network now encompasses some 350 towns and cities across the country, with recent service expansion coming largely as a result of its decision to foreground UMTS-900 in the rollout. The MNO has achieved this threshold in short order: it implemented the plan in October 2016, it said, and has since expanded coverage six-fold from about 40 urban areas at the time of the decision. IndoTelko quotes the firm’s chief service management officer, Yessie D. Yosetya, as saying: ‘The expansion of the coverage area of 3G services is an attempt by XL to continue to improve services to customers and communities. With high speed 3G services, access to the internet and improved data services becomes a better option for [our customers]. We understand the benefits of affordable internet access for increased performance and productivity, which in the end contributes to improving quality of life. Now, [as a result of the expansion] our subscribers in rural areas can also access the internet.’ The official went on to say that by the end of this year a further 150 towns in other districts will benefit from 3G, adding that its UMTS-900 deployment is in line with the implementation of 4G services, which also continues to expand. To support the rollout, XL is also adding capacity to its inter-island backbone networks, and notes that 3G services are currently supported by more than 11,000 new 3G base stations – a figure that will continue to grow in the future.