Singapore mobile network operators (MNOs) StarHub and M1 have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that seeks to explore ways of extending mobile infrastructure sharing provisions in a bid to reduce operational costs as they expand their 4G LTE networks across the city-state. The Strait Times reports that the MoU covers mobile equipment such as base transceiver stations (BTS) and backhaul fibre-optic facilities, and marks a ‘first’ among MNOs in Singapore. Until now the pair have established only limited sharing – e.g. shared antenna systems and in-building fibre cabling – but under the new provisions the MNOs will now consider ways of marshalling their collective resources to roll out next generation services more cost effectively.
Like many operators around the globe, StarHub and M1 are seeing an exponential rise in demand for mobile data. To help meet this, StarHub CEO Tan Tong Hai said: ‘We are cooperating to bring the Singapore infocomm industry to the next level, to compete not on pure infrastructure ownership, but at a higher level of customer service and innovative value creation.’ Echoing his words, his counterpart at M1, Karen Kooi, said if the MoU becomes a reality, it could run its existing mobile services efficiently ‘and still be able to invest in future technologies to keep Singapore at the forefront of the infocomm industry’.