PT Sampoerna Telekomunikasi Indonesia (STI), which currently offers CDMA-based services under the brand name Ceria, has decided to migrate to 4G LTE at 450MHz, IndoTelko reports. The move comes in the wake of it being awarded rights to roll out 4G at 450MHz nationwide in mid-February. Commenting on the licence award, Gunawan Hutagalung, team coordinator of the Feasibility Test Operations Directorate General of Post and Information Technology at the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT, known locally as KemKominfo), said that having prepared the groundwork STI is now ready to deliver a ‘reliable’ 4G LTE service, adding that KemKominfo is hopeful the cellco can ‘step into the next stage’ in the near future. STI CEO Larry Ridwan said: ‘The LTE-450 signal range can reach more than 100km. With these characteristics, STI will be able to focus on bringing 4G LTE services to those areas which have high demand but no current supply. We are preparing ourselves in terms of network infrastructure, products and marketing – including rejuvenating the Ceria trademark’.
STI is the sole provider of CDMA2000 1x technology at 450MHz in Indonesia and holds a licence giving it full mobility with national coverage. Currently, its network coverage includes the islands of Sumatra, Java, Bali and Lombok. In November 2016, however, the company’s owner – AINMT Holdings (AINMT), the parent company of AINMT Scandinavia Holdings and AINMT International Holdings – welcomed the decision by Indonesian authorities to formally approve the adoption of technology neutrality in the country’s 450MHz frequency band, where STI holds 2×7.5MHz of spectrum. As such, STI is confident of its ability to build an LTE-450 network across Indonesia to provide widespread coverage to some 260 million Indonesians spread across more than 14,000 islands.