Russian mobile operator MegaFon has increased the speed of mobile internet by 30% in 24 regions by implementing a frequency refarming programme to transfer existing 2G/3G spectrum to its 4G LTE network, the company’s press department disclosed. MegaFon technical director Alexey Titov said: ‘The load on the networks of operators is constantly growing: video content, applications, online games are becoming heavier. Refarming is an effective technical solution for increasing network capacity under heavy loads.’
In various regions the 1800MHz band began to be used exclusively for 4G, and part of the 900MHz band was also transferred to LTE, with remaining 2G capacity adequate to provide high quality voice communications, MegaFon reported. To further increase 4G capacity, either two or three 2100MHz frequency blocks were migrated from 3G UMTS to LTE in a number of territories, whilst the cellco noted that in these regions 3G-reliant devices will continue to be supported, including ATM machines and IoT sensors. Alongside speed increases, the refarming improved network coverage and penetration of the network inside buildings in both small towns and large cities. The coverage area of VoLTE technology on the 4G network has also significantly expanded, MegaFon said. The refarming programme will continue through 2023.