Singtel launches 450Mbps service islandwide

Singtel launches 450Mbps service islandwide
Singtel logo. TODAY file photo
New network for 4G users has a 50 per cent faster download speed than current LTE services
Published: 4:00 AM, January 12, 2017
Updated: 3:46 PM, January 12, 2017

SINGAPORE — Singtel yesterday launched a faster mobile network service for all its 4G subscribers at no additional charge, allowing those holding compatible handsets to download a full length HD movie in under two minutes.

Currently, only the Samsung Galaxy S7 and the model’s edge iteration can tap onto this new 450Mbps service — up to 50 per cent faster download speed than prevailing Long-Term Evolution (LTE) services.

Meanwhile, the telco also said that it aims to progressively provide up to 1Gbps speeds at selected high-traffic locations from next year.

Together with Ericsson, it recently managed to hit this download speed in a live 4G network pilot at two sites in Pasir Ris.

Singtel CEO of Consumer Singapore, Mr Yuen Kuan Moon, said it was “investing ahead to deliver faster speeds and wider connections with the steady deployment of innovative technologies on our live network”.

He added: “Achieving 1Gbps speeds on our live network marks a significant milestone in our journey to 5G.”

In response to queries, M1 said its customers can expect to enjoy download speeds of up to 1Gbps islandwide by the second half of this year when it rolls out its Heterogeneous Network.

The telco’s chief technical officer Denis Seek also said it is closely monitoring developments in 5G technology, which will offer even faster download speeds.

“Ahead of 5G technology standards finalisation, which the GSMA is current reviewing, M1 conducted a 5G trial last week that achieved Singapore’s highest 5G transmission speeds of 35Gbps,” he said. “We expect to deploy 5G technology when technology standards are finalised and when mainstream 5G consumer devices are available. The GSMA is expected to finalise 5G standards by 2020.”

StarHub said it has been testing new network technologies that offer gigabit data speeds and “are prepared to deploy them for customers when more spectrum and supported phone models become available”.

Mr Chong Siew Loong, head of the telco’s Network Engineering, added that upload performance is just as important for mobile service as customers increasingly share larger files.

“We have completed the tripling of 4G upload bandwidth in Marina Bay and Orchard, with nationwide coverage within the first half of this year,” he added.

Commenting on the developments, principal analyst Clement Teo of technology consultancy Ovum said: “In Singapore, increasing network speeds is materially important to end users, and something that operators with the largest and best performing 4G networks have capitalised on. This will be no different for 5G.”