VivaCell-MTS Launches 4G Test Network in Armenia

PM Tigran Sargsian (L) and VivaCell-MTS CEO Ralph Yirikian (R) at the launch of VivaCell-MTS 4G test-network

PM Tigran Sargsian (L) and VivaCell-MTS CEO Ralph Yirikian (R) at the launch of VivaCell-MTS 4G test-network

VivaCell-MTS, Armenia’s largest mobile operator announced the commercial test-launch of 4G LTE network in Yerevan a little over a month after Orange Armenia staged a public demonstration in the Armenian capital.

VivaCell-MTS, the subsidiary of Mobile TeleSystems OJSC, announced today the launch of the Long-term Evolution (LTE) test network in Yerevan (the center and Komitas Avenue neighborhoods). The company says this is the first step towards the full-scale rollout of 4G/LTE network in Armenia.

VivaCell-MTS and Orange Armenia (third largest mobile operator) have been competing closely on the mobile internet market announcing data plans, free 3G USB modems, etc since Orange’s entry into the Armenian mobile market late in 2009.

Beeline (Armentel), Armenia’s leading fixed-line phone operator, second largest operator and the largest internet provider due to its Hi-Line (aDSL) and Dial-up offerings, has been taking a more conservative approach as regards the launch of mobile internet services. While it offers 3G in large cities and probably plans 4G as well, Beeline doesn’t particularly accentuate its mobile internet offerings, preferring to concentrate on Hi-Line.

At the official ceremony of launching the test 4G network, attended by the Prime Minister of Armenia Tigran Sargsyan and other high-ranking officials, live testing demonstration with uploading and downloading streams were conducted using LTE modems. The theoretical capacity of the 4G network was showcased: 150 Mbps download and 50 Mbps upload speeds were demonstrated at the test launch.
The end-to-end solution for 4G network roll-out in Yerevan was done with the support of Ericsson and Huawei.
“VivaCell-MTS’ LTE roll-out positions Armenia to be one of the selected global leaders in 4G deployment. In addition, the launch of 4G is expected to present Armenia as a country with attractive communication infrastructure,” commented VivaCell-MTS General Manager Ralph Yirikian.
LTE, the new generation mobile communication technology, enables the provisioning of new mobile applications with higher bandwidth demand.
Earlier this year, on November 10th, the PSRC (Public Services Regulatory Commission) of the Republic of Armenia granted VivaCell-MTS a permission for building mobile network through based on LTE technology. According to the PSRC decision, VivaCell-MTS must have launched the LTE network as a commercial service before March 1, 2011.
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3 thoughts on “VivaCell-MTS Launches 4G Test Network in Armenia

  1. I didn’t know Hayastan was past 2G
    I’m glad to see & know Yerevan is getting into 4G technology
    here in usa, verizon is set to launch LTE-4G in January
    Sprint would be 1st to do this as it’s been working on 4G last 2 years, updating their infrastructure during entire 2010. at&t will eventually follow suit and launch their 4G network prior to new iPhone release in June/July 2011, which we iPhone users know that the next iPhone will be 4G-LTE version (hence why at&t is waiting as apple has exclusive contract with at&t)
    although there are very strong credible rumors floating around in iPhone world that verizon & apple have finally struck a deal and that verizon will be debuting it’s iPhone in January 2011. we dont know if this is true, but sources close to verizon execs have leaked out that verizon already has the new LTE iPhone ready-to-go and that its been stock piling it for last few months and that verizon plans to have their iPhone ready to sell in all verizon stores & outlets as soon as it’s announced. kind of odd since at&t and apple have a very exclusive iron clad 5 yr contract between them since 1st release of iPhone 2007. other rumors out there are that at&t begged apple to not release LTE iPhone with verizon until after x-mas so that way at&t can try to sell iPhone4 as much as it can for holidays, because at&t knows many of its iPhone subscribers want to desperately defect to verizon for better service & lower rated plans. for those of you who dont know, many in usa want the iPhone but dont want to use it on at&t service. they want to have iPhone w/ verizon. which is easy, all anyone has to do is buy any iPhone via at&t or via apple store and unlock it to use it on any major carrier that can support iPhone

    I have iP-4, I’m with at&t and I’m very happy with it. dont know what the hell everyone is complaining about. I never receive bad service or dropped calls with at&t. however I’ve never used verizon, so I can’t compare. I’ve been with the same number & service for last 10 years (cingular – now at&t). since I jumped on iPhone in Sept. 2009 I pay $80/mo. ($40 for voice w/ rollover + $30 for unlimited internet-data + $8-10 in taxes and other misc. fees) I dont know what the average iPhone user is paying in Yerevan. how much is 1,000 mins a month + unlimited data service in Hayastan? and can that service take me all through out Hayastan-Arcax? or is it limited to Yerevan only?

  2. This reminds me of a PCV Armenia journal entry I read a couple of days ago, where I was struck by how even the most basic things that should be taken for granted are an elusive dream in Armenia…
    It read in part, “I have water in the evenings starting around 3:00 pm. No water in the mornings.But I do have 3G internet, which I am using to write this blog post. I have a questionable shower, with hot water for about ten minutes until the breaker trips.I have a stove that I light with matches when I turn the gas on. ”
    (link – http://josephrobertclark.blogspot.com/2010/12/peace-corps-extreme-makeover-home.html).

    Now come to find out that we’re moving upward and onward to 4G. Glad to see we have our priorities straight.

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