Russian operators come together for widespread LTE rollout

LTE received a major boost today, as it was announced by mobile provider Yota that the five major networks will join hands to share Yota's next generation network. According to Reuters, MTS, Vimpelcom, MegaFon, and Rostelecom will all be joining Yota to provide Russia's 141 million citizens with superfast wireless coverage.

Currently, Yota plans to bring LTE to 180 cities by 2014, serving an estimated 70 million people. Figures place Russia's phone subscribers at somewhere around 200 million, so Yota will be serving LTE to a significant portion of potential customers. 

The four companies joining will have the option to buy a 25% sake in Yota, according to a report. The deal itself is said to be worth around $2 billion, and will be signed in the presence of Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin, keen to publicise the country's technological advancement.

With other countries now following suit and jumping on the LTE bandwagon, the race is on to provide the best coverage as quickly as possible. Verizon previously announced plans to bring coverage to 110 million Americans by the end of this year, serving around 60 airports and 38 metropolitan areas. This figure was later boosted to 100 areas and 175 million people by year's end.

The UK is not looking to be so lucky. As Ofcom drags its feet in wireless auctioning, estimates place a widespread LTE rollout somewhere in 2014. Meanwhile, countries such as Sweden, Australia and Kenya are already well on their way to bringing widespread coverage, joining in with the global race to 4G.

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9 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

WOW. heavy comment editing.
since when the comment are so heavily censored here?

Comments about the fact that the article had wrongly named Putin as the president instead of prime minister were appropriate.

Why the censorship. Many other articles on here did similar mistakes, and were just corrected, with author acknowledging the issue, and everyone happy.

Not cool.

panacea said,
WOW. heavy comment editing.
since when the comment are so heavily censored here?

Comments about the fact that the article had wrongly named Putin as the president instead of prime minister were appropriate.

Why the censorship. Many other articles on here did similar mistakes, and were just corrected, with author acknowledging the issue, and everyone happy.

Not cool.

LOL Most likely it's an ego thing and an attempt to save face.

panacea said,
WOW. heavy comment editing.
since when the comment are so heavily censored here?

Comments about the fact that the article had wrongly named Putin as the president instead of prime minister were appropriate.

Why the censorship. Many other articles on here did similar mistakes, and were just corrected, with author acknowledging the issue, and everyone happy.

Not cool.

there is a reason for "report problem" button below the article

use it in those cases

It's been said as an idea, as a vision. Speaking of LTE, Russia is still lagging behind as well, because LTE (and some of UMTS) frequencies are being hold by millitaries since Soviet time. Despite presidential order to clear frequencies they are still not willing to upgrade to another frequencies. So almost no UMTS in Moscow, and no plans for LTE in Russia at least until 2013-2014.

In fact, Yota was at first given the frequencies for LTE communication but then rejected the proposal to take someone from prime minister's relatives into top management, so the frequencies were taken back from them. Now it is actually sold to the "Big 3" mobile operators, who are in control by government.

3G communications in RU s*ck, 4G - way more, so will LTE. Besides there is a wonderful roaming scheme, all the other operators should learn how to take money from their clients. Actually when you leave your native city region, even staying within your operator's network, you get roaming price calls/SMS (at least price x2). So have no illusions about "great progress".

From what I understand the LTE in Russia will be using a very low frequency - something like 450Mhz because of the huge distance it can cover when you consider how distances between villages and cities are enormous It should be a good test bed for using LTE at lower frequencies especially for countries who wish to deploy it but have lower capital costs.

Australia is way behind actually. We only just starting to get fibre optic connections, free wireless to metro places is a few years off for us yet

The UK is always way behind with these kinds of things, way too much feet dragging by regulators and arguing between carriers. by the time we have LTE in the UK the next best thing will be along

Inklin said,
The UK is always way behind with these kinds of things, way too much feet dragging by regulators and arguing between carriers. by the time we have LTE in the UK the next best thing will be along

I wouldn't say always behind, the UK has been ahead of America in terms of 'these kinda things' for the past 10-15 years. Its only now with Ofcom being so pathetic that we have suddenly been caught out with no LTE plans.