4G LTE in Nepal: Everything you need to know about NTC and Ncell 4G.
In this article:
4G in Nepal timeline
Customers were until then kept in a shadow zone that WiMAX is 4G or at least advertised that 4G in Nepal has already came and deployed. However, that was merely 4G WiMAX the data side of the broadband communication. Customers even rushed to get handheld smartphones that could support 4G WiMAX – only to their surprise that Nepal Telecom’s 4G was just a broadband for the last-mile connectivity and you needed those wireless Customer Premise Equipment (CPE) to position at the top most part of your residence or building. They are now being used by passenger vehicles in long routes to provide Internet on-the-move.
Though late, WiMAX has finally reached in all 75 districts of the country (PR here) as of October 27, 2016. By reach, we mean that at least district headquarters are ensured to be running WiMAX data service (and in most cases this is used to provide NT WiFi hotspot as well.)
And Dhaulagiri is the zone to receive 3G lately despite large population of cellular data users in the four districts of the zone. Read this archaic article “A Mobile Value-added Services Road Map” of Nepal Telecom that could be equally useful for 4G reach.
Nepal Telecom has already received permission to deploy and launch 4G LTE on technology neutral operator in 1800 MHz band from NTA. NTC in the meanwhile plans to launch 4G service initially in metro and sub-metros in the country. However, it’s likely to be available in Kathmandu initially from beginning of 2017. Let’s hope Nepalese (at least Kathmanduties) will be able to see that 4G icon on their smartphone dashboard and surf Internet at much faster speed than what NTC currently supplies from it’s 3G BTSs.
Presently, Ncell delivers data speed of up to 21 Mbps in the Kathmandu Valley and the Everest region. The company plans to gradually modernize its network in other cities out of the Valley as well. Ncell has plans to establish hundreds of sites to reach villages in Nepal (which ultimately will be Village Councils and the operators might be more benefitted!) Ncell presently has 3G data connectivity in 63 districts.
Ncell 4G LTE is already a buzz and slight information is also being shared via Ncell’s social media platforms. Ncell’s customers now can change their 3G SIM cards to 4G Universal SIM cards for free. Plus Ncell 4G SIM card also bring perks to some lucky customers. Let’s hope Ncell 4G LTE will also be available soon and at speed much faster than current 3G speed of 21 Mbps.
Other 4G LTE Efforts in Nepal
4G Smartphone handsets in Nepal
Since 4G LTE Nepal is a technology neutral 1800 MHz availability, meaning currently 3G is available thru the same bandwidth –the current users do not need to change any settings on their phones other than switch that data options to 4G is not already.
According to Apple, their latest flagship smartphone iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 plus support 1800 MHz cellular 4G LTE meaning NTC and Ncell’s 4G service shall run on universal unlocked iPhones as well.
4G LTE Nepal Expectations
Let’s hope 4G LTE will service real data bandwidth benefits as promised to existing and potential data customers in the country – specially NTC will be able to serve 4G like 4G not just like 3G with faster data service at limited locations.