Orange Jordan on Tuesday announced the launch of its fourth generation (4G) services in the Kingdom, providing mobile and wireless broadband connectivity at speeds reaching up to 70 megabits per second.
The launch process will initially bring 4G coverage to most urban areas in Amman. The roll-out will quickly expand to deliver full nationwide coverage by the third quarter of 2015, Orange Jordan CEO Jean-Francois Thomas told reporters.
The operator also intends to make 4G connectivity accessible to all consumer segments by implementing “careful pricing and quality control strategies”, he said.
The launch of 4G services is part of the country’s strategy for 2020 under which it seeks to improve networks, provide Internet at higher speeds and increase coverage across the Kingdom.
In March, Orange Jordan signed a deal with China’s Huawei to build its 4G network and upgrade its second and third generation networks to further improve services.
At Tuesday’s press conference, Thomas said the company is also undertaking a large-scale refurbishment of its existing third and second generation networks, and these enhancements entail an investment of more than JD200 million.
The company said its 3G network covers 75 percent of the population and by the end of this year it will reach more than 90 percent.
Thomas noted that similar improvements will also affect the 4G network, which will expand to reach around 85 percent of the population within the same time frame.
Orange’s 2G network reaches more than 99 percent of Jordanians nationwide, he added.
“With 4G, customers can enjoy faster browsing and file sharing, and improved application performance,” Thomas said, noting that mobile data consumption is on the rise in Jordan, where smartphone penetration stands at around 50 percent and adoption of these devices grows by 7-10 percent annually.
According to Thomas, 98 percent of smartphone users use WhatsApp.
Also speaking at the press conference, ICT Minister Majd Shweikeh said the 4G network represents an important asset for the country’s ICT industry.
“The launch of 4G services will bring benefits not only to individuals and big corporates but also to start-ups and entrepreneurs that rely on higher speeds,” the minister said.
Underlining the importance of public-private partnerships in the roll-out of the services and introducing 4G at the country’s knowledge stations, Shweikeh noted that it will help boost the ICT sector and increase competitiveness.
By Mohammad Ghazal
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