My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: @LIMEJamaica's downpayment on High-Bandwidth AWS Spectrum - How FLOW rebranding and Jamaican Call Center means 4G LTE coming in December 2015

Thursday, May 28, 2015

@LIMEJamaica's downpayment on High-Bandwidth AWS Spectrum - How FLOW rebranding and Jamaican Call Center means 4G LTE coming in December 2015

“Global trends show the growth in market demand for IMT­advanced (4G) services. This trend and the response of manufacturers to develop standards which can provide the services have contributed to the recommendation to exclusively designate the band to accommodate mobile services......To meet this demand, service providers require spectrum sufficient for the provision of islandwide services. The technical characteristics of the AWS band make it an attractive option for interested players”

Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining Phillip Paulwell commenting on LIME Jamaica part payment for the AWS Spectrum band that they’ll use to provision 4G LTE 

With the full backing of CWC (Cable and Wireless Communications), the parts needed to launch their 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) Networks are slowly falling into place.

Telecom Provider LIME is set to pay JA$1.3 billion (US$11.5 million) as part of the license agreement to purchase the AWS (Advanced Wireless Services) spectrum to launch their4GLTE Wireless Broadband Service as reported in the article “Spectrum Band Sold To LIME”, Published Sunday April 19, 2015, The Jamaica Gleaner


  
This isn't the full amount for the 24 MHz blocks of spectrum being purchased by Telecom Provider LIME, as the total cost stands at JA$2.6 billion (US$23.1 million) for these blocks of AWS spectrum.

Also, this announcement is a confirmation of the agreement that was reached nearly a year ago back in April 2014 to acquire the AWS Spectrum as noted in my blog article entitled “LIME and Digicel have purchase AWS and 700 MHZ Spectrum for 4G LTE - Spectrum Purchase by the Number with Strings Attached as Ministry gets kitty donations from Local Telcos”. 

In exchange for this part payment, Telecom Provider LIME will get the following blocks of spectrum as noted in my blog article entitled “LIME chooses AWS for 4G LTE – AWS  Link Budget difference reduces Shadowing as It’s all about Optimization and Human Nature”.  

1.      12 MHz Band consisting of Spectrum from 1710 MHz to 1722 MHz
2.      12 MHz Band consisting of Spectrum from 2110 MHz to 2122 MHz

Additionally, along with the total of JA$2.6 billion (US$23.1 million) which has to be paid, there is also some outstanding licensing fees that both Telecom Providers owe to the Government of Jamaica via the Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining as follows:

1.      JA$9.36 billion in License Fees, of which Telecom Provider Digicel has paid JA$5.48 billion
2.      JA$3.29 billion in License Fees, of which Telecom Provider LIME has paid JA$1.53 billion

So you see dear reader, we haven’t heard the last of this matter, as we’ll possibly start hearing announcements about 4G LTE in the next few months leading up to the end of 2015, when it’s widely expected that Both telecom Providers will launch their respective 4G LTE Networks.

LIME going with the FLOW – Call Center means 4G LTE to be launched in December 2015

LIME Jamaica is currently in a state of Transition, having recant made the decision to not only change their name across the Caribbean to FLOW as noted in my Geezam blog article entitled “LIME Jamaica Goes with the FLOW thanks to Caribbean-wide Survey”.

CWC, the parent company of LIME Jamaica, is also set to re-establish a 200 Seat Call Center in Jamaica sometime in December 2015 as reported in my blog article entitled “@LIMEJamaica's 200-seat Call Center by December 2015 – Going with the Flow and JCF’s Real Time Emergency Call Centre heralds entry into BPO”. 

The choice of AWS is an excellent one, as not only does it have the bandwidth to ensure fast upload and download speeds but thanks to Jamaica’s terrain the higher frequency is suitable for this type of service as argued in my blog article entitled “LIME chooses AWS for 4G LTE – AWS Link Budget difference reduces Shadowing as It’s all about Optimization and Human Nature”.  

Many of the users of LIME 4G LTE Service will most likely be homeowners who need Broadband access at their homes, with a few customers wanting Mobile 4G Broadband.
Homeowners are stationary, making it easy to establish line-of-sight with LIME's antennas provisioned with 4G LTE in a manner similar to how Digicel's 4G Broadband based on WiMaX works.

As for mobile customers, their mobility and focus on using their various Apps on their smartphones means that AWS spectrum can work for smartphones as well, as the customer will most likely be standing still most of the time while on their Tablets or smartphones.

So with the name change and Call Center coming in December 2015, expect LIME Jamaica to have a Christmas 2015 launch for their 4G LTE Network as well!

AWS vs 700MHz Band – Lower Penetrating Power but Bandwidth Galore

AWS may not have the penetrating power of Digicel's 700 MHz band for 4G LTE, which they most likely will use to provide a VAS (Value added Service) in the form of SportsMax Streaming Cable TV as detailed in my blog article entitled “Digicel purchases SportsMax – Why No Games, Just Sports on Digicel's Streaming Cable TV over Bigger, Better Network 4G LTE and FTTH”.

But it has the bandwidth for a whole host of broadband based services, from Streaming LIME TV to VoLTE (Voice over LTE) as described in my blog article entitled “Digicel and LIME going VoLTE - Why GSM extinct and Spectrum reused for M2M Services in HD Audio and Video Caribbean VoLTE-Age”.

So come December 2015, the predicted month that LIME may launch 4G LTE, we'll get an idea of what LIME, by then branded as FLOW, has in store for Jamaica.




Post a Comment