French mobile operator SFR has announced that its 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) network has been expanded to cover the seventh arrondissement of the capital Paris, with plans to extend the 4G footprint to cover all 20 arrondissements by the end of 2013. According to the company’s press release, the 4G network will also be available in 300 municipalities in the Ill-de-France region by end-December 2013. SFR pledged to extend its 4G and Dual Carrier (DC)-HSPA+ networks to cover 70% of the country’s population by the end of the year.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, SFR introduced LTE services offering a theoretical maximum speed of 100Mbps in Lyon at the end of November 2012, and later on expanded its 4G network to include Montpellier and the La Defense agglomeration in Paris, while in March 2013, Marseille became the fourth location to witness LTE coverage. Throughout the second quarter of 2013, 4G services were launched in Lille, Toulouse and Strasbourg-Ville. The company announced that it will accelerate the LTE rollout in the second half of 2013 with the total number of cities with 4G network coverage set to reach 55 by the end of the year, including Nantes, Toulon, Grenoble, Rouen, Avignon, Montpellier, Saint-Etienne, Rennes, Metz, Nancy, Orleans, Clermont-Ferrand, Angers, Reims, Caen, Chambery, Amiens, Annecy, Annemasse and Besancon.