Lanka Business Online reports that fixed-wireless telephony and broadband operator Lanka Bell – a subsidiary of the Sri Lankan Distilleries Corporation group – is preparing to launch fourth-generation (4G) LTE services sometime after next March to keep up with competition. ‘Lanka Bell will launch a 4G LTE network in the next financial year, which will position Lanka Bell amongst the other next generation telecommunication service providers in the country,’ chairman Harry Jayawardene told shareholders of the holding company in its annual report. Lanka Bell has suffered losses in the face of declining fixed access use in Sri Lanka, while cellcos Dialog Axiata and Mobitel have launched LTE services (the former with both mobile and fixed-wireless LTE varieties), with Etisalat Lanka the next cellco poised to inaugurate a commercial 4G network. Lanka Bell’s fixed-wireless rival, Suntel, has been acquired by Dialog Axiata’s broadband division via which it operates a TD-LTE fixed-wireless broadband service.
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