Croatia’s T-Hrvatski Telekom (T-HT) today launched the country’s first commercial Long Term Evolution (LTE) 4G mobile broadband network, covering four major cities, Zagreb, Rijeka, Osijek and Split. The company, which offers mobile services under the T-Mobile brand, plans to expand the LTE network to other urban areas in Croatia during this year. T-HT says that its new 4G network is capable of mobile data rates up to a theoretical 173Mbps downlink and 58Mbps uplink, or around ten times faster than existing HSPA-based services, and is aimed at users wanting to access the most data-intensive multimedia content. Bozidar Poldrugac, T-HT’s chief technical officer, stated the company’s motivation for introducing the new technology: ‘LTE… will soon become a standard in mobile communications, especially if we consider the fact that the volume of data traffic in mobile networks will rise by more than 60% in the next couple of years.’ The commercial launch follows T-HT’s live demonstration of LTE in 2010 and test services offered to a limited user base in 2011 in Zagreb, Rijeka and Split.
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