Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC), operating under the LIME banner in the Cayman Islands, has announced plans to become the first operator to launch Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology in the country. According to a company’s press release, CWC will launch 4G services in the 2013/14 financial year, initially on Grand Cayman. The upgrade is the latest component of a programme of network upgrades across CWC’s pan-Caribbean business; it will enable customers to access services such as video calling, streaming of HD video clips and ultra-fast web browsing. LIME’s CEO Martin Roos said: ‘This is a huge investment in not only our network capability, which will bring great benefits to our customers, but also in Cayman. This shows our confidence in the Cayman market and our commitment to building a world class infrastructure.’
According to TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in July 2013 LIME Cayman won two of the three 700MHz spectrum blocks earmarked by telecoms regulator the Information and Communications Technology Authority (ICTA) for the provision of LTE services in the country. LIME secured the spectrum blocks after winning a ‘beauty contest’ against rival cellco Digicel; the cellco was granted 2×24MHz frequency blocks in the 700MHz band as follows: 2×12MHz paired blocks in the 704MHz-710MHz/734MHz-740MHz band, and 2×12MHz paired blocks in the 710MHz-716MHz/740-746MHz band.
In its application, LIME stated that the LTE network will provide coverage to 70% of the population by 30 November 2013, while the network footprint is set to increase to 90% of the population by the end of 2013. One month later (31 January 2014), the LTE coverage is expected to extend to 100% of the Grand Cayman population, although ‘there may be a few areas of the Sister Islands that might not be covered’, the telco noted.