Bangladesh’s largest cellco by subscribers GrameenPhone yesterday launched commercial 3G services with coverage initially restricted to the Basundhara and Baridhara areas of Dhaka. By the end of October it aims to cover other areas of Dhaka, Chittagong, Gazipur and Narayangonj with the 3G network, as part of a national rollout, with the ambition of covering all seven divisional headquarter cities, and all 64 district (zila) towns across the country by the end of March 2014. Yesterday GrameenPhone launched three types of 3G packages in two data speed tiers, with more packages promised in the near future. A 512kbps monthly package costs BDT400 (USD5.08) with 2GB of data; a ‘Smart Plan’ for smartphone users comprising unlimited data (fair usage policy applying after 1.5GB), voice minutes, SMS and MMS costs BDT800; and a heavy users’ unlimited monthly plan (fair usage policy after 8GB) costs BDT950. The same three packages with a speed limit of 1Mbps cost BDT700, BDT1,100 and BDT1,250 respectively. Video calls to other 3G-enabled GrameenPhone numbers are charged at BDT1.20 per minute on a ten-second pulse, while video calls to other networks will be possible in due course.
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