Pakistan Telecommunications Mobile Ltd (PTML), which operates under the Ufone banner, has become the first operator in Pakistan to commercially launch 3G services, beating rivals Mobilink, Telenor Pakistan and China Mobile Pakistan (CMPak/Zong). Ufone’s new service is available in Lahore, Islamabad, Karachi and Rawalpindi, whilst the cellco has extended its free trial to the cities of Faisalabad and Peshawar. Setting the pace in terms of tariffs, Ufone’s post-paid options include either 1GB or 3GB of data, at speeds of 256kbps, 512kbps or 3Mbps and range in price from PKR200 (USD2) per month (256kbps/1GB) to PKR1,200 (3Mbps/3GB). Pre-paid offerings meanwhile feature more options, including 1Mbps tariffs, vouchers valid from a ‘half-day’ (20 hours), to 30 days and data caps as low as 40MB. Ufone’s cheapest pre-paid tariff costs PKR5 and offers 50MB of data at 256kbps usable between 1:00am and 9:00pm.
In related news, Pro Pakistani writes that Warid Telecom has successfully completed trials of Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology, achieving speeds of 35.5Mbps and 8.52Mbps downlink/uplink. The cellco, which plans to use its existing licence to launch 4G services after it elected not to take part in the recent spectrum auction, also announced in a press release that it has committed to invest close to USD400 million in the country’s infrastructure and economy.