CDMA operator Perfectum Mobile has launched 3G services in the Uzbek capital Tashkent through the deployment of an EV-DO Rev. A network, and is gradually extending the new infrastructure through the region. The upgrade boosted maximum download speeds to 3.1Mbps from the 153kbps available over its CDMA2000 1x platform. Part-owned by fixed line incumbent Uzbektelekom, Perfectum is the smallest of Uzbekistan’s wireless providers, representing less than 1% of the market at the end of March 2014 according to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database. Perfectum played down the upgrade, explaining that subscribers would need to change their handset to make use of the new system and warning that the coverage area of the EV-DO system might be different from its basic CDMA2000 1x footprint.
In related news, rival wireless provider Beeline, which is backed by Russian-owned Vimpelcom, has begun work on repairing a base station in the Marhamat district of Andijan region, after it was damaged by fire. Beeline’s technical director Denis Kotlyarenko noted that ‘the consequences of the fire [have been] felt by even those residents of nearby districts, who had not heard about it.’ The official went on to explain: ‘The fact is that the base station…was a hub station, so that its outage disconnected more than twenty other stations. Of course, all possible resources were immediately mobilised and we are making great efforts to resume operation of the equipment.’