Bangladeshi wireless broadband operator Ollo will launch a long-awaited 4G LTE-based internet service next month, in Jessore, Barisal, Sylhet, Mymensingh and Moulvibazar, whilst a further launch in the capital Dhaka is potentially lined up for January 2016, according to Igor Grakovich, CEO of parent/licensee company Bangladesh Internet Exchange Ltd (BIEL), quoted by local newspaper the Daily Star. Network rollouts in certain Dhaka districts, including Gopalganj, are nearing completion, while LTE services in Chittagong are expected to follow later in 2016, the CEO added. TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database notes that Ollo/BIEL received a licence permitting LTE (data-only) services in November 2013, before signing a contract with Chinese technology giant ZTE for an LTE network rollout in September 2014 and outlining plans to cover all seven Bangladeshi divisional headquarter cities and 20 other major district cities in a first phase.
Explaining the delays, Ollo officials this month claimed that it has been unable to provide commercial LTE services due to ‘interference in signal from other operators’, a problem which the company says it has been working to solve with regulatory help. ‘We have faced plenty of problems, but now we are on the verge of rolling out the LTE service,’ Mr Grakovich told the Star. The Bangladeshi-Russian ISP venture claims that its LTE network will reach connection speeds of 150Mbps. Ollo’s existing WiMAX-type wireless broadband network covers major districts of Dhaka including Uttara, Gulshan, Banani, Mohakhali, Dhanmondi, Motijheel and its surrounding areas.