Thai-based dtac stepped up the rollout of a low-band network using newly acquired 700MHz spectrum, aiming to deploy 4,000 sites in Q1 after turning on 2,400 sites in the final quarter of 2020.
The operator obtained its 700MHz licence in late December 2020, and said the spectrum brings additional coverage indoors and in rural areas.
In addition to the expansion in the low-band spectrum range, the operator added 3,000 base stations on the 2.3GHz band in 2020 to take its total to 20,400 sites.
In a statement, dtac CEO Sharad Mehrotra said deployment of the 700MHz network “will significantly improve coverage and speed nationwide”, adding capacity increased three-times in 2020 after it upgraded its 2.3GHz network with 5G-ready massive MIMO technology and deployed more than 20,000 high-speed 4G TDD sites.
The operator introduced 5G services on the 700MHz band in parts of six major cities during 2020 and plans to expand in other high-traffic areas this year.
Mehrotra noted dtac also is deploying dynamic spectrum sharing on the 700MHz band to enable the use of both 5G and 4G services without bandwidth sharing.
Its LTE subscriber base of 12.2 million accounted for 64 per cent overall customers, it said.