Indonesian telecommunications provider PT Indosat (Indosat Ooredoo) has reaffirmed plans to phase out its 3G network as it shifts resources to develop 4G and 5G services in a rapidly evolving market.
According to the company sources, its 3G base transceiver station (BTS) count fell more than 22 percent annually to 35,000 units in the first half (H1) of this year while its 4G BTS count rose more than 30 percent to 69,000 units over the same period.
Local media reports quoted Indosat's chief operating officer, Vikram Sinha, as saying that ‘4G will become very relevant, and it will be the growth momentum for many months and years to come. But 3G, we want to slowly shut down and make sure that we move to 4G and 5G.’
"By phasing out 3G, the company could reallocate more spectrum bandwidth for 4G services in staying ahead of an expected growth in domestic demand for faster internet connection," he said.
Meanwhile, Indosat Ooredoo also recorded 60.3 million customers in H1 2021, an increase of 5.3% YoY. 4G data customers grew to 40 million, an increase of 29.5% YoY. Average Revenue per User (ARPU) increased by 8.2% YoY to IDR 34 thousand, driven mainly by robust growth in data traffic, which rose 40.2% YoY, helping to deliver 19% growth in 4G data revenue.
During Q2 2021, Indosat Ooredoo announced the launch of its first commercial 5G service in the city of Solo. 5G service is the next step in bringing world-class digital experiences to people in Indonesia. The launch in Solo established Indosat Ooredoo at the forefront of the 5G roll-out in Indonesia.