Thailand's True Move plans to launch LTE services over its new 1800-MHz spectrum next week in an attempt to get ahead of rival AIS.
The operator will switch on LTE over the 1800-MHz band to complement its existing 2100-MHz LTE network, which launched two years ago, the Bangkok Postreported.
AIS, which won the second of two 15 MHz LTE licenses during last month's marathon auction, has indicated it will commence services in mid-December. Unlike with True Move, this will be AIS' first foray into the LTE segment.
True Move plans to use the fact that it has a combined 25 MHz of LTE spectrum - compared to 15 MHz for AIS - as a competitive differentiator.
Meanwhile, as a condition of receiving its LTE license, True Corp will be required to switch off its 2G network on the 1800-MHz band after midnight tonight local time. The company only has around 43,000 customers still using 2G over the network, but plans to transfer them to the new 4G network.
True bid 39.79 billion baht ($1.11 billion) for the 1800-MHz 4G license, compared to 40.98 billion baht for AIS. The auction terms stipulate payment in stages, with the full amount due within three years.