CAT delays CDMA shutdown to April 26
CAT Telecom will switch off its CDMA (code division multiple access) cellular networks in 51 provinces on April 26 instead of in March, according to a decision by its board yesterday.
Chief executive officer Kittisak Sriprasert said the board wanted to give the state agency more time to encourage its CDMA subscribers to migrate to its third-generation network on the 850-megahertz spectrum.
CAT has to coordinate with True Corp, which oversees a separate CDMA network in 25 provinces with 40,000 subscribers, as both networks have to be closed at the same time.
The board also approved Bt150 million for CAT to maintain the CDMA service until it is ended.
Recently Kittisak said CAT would spend Bt200 million to try to persuade the 120,000 subscribers of its CDMA cellular service to move to its 3G-850MHz service.
The decision to shut down the CDMA network in 51 provinces makes financial sense as CAT runs Bt70 million a month in maintenance costs for the service.
CAT will also coordinate with the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission, which has been concerned about the possible impact on CDMA customers after the service is cancelled.
The attempt to migrate CDMA customers to the 850MHz network would give CAT experience to deal with the expirations in September of the concessions it granted to TrueMove and Digital Phone Co, Kittisak added.
TrueMove has 17 million subscribers and DPC has 80,000.