A range of packages announced.
Over the weekend the Lebanese Telecoms Minister Nicolas Sehnaoui announced the launch of the new 3G service, reported Daily Star. Ranked as one of the slowest countries in the world by speedtest.net this news comes with great optimism as the two state run telecom operators in Lebanon, Alfa and MTC, will be giving 500MB of data for $19 per month, starting from 1st November. Other package prices announced by the Sehnaoui include $10 for 100MB and $60 for 2GB.
Telecommunications Minister Nicolas Sehnaoui draws the winning students’ names during a press conference in Beirut. (Mohammad Azakir/The Daily Star)
“It’s good news that we’re launching this service, and the administration should be given credit. But it’s not being done in the best environment,” said Riad Bahsoun, an expert at the International Telecommunications Union, the United Nations agency for information and communications technology. “The efficiency of 3G very much relies on the backbone of bandwidth. We’ll need three to four years before it’s completely operational.”
For now only the major cities like Beirut, Tripoli, Saida, etc. will be covered, with the rest of the country getting coverage by the end of next year. The initial price plan also seems to be a deterrent for most users in order to avoid overwhelming the somewhat limited capacity of the broadband infrastructure in Lebanon. Mr. Sehnaoui also said that 4G service, including fiber optics boradband will be available starting Summer 2012.