Vodafone in pole position to extend its 4.5g network after acquiring largest spectrum holding

'This means that we can continue to connect more people, provide deeper indoor coverage for mobile data users, offer faster speeds and ultimately provide cutting-edge products to our customers' says Chief Technology Officer

Engineer at the base of a communication tower
Engineer at the base of a communication tower

Vodafone Malta is in pole position to extend its 4.5G network and ramp up speeds in the lead-up to a future 5G rollout, after acquiring the largest spectrum holding.  

Vodafone welcomes the Malta Communications Authority’s recent decision to award licenses for spectrum in the 800 MHz and 2.6 GHz spectrum bands in Malta. Spectrum is the most critical strategic asset for any mobile operator’s business and, quite simply, relates to a range of radio frequencies allocated to the mobile industry for communication over the airwaves.

Vodafone Malta has acquired a total of 105Mhz unpaired spectrum, across both the 800Mhz and the 2.6Ghz bands, the largest allocation out of that given to the three mobile operators.

“This means that we can continue to connect more people, provide deeper indoor coverage for mobile data users, offer faster speeds and ultimately provide cutting-edge products to our customers. Therefore, the recent MCA decision will support Vodafone Supernet to offer the best experience for our customers in Malta,” Chief Technology Officer Sheila Kavanagh explained.

“Having acquired the best possible spectrum combinations will also allow us to take advantage of some very interesting future leading edge capabilities and technologies on both our current 4.5G network and on a future 5G network.”

Last summer, Vodafone was first to launch its unique 4.5G network, which continues to be up to 60% faster than any other mobile network in Malta. Last October, the company also showcased the foundations for 5G technology by trialling breakthrough gigabit speeds on its mobile network – meaning that a 90 minute full-HD movie can be downloaded in a little over 30 seconds.

5G technology also promises to open up new, exciting possibilities for businesses, as it is uniquely suited to handle the growing connectivity needs of the Internet of Things (IoT), thanks to its low latency. The technology promises to usher in the next era of immersive experiences with faster, more uniform data rates at lower latency, thus enabling a host of machine-to-machine applications, such as vehicles benefitting from information received from roadside sensors as well as other vehicles.

As IoT-enabled devices start to play a larger role in daily life, 5G will offer the ability to connect on a massive scale, enabling embedded sensors and devices in virtually everything, from domestic devices such as appliances, light bulbs, climate control devices and digital displays to wearables of all kinds, which can for instance help transform elderly care.

The new spectrum allocation will pave the way for this and more.

“On top of this, we are also delighted to announce that, for the third time over the past few years, Vodafone has been independently certified by P3 as the best mobile network in Malta,” Ms Kavanagh said.

The recent P3 network benchmark exercise was run over 10 days with extensive data and voice sample testing across all three operators to independently determine the best network. Vodafone scored the highest result with a score of 868, with the next nearest competitors scoring 810 and 395 respectively, positioning Vodafone as a clear leader in the market.

Vodafone Supernet not only offers customers the best network in Malta but provides the most extensive global reach when travelling, with 4G roaming in over 120 countries.

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