Read this article to learn:
- The aims of edotco’s High Speed Mobility Solution project
- The scale, design, and benefits of the project
- edotco’s growth plans for its pan-Asian footprint
- The increasing focus on fibre in the tower industry
edotco Malaysia recently launched an innovative new mobility solution in Cyberjaya, also known as the “Silicon Valley” of Malaysia, to promote the development of nationwide high speed mobile infrastructure. The project will make Cyberjaya the first community in Malaysia able to offer high-speed connectivity quickly, and at a lower cost.
Chief executive officer Suresh Sidhu announced during the launch that the high speed mobility is part of edotco’s plans to create next generation shared telecoms infrastructure across Malaysia. Sidhu also pointed out that edotco’s solutions bear in mind the needs of “the entire eco-system: MNOs, Governments, regulators, end-users and communities.”
The project, in which edotco has invested approximately RM5mn (US$1.2mn), will consist of twenty-two sites when finished. Currently installation is approximately 40% to 50% completed and should be done by the end of June or July. Linked with a fibre network and common antennae and towers, the solution will offer considerable benefits to network operators of every type. The common infrastructure allows smooth and quick integration with the network, and enhanced capacity and coverage, with the BTS Hotel solution aggregating fixed and wireless traffic. Operators are not required to invest in microwave equipment for backhaul, providing a more cost-effective solution with savings of 35% versus deployment on standard sites.
In addition to this, the infrastructure has been designed with aesthetics in mind to blend in with the surrounding skyline in space-constrained areas. Beyond the current high speed connectivity and 4G LTE that the network provides, it will also be able to support other future mobile network technology, according to Sidhu, and “this implementation will raise Cyberjaya to another level as a fully connected economic hub in Malaysia.”
edotco’s footprint and tower count
edotco’s High Speed Mobility Solution site is being deployed in partnership with Setia Haruman, the master developer of Cyberjaya, and its subsidiary, Setia Haruman Technology, which owns the citywide fibre network connecting all buildings and infrastructure. At the launch, Mohd Ali from MCMC announced that as “Malaysia progresses towards its goal of achieving developed nation status by year 2020, digital economy is a key driver to boost development and international competitiveness. The High Speed Mobility Solution rollout with Setia Haruman will be a game changer for the nation’s tech hub, Cyberjaya and this is just the beginning of its many remarkable firsts as we move from an era of creating digital access to one of nurturing digital natives.”
Once the project is complete in Cyberjaya, edotco has plans to launch similar projects in other locations across the country over the next two to three years
Once the project is complete in Cyberjaya, edotco has plans to launch similar projects in other locations across the country over the next two to three years, with Johor being the next target for expansion of the network. This project is just one part of edotco’s overall plans for growth in Malaysia and across its regional footprint in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Pakistan, and Myanmar. Up to 2,000 towers are planned to be deployed across the whole footprint in 2016, 300 of which will be built in Malaysia alone. This is a strong increase from the 1,700 deployed across all six countries in 2015. edotco presently has 16,000 towers in total across its footprint, 3,600 of which are located in Malaysia.
Fibre solutions are beginning to play an ever more important part in the towerco business model as the industry makes the first steps towards providing end-to-end services from tower to network. The High Speed Mobility Solution marks the first project of this kind in Malaysia, and in neighbouring Indonesia, towercos have been acquiring fibre assets to increase their capabilities. Protelindo acquired iForte in mid-2015, and STP acquired a company named Bit which also owned fibre assets. It remains to be seen how quickly this model will spread across the industry, and how far towercos will go in terms of offerings and business models. With fibre acquisitions appearing more frequently, there is also talk of towercos getting involved in active infrastructure, and even submarine cables in some cases.