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Vinaphone Tops Viettel's 4G Announcement

At long last, 4G is coming to Vietnam, and the battle for customers is heating up among the country's major telecommunications players.

Last week, Viettel announced its plan to launch 4G service next month, installing 12,000 brand-new 4G base transceiver stations (BTS) across the country to ensure quality coverage.

According to Vietnam Net, things have been running smoothly for the telecommunications giant. Contracts are signed, equipment is on its way and the installation of these new services will begin soon.

However, no sooner had Viettel shared its 4G aspirations with the public than Vinaphone revealed a scheme of its own, which is set to roll out in November. The kicker? Where Viettel will require 4G users to purchase a new SIM for the service, Vinaphone will allow 3G customers to switch over without purchasing another SIM card.

A senior executive from Vinaphone also told Zing that the cost of its 4G service will be comparable to 3G, signaling competition among the country's telecommunications giants.

Meanwhile, Mobifone, the third player in Vietnam's telecom trifecta, has stayed mum on the 4G front. But given its status in the national market, experts believe that a Mobifone announcement is coming soon.

Until then, all this is good news for consumers, who can look forward to affordable prices as well as increased network coverage as a result of the 4G push.

That 4G is coming to Vietnam at all this year is a welcome surprise, as telecom companies and government officials had previously delayed the launch until 2016.

While there are still lingering concerns about whether demand for 4G would be high enough to warrant the upgrade, it appears the big three – Viettel, Vinaphone and Mobifone – have changed their mind about the world's fastest mobile network.


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