Internet Radio

GT&T sounds impatience with no spectrum for 3G network

GT&T’s Chief Executive Officer, Rada Krishna Sharma

Even as the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) increased its Internet speed in several areas of the country, the telecommunications provider on Wednesday appeared increasingly impatient with being unable to offer higher data speeds on mobile devices.

“We are a company that is a regulated company and obviously this can’t be an indefinite wait but we are hoping the process will not continue indefinitely,” said GT&T’s Chief Executive Officer, Rada Krishna Sharma. “Our discussions are continuous but not indefinite,” he added.

Sharma restated that the major humbug to mobile service providers was the failure so far by the National Frequency Management Unit (NFMU) to allocate the required frequencies to facilitate 3G and higher speeds on mobile networks.

He was at the time speaking at the GT&T’s launch of the maximum of 10 megabits per second DSL data subscription being offered to subscribers.

The phone and data service provider has been complaining that Guyana is believed to be the only country in the Caribbean that is lagging behind in introducing 3G. “Naturally, we can’t do this indefinitely. All other Caribbean territories, neighbours  and citizens of other Caricom countries are experiencing 3G,” he said.

Should approval be granted, he said GT&T would introduce 3G service soonest. “Should we get appropriate spectrum, in the shortest possible time you will have that experience. We have the capability, the capacity,” he said.

Asked whether the company has set itself a time-frame by which it would make a decision, he said “we are exploring every option to break this impasse.”

Sharma also said the company would be reviewing its policy to determine whether Voice Over Internet telephony services such as Skype, WhatsApp and MagicJack should be blocked from making or receiving phone calls. “We will now have to re-examine our policies as it relates to VOIP. I don’t want to say that we are going to block VOIP. What I can say is that we have to re-examine the policies to deal with these over-the-top solutions.  I would not want to give with one hand and take with the other hand but we would have to come up with a policy scenario,” he said.

GT&T is, meanwhile, exploring the possibility of getting into the Cable TV networks.