Mobile operator Claro, a unit of Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim’s América Móvil, said yesterday it would invest US$2.7 billion in its Argentine operations over the next five years.
Underinvestment in the country’s telecoms industry means network reception can be patchy even in the heart of downtown Buenos Aires, but mobile operators are now scrambling to play catch-up after officials paved the way for the arrival of fourth-generation mobile technology, known as 4G, by auctioning large amounts of radiospectrum in a call for tenders which was won by Argentina’s biggest phone operators.
“The project is seeking to improve the current 3G network, to expand the network of fiber optic and introduce the 4G network,” the company said in a statement.
Claro has already brought US$281 million into the country to pay for the radiospectrum it won during last year’s tender.
The company is following on the footsteps of Telecom’s Personal and Telefónica’s Movistar, which have already started investing on 4G infrastructure.
Movistar’s 4G technology, which allows users to surf the web faster and opens the door for services which require higher data transmission such as video on demand, is already available in the country since December 22, but their users need to replace their current chips and have an “LTE-compatible” phone.
Date: February 26, 2015