The Media Guru
Jun 21, 2012



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In a publicity stunt worthy of a Michael Bay James Bond movie, Orange Mauritius officially launched 4G LTE in Mauritius.

 

emtel4G_promoL

But wait, didn’t Emtel launch 4G a month ago? Actually, that was a soft launch, not a commercial launch. Emtel will release their 4G sticks and offers next month.

 

So what’s 4G?

4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) is the successor to the 3G (UMTS) & 3.5G (HSPA) networks, with speeds of up to 300Mbps download and 75Mbps upload.

Your existing 3G/3.5G devices are not compatible with 4G. It will only work with devices equipped with 4G LTE antennas.

Like the iPad 3, Lumia 900 LTE, HTC Evo 4G or Galaxy SIII LTE? Unfortunately, these devices will work only in the US. The reason is that the US uses different 4G LTE frequency spectrum bands than the rest of the world.

In the US, 4G LTE uses 700, 800, 1700 & 1900 MHz. The EU uses 800, 1800 & 2600 MHz. Because Mauritius follows the same bands as the EU, only LTE devices compatible with EU bands will work.

Update: I've been informed by @Sailesh28 that Orange Mauritius supports the 1800MHz band alone.

As it stands, the following devices are compatible with Orange’s network:

 

Orange 4G

Orange_4G

Orange will be providing 4G Internet Everywhere packages with speeds of up to 100Mbps. The dongle used is the Huawei E398, which supports 3G/HSPA/4G & has a microSD slot.

Currently, only Port Louis & Bagatelle have 4G coverage. If you move out of these regions, the connection will fall back to 3G (75% island coverage) & then EDGE.

Price of USB modem – Rs 8000 (VAT included)

The 4G offer is only available with the 5GB package at Rs 1300 (valid for 30 days) & Rs 3/MB excess.

 

& here are the videos of the Spiderman Alain Robert climbing the 110m Telecom Tower with this “bare hands.”

 

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Yashvin Awootar said...

Worthless launch.

Inf said...

For a small island like Mauritius, it's a real miracle that the two main mobile providers are launching LTE. This is amazing! Even 75% 3G coverage is very good, considering the topography of the island. And now with BTL launching FTTH, we should really be grateful to (eventually) be able to get access to these technologies so fast.

Akhil Ramlugun said...

"Just like 3G, it will only work with devices equipped with 4G LTE antennas."

Do you mean using 3G requires 4G antennas?

And about the incompatibility of the 4G in some devices, are you sure? I mean, why would the manufacturers restrict it to the American market only. Nokia, HTC and Samsung are not even American brands. They must surely have released variants of their 4G devices for the other markets. Considering Mauritius itself, isn't any organisation (ICTA I guess) responsible for ensuring the compliance of the 4G signal provided by the mobile network operators with the 4G devices already being marketed (or the other way round: ensuring the compliance of to-be-marketed devices to the signal of the MNOs).

BTW, how to figure out if a Samsung Galaxy Nexus device is the HSPA+ version or the LTE version?

Yashvin Awootar said...

I think that Carrotmadman6 has talked about these technical aspects. He's our local tech reviewer :-)

carrotmadman6 said...

"Do you mean using 3G requires 4G antennas?"
I may have put it wrongly. What I meant was that when 3G was introduced 8 years, you needed handsets equipped with 3G antennas to use it. & same for 4G.
I'll correct that sentence.



The frequency spectrum is allocated by ICTA.
http://www.icta.mu/images/spectrum.jpg

How I know whether Mauritius is using US or EU bands?
Through the modem specs - http://www.huaweimodems.com/E398.htm
The Huawei E398 supports mainly the EU bands - 1800/2600 MHz.
700/800 MHz, which used in the US, are not supported.
Furthermore, if you look at the spectrum allocation, the 700/800 Mhz is not available for mobile. That's probably because the ICTA aligns itself with the EU standards.



Quoting Wikipedia - "In North America, 700/ 800 and 1700/ 1900 MHz are planned to be used;
800, 1800, 2600 MHz in Europe; 1800 and 2600 MHz in Asia; and 1800 MHz
in Australia."

I don't know which bands Orange/Emtel are using, but the common denominator seems to be the 1800/2600 MHz. I scoured the Internet & found only these 3 devices to be compatible with those bands.
I haven't included the HTC Titan 4G & the HTC Velocity 4G, which only work on the 1800 MHz band.



"Nokia, HTC and Samsung are not even American brands. They must surely
have released variants of their 4G devices for the other markets."

They haven't. The Lumia 900 was released with LTE in US. The international version supports only HSPA+ (21Mbps). Similar story with the Galaxy SIII, the international version is HSPA+.



"BTW, how to figure out if a Samsung Galaxy Nexus device is the HSPA+ version or the LTE version?"
You'll have to look at the specs. It must mention whether it's HSPA+ or LTE accompanied by the supported bands.

Nayar said...

Who cares!? We can't even enjoy GPRS connectivity without thinking about the bills getting blown.

I'd be more than happy if i'd get an unlimited GPRS plan (48kbps) on the go rather than a connection speed on 10001 Mbps in which you can use for 1 minute and your pocket gets blown :@ 

carrotmadman6 said...

4G is not everyone. It is for people who can afford getting their pockets blown - businessmen! :)

Nayar said...

Yeah. 99.9% of the population are excited for the fortunate 1% who would be able to afford it. :-/

Wonder when a good news will come for the population :fingerscrossed: :S

yadhav13 said...

Orange Mauritius is putting the cart before the horse. Their current offers themselves are not value for money. It seems that the 100 Mbps speed for the 4G package is a gimmick because it's what the technology can support and not what MT is bound to provide. For instance, the current 3G+ offer does not really provide the maximum speed which it supports. I'll be happier when they buy more bandwidth to harness the huge profit and to satisfy their growing number of subscribers.

Timo said...

Their 3G dongles never gave me download speeds exceeding 25KB/s. Frequent disconnections and yes, loads of frustrating calls to MT.

Sun said...

Which tells you that they have the bandwidth.. but still give a maximum of 4mb to homeusers at an insane price. Chez Orange, kass zot kone cocain.

M3rvin27 said...

Carrot do you know the bandwidth of 3G here? thanks .. 

want to know if an american variant of the SIII or Note will work here. thanks.

does the international variant for e.g. the S III I9300 4G compatible? i doubt it as most 4G are being sold with data plans.



the S1717 (american variant of the S III has 4G at 700 & 1700 mhz.

thanks 

carrotmadman6 said...

 3G - 384kbps. 3.5G - up to 7.2Mbps (depends on the region). 4G - 100Mbps.

I don't think Samsung have launched the international SIII 4G yet.

& the American 4G variant doesn't support Mauritius 4G bands (1800Mhz).

Inasecretland said...

Prix modem la mari trangler dimun c'a. tout le tmp Orange ti tire manzer Morisien. Li donn toi 1 connexion soi disan 512 K  to bizin attane 1 an avant 1 video Youtube buffer

TheGeek said...

C'est bien jolie de lancer la 4G à Maurice, de dire quelle peut aller jusqu'à 100Mbps mais quand est-il réellement ?  Il y a je pense une différence entre la théorie et la pratique. 

Moi qui est un téléphone compatible 3G+ (donc comme dit plus haut, allant jusqu'à 7,2Mbps), j'arrive que rarement à dépasser 100Kb/s avec mon téléphone portable, ayant la plupart du temps entre 30 et 60Kb/s.

Je suis donc assez septique quand au débit que fournit actuellement la 4G à Maurice ...

carrotmadman6 said...

Ca doit tourner entre les 10-20Mbps (théoriquement). :)

TheGeek said...

En théorie oui mais dans la pratique, je doute fort qu'on atteignent réellement un tel débit.

diyaanush said...

will the samsung galaxy note 3 lte version compatible in mauritius

Ryan Fitzgerald said...

Was as Emtel today where thay told me that my iPhone 5S model A1533 was not compatible with Emtel's 4G network. I don't understand cause I checked on the net and it supports LTE Band 3 (1800 MHz) Can someone correct me if I'm wrong? Or approve me if I'm right?

carrotmadman6 said...

Yeah, the 5S A1533 supports 4G here, but it's not "officially" supported by Apple on Emtel.
Basically you have to do some .plist editing to add support for Emtel....
Similar to this - http://leimobile.com/how-to-enable-lte-on-iphone-5-for-t-mobile/

Ryan Fitzgerald said...

So the culprit is Apple. I saw they are going to get fined for doing this in Belgium. I guess they do it all aroung the world. saw posts of people complaining. Thats horrible..make us pay a fortune for iPhones and just block network providers. What a shame Apple... dont get me wrong I love Apple products but seriously these guys not only want all the money but also all the power.. thy do immoral things at times. Thank god Google created Android to compete or they would have dominated the world. And one thing I know is that Google is more moral, they do good.

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