Malaysia’s Maxis to invest RM2b on 3G

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Malaysia’s biggest mobile firm, Maxis Communications Bhd, will spend a total of RM2.2 billion over the next three years to expand its third generation (3G) network and wireless broadband Internet services. The company expects a break- even period of about three years.

Maxis aims to make broadband available to three quarters of all households by 2010. At the end of June, there were more than 650,000 broadband subscribers.

Chief executive officer Datuk Jamaludin Ibrahim said plans are to invest RM1.5 billion for the next three years, starting in 2007, to expand 3G coverage to more than 60 per cent of the population by 2009.

Currently, its 3G services are only available in the Klang Valley, Penang and Johor Baru. So far, RM650 million has been invested on 3G networks.

Maxis also plans to give existing Internet service providers a run for their money, with the launch of its own wireless broadband Internet services for home users.

It will invest RM700 million over the next three years to expand its wireless broadband Internet services – making it available to 60 per cent of Malaysians.

“With household broadband penetration standing at only 13 per cent today and being dominated by one provider, we believe there is room for a second, major national player like Maxis,” Jamaludin said at its wireless broadband services launch in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Maxis wireless Internet services are currently available in Klang Valley, and will be extended to Penang next month.

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