Digicel rebuts 4G claims

With regard to LIME’s announcement that it will be the first to launch “4G” across the Caribbean – I would like to take this opportunity to clear up a few important points.

The motivation for this is to inform consumers and businesses of the facts – and help them cut through some of the grossly misleading marketing messages LIME has put out.

LIME said it is “first” to launch 4G in the region – not the case.

The truth is LIME will use what is referred to as HSPA+ technology for the services it is calling 4G but it is not the first to deploy this technology in the region.

Digicel launched 4G (HSPA+) technology on 23 July, 2010, in Bermuda and the French West Indies last year (under the banner 3G+). HSPA+ was previously classified by the International Telecommunication Union as 3G+. HSPA+ technology potentially delivers speeds up to five times faster than traditional 3G technologies.

So, it is true to say that Digicel already delivers networks in the Caribbean using HSPA+ technology (what LIME is now calling 4G). In addition Digicel has launched WiMAX networks (also classified as 4G technologies by the ITU) in the Caribbean (and specifically in the Cayman Islands and Jamaica) and indeed was the “first” to do so.

Since December of last year, customers can benefit from true mobile broadband and 4G download speeds. Digicel initially launched 4G in Grand Cayman with devices geared at the residential market and will soon be adding devices over the coming months to make the product more mobile. Digicel’s customers in Cayman do not need to wait until September to avail of the benefits of 4G; they can do so by visiting any of the Digicel stores right now.

Digicel is also gearing up to launch HSPA+ technology across the Dutch Caribbean in a matter of weeks, intends to roll out HSPA+ in Jamaica (once the Claro acquisition is approved) and will steadily bring this to other markets in the near future. The Cayman Islands is an extremely important market for Digicel and consequently will be an integral part of Digicel’s regional rollout plans of 4G HSPA+ mobile services.

Digicel prides itself on delivering the best value, best service and best network to customers across the globe. That is why we continue to be the first to deliver the best and most innovative technologies to customers having already invested over US$85 million in rolling out HSPA+ and WiMAX services across the region and why we continue to ensure that we are on the side of the customer at all times and in everything we do.

Victor Corcoran

Chief executive officer

Digicel (Cayman) Limited