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January 13, 2009

Thai mobile operator picks Nokia Siemens, Huawei for 3G network
Thailand's Total Access Communication Plc has selected Nokia Siemens Networks and China's Huawei Technologies to supply gear for a 3G network.

The two gear makers will supply equipment to upgrade TAC's existing network so that it can offer third generation mobile phone services, Reuters quoted a company official as saying. She did not give a figure for the deal.

TAC, controlled by Norway's Telenor, said late last year it planned to spend 5 billion baht ($144 million) to upgrade its systems for 3G services, expected to be launched by the second quarter of this year.

Analysts said regulatory issues could delay the planned launch, but that should not have a negative impact on the company's operations.

Investing in 3G on existing networks is one option for operators, but they are also keen to bid for 3G licences on a new 2.1 GHz frequency to be issued by industry regulators later this year.

TAC has about 30 percent of Thailand's mobile phone market. Its rivals are market leader Advanced Info Service and number three True Move, a subsidiary of True Corp.

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