Indonesia-based mobile operator XL Axiata targeted expansion of its 4G coverage to 95 per cent of the population by end-2019, reaching 440 cities with 135,000 base stations.
In a statement, XL Axiata said it deployed 19,000 base stations in the first half of the year, most located outside the country’s most populous island of Java, taking LTE coverage to about 90 per cent and covering 408 cities.
President director Dian Siswarini said its focus on coverage outside of Java resulted in a sharp jump in data traffic in the region, with revenue benefitting.
She said data traffic over the past two years in Java increased more than five-times, with a three-fold lift outside Java, which increased the urgency for it to use fibre to connect base stations. It expects 50 per cent of its sites to be connected by fibre by the end of 2019 and about 70 per cent by the end of 2020.
It said revenue from data services increased 29 per cent year-on-year in H1, accounting for 87 per cent of total service revenue during the January to June period.
In March the operator selected Ericsson to supply a 5G-ready transport network over the next three years.
GSMA Intelligence data showed the operator had a 17 per cent market share by subscribers in Q2, matching Indosat Ooredoo’s share.