Swiss operators consider sharing LTE network

The likely cost of deploying LTE networks has prompted two mobile operators in Switzerland to consider sharing the required Capex and access. The CEO of Sunrise, the country's second largest operator with over two million subscribers, has approached Switzerland's third and smallest operator, Orange, which has commented that such cooperation is ‘conceivable'.

According to Sunrise, the aim of the cooperation between the two smaller networks (Swisscom is the largest with 5.5 million customers) would be to reduce overall Capex on the network deployment. It has been estimated by ComCom, the Swiss telecoms regulator, that the network upgrade costs would amount to between 2 to 3 billion Swiss Francs (US$1.8 billion-US$2.7 billion).

The president of ComCom, Marc Furrer, said that he would be willing to facilitate cooperation between Sunrise and Orange, not only for future networks but also for merging their current mobile networks.

However, while supporting the idea of Sunrise and Orange sharing networks, ComCom has indicated that Swisscom would be expected to upgrade its network on its own.

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