Celcom has successfully deployed a new mobile tower at Kampung Bukit Petai 7 in Tanah Merah, Kelantan which will provide a strong 4G coverage for the village. The new tower addresses the mobile connectivity issues faced by Nurlieda Khaleeda who had to study in a tent on top of a hill just to get a good mobile reception.
It was reported that the student used to make a 3 km trip to the nearest town just to get a good connection. However, due to the CMCO in Kelantan, she couldn’t go out and her father had to set up a tent on top of a 20-metre hill so that she could continue studying. After the news was reported, Celcom had visited her village to look into possible solutions for the area.
The new mobile tower was erected in the village under 3 weeks which was made possible with the support from the Malaysia Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) and the cooperation of local authorities to speed up the required approvals for erecting a new tower infrastructure. Nurlieda has also confirmed that her mobile reception has been improved after the new tower was deployed.
During the recent JENDELA quarterly update, MCMC Chairman, Dr Fadhlullah Suhaimi, said the village needed new infrastructure and most users in the area are Celcom customers. To address the connectivity concerns for the area, Celcom has stepped up to expedite their Radio Access Network (RAN) investments to set up a new tower as part of its ongoing network improvement exercise.
As announced earlier this month, Celcom aims to upgrade a total of 4,700 network sites throughout Malaysia by February 2021 and 51% of these sites are located in rural areas. In addition, the blue telco also aims to optimise an additional 3,600 network sites by August 2021 to increase network capacity so that customers can enjoy better voice and video quality.
Apart from Kampung Bukit Petai 7, Celcom has also recently performed 4G network upgrades at Kampung Bukit Pampong in Raub, Pahang. This will improve 4G coverage and quality for Kampung Bukit Pampong residents.
For Nurlieda and Veveonah Mosibin’s situation, it is fortunate that telcos are able to deploy or upgrade towers quickly in their area. However, for those who are living in sparsely populated areas that lacked even basic infrastructure, it might take a longer time.
In underserved areas where 4G towers are not feasible, satellite connectivity is seen as a viable alternative to provide faster internet access that can be deployed in a few days. Connectme Now by MEASAT, can deploy satellite-powered WiFi connectivity at zero cost and users can get access by purchasing prepaid reloads. They were recently engaged by a Sabah state-backed company to deploy satellite broadband as part of its CSR project to improve connectivity for Kampung Gusi, Ranau in Sabah.