R.K.Radhakrishnan

CHENNAI: Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited will launch full-fledged third generation mobile telephone services (3G) here by mid-October.

Major district headquarters in the State, beginning with Coimbatore, will be covered by end-November, said D.Varadharajan, Chief General Manager of BSNL (Tamilnadu Circle).

BSNL had a nation-wide commercial launch of the 3G services on February 27.

Speaking to The Hindu, Mr.Varadharajan said the State had most of the facilities in place. Additional towers were being installed and training of personnel was almost complete.

Private mobile operators will take a year more before they launch the services.

The first requirement for gaining access to the high quality voice services along with high speed data and video services is a 3G-enabled handset and a 3G SIM card. When the services were rolled out in 11 cities, BSNL had fixed SIM fee at Rs. 300. This rate structure will continue. As of now, in the 11 cities, BSNL has voice-based pre-paid plans ranging between Rs. 350 and Rs. 1,350, while subscribers who opt for the post-paid model will pay between Rs. 500 and Rs. 2,500 per month. For data services, BSNL will charge additionally. Across the country, this costs between Rs. 250 and Rs. 3,001.

More In: Today's Paper