3G & EVDO~Nepal Telecom;Kathmandu,Nepal

Recently Nepalese Telecom Giant NTC added one more feather to its caps with some exciting new services. These new value added services include 3G (Third Generation Mobile Service) and EVDO (Evolution Data Optimization). Since the initiation of these two services, there has been a lot of inquires running in the mindset of common people. For the very set of people who haven’t been able to garner all the information regarding these two services, I have gathered all the important information that would come handy to all those who are new to these two technologies.

3G

3G is a GSM based technology while EVDO is a CDMA based. Both deliver High Speed Internet services among others. While India has just started its bidding process for 3G spectrum, we should be proud that Nepal has already launched this service successfully. But it should be noted that EVDO was launched in India prior to Nepal.

There are lots of technical and technological words that we need to be familiar with, inorder to understand what these two technologies are all about. But here we have tried to put everything in as simple form as we can, so we have tried best not to make use of these terms and extensions.

Before 3G, Nepal Telecom had been delivering us their services through 2G, which provided internet facilities on Mobile devices through GPRS (Global Positioning Radio Service) services. GPRS, as compared to 3G is very slow in terms of speed. 3G renders a speed of 340 KBps whereas GPRS, a mere 12-19 KBps. While 2G boasted of only voice and data services, 3G delivers high speed internet along with video facilities too. With 3G, we can surf internet on our mobile devices, exchange multimedia messages, watch video, video chat and even watch TVS on our mobile devices.

Inorder to be able to use 3G services on our mobile devices, we need to have mobile sets that has been 3G enabled ,otherwise it’s virtually impossible. There are many 3G sets available in the market; some of them are as follows…Nokia E71, E63, E75, N72, HTC Mini, HTC HD, Apple I-phone 3G, Blackberry 9200 ,Google Nexus one among others. All these sets cost higher than normal sets. The price may vary with the brand; however most of these sets wouldn’t come to us at price lower than 20 thousand NRS. But I recommend one with QWERTY keypads, as it would be much easier to type on such sets as compared to touch screen.

After 3G enabled sets on hand, we need to acquire a 3G SIM-CARD. We can easily acquire one such SIM-CARD from NTC at Tripureshwor or Lagankhel. If you have been using NTC Post-Paid mobile, you can easily switch on to 3G Sim-Card paying just RS: 250. But if you have been using Pre-Paid Sim-Card it’s not possible to switch on to the 3G SIM. You need to get one new 3G Sim Card at around 1500 RS (includes a balance of rs: 1000, Pre-Paid).

With 3G Sim card and a 3G enabled mobile device, you can now surf net on your very own mobile device at high speed. But there are some configurations we need to make on our devices before surfing the net. The configuration may vary according to the sets you own. But one thing that remains same for every kind of sets is the ACCESS POINT (APN) (it’s ntnet for both PRE-PAID and POST PAID). Some mobile sets come with pre-installed browser while others don’t. In such cases we need to download browser as it’s troublesome to surf the net without a browser. The best one that I recommend here is OPERA MINI. Besides that we can also turn our 3G mobile device into a modem and surf high speed internet on our laptops and computer (either through pre-bundled wire or Bluetooth). 3G service has just been extended to Pokhara besides Kathmandu.



EVDO..

As said EVDO is a CDMA based technology we can’t use it with GSM mobile device. In order to be able to make use of this service, we need to own a CDMA mobile sets that is EVDO enabled or get a device that has EVDO (looks like a pen drive). Since EVDO enabled CDMA sets are rare in Nepal, we need to get an EVDO device. Recently, Samsung has launched one such EVDO-CDMA set in India but it’s still not available here in Nepal. Another thing we need to consider is the price factor; EVDO mobile sets are comparatively higher in price as compared to the EVDO device. The device would come to us at around NRS: 3500 (Three Thousand Five Hundred Only). But the device is also a rare species in Nepal. I forayed for around one month in search of this device in the nooks and alleys of KATHMANDU for this device. Finally I got one after a long search. Under my recommendations, five of my friends have already got this for themselves and the response has been wonderful till date. While purchasing the device make sure that it is EVDO enabled; since there are many types of such devices available in the market one can be easily fooled.

As compared to 3G, EVDO is way faster. It has a speed of approx 3.2 MBPS (not KBPS). You can check the speed yourself; just log on to www.speedtest.net and check the speed. Believe me, a 5MB song can be downloaded easily in not more than 5 seconds. The data cost is also cheaper in EVDO. But we have to compromise on one thing, since we can’t make calls using this service as for now. It’s limited to data only.

We can get EVDO SIM-CARD from different NTC offices (Chabahil, Lagankhel, Tripureshwor etc). The SIM-CARD would cost us RS: 2500 (Two Thousand Five Hundred Only, comes with a balance of rs: 2000). With a citizenship’s photocopy and a passport- size photo you can demand for one such SIM-CARD here in Nepal. But EVDO is limited to Kathmandu Valley only as for now.

EVDO is best for people who need to walk around places and work on the internet but it is equally useful to common people as well. Its impact can be felt in a single use when attached to a laptop or a desktop computer. The websites are delivered in a blink of an eye.

I have attested here some pictures of EVDO devices for you best information. Need more information about where you can find it, feel free to contact me:98510-08722)





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