Wednesday, July 26, 2017

3G SIMs up for sale

A clerk at YGN Mobile prepares a mobile handset for clients. (Ko Taik/The Myanmar Times)A clerk at YGN Mobile prepares a mobile handset for clients. (Ko Taik/The Myanmar Times)

While Myanma Post and Telecommunications has confirmed that a reduced-price 3G SIM card will be available for sale this month, officials have reported mixed launch dates and prices.

U Htay Win, chief engineer for MPT’s mobile department, said the price of the new SIMs will be set at K150,000. MPT will sell the new SIMs at this cheaper-than-ever price in the middle of January, he told The Myanmar Times.

The 3G SIMs will not come with mobile internet preloaded, and consumers will still have to apply, U Htay Win said. Currently, mobile internet consumers must apply at the MPT office with proof of purchase and K10,000 and wait three to four business days for connection.

Another official from MPT’s mobile department who asked not to be named said that MPT has set the launch date for sales on January 14. The official said that the price for GSM SIMs will be K100,000 and that WCDMA SIMs will be K120,000.

Meanwhile, mobile phone dealers on Yangon’s Shwegondaing Road said officials from MPT have confirmed that the SIMs will be for sale on January 7. Some Myanmar news journals, including Pyi Myanmar, stated the launch date as January 8.

The new SIMs will be for sale in Yangon, Nay Pyi Taw, Mandalay, Mon State and Kayin State, according to U Thein Oo, general manager of MPT.

He could not confirm when the SIMs would be on sale, adding that the exact date will be decided by the Telecommunications Minister. U Thein Oo confirmed, however, the SIMs will be available in January.

While MPT plans to open 18 retail outlets in Yangon to sell the new SIMs, Yatanarpon Teleport will open five outlets in Mandalay, said U Soe Aung, deputy chief engineer of MPT’s mobile department.

On December 13, MPT began collecting the currently used 2G SIMs – set at K200,000 – back from distributors. Elite Tech, an offshoot of the Htoo Group of Companies, announced it no longer stocks any 2G SIM cards.