Megafon has won the St. Petersburg metro from other operators and will collect tribute from them

    imageThe operator Megafon has completed work on testing a new network in the St. Petersburg metro. The main purpose of the new antenna-feeder system (AFS) system is uninterrupted communication for civil defense and emergency services, ensuring the interaction of law enforcement agencies and emergency operational services, the operator’s representatives say. In the new network, drivers and dispatchers will be able to communicate via secure communication channels.

    The operator did not spare several hundred million rubles for the implementation of the project. The company had to install base stations, additional equipment and lay a radiating cable in all tunnels.

    And most importantly, the network allows MegaFon itself to provide communication and Internet access services right in the subway tunnels. Today MegaFon is the only operator providing communication services in the St. Petersburg metro.

    Acceptance of applications for connecting operators will begin in the near future. None of the requests will remain unanswered, we will publish information on technical conditions no later than February 1, 2016 and will begin to accept applications, the operator’s representative promises. “The terms of consideration of applications from operators will depend on the content of requests and on the technical solutions they offer, ” explainedComNews representative of MegaFon. “We do not expect any significant malfunctions when connecting to the AFS, provided that third-party operators will clearly comply with the technical conditions,” he added.

    Beeline has long requested technical specifications for connecting to Megafon’s infrastructure in the metro and has not yet received an official response, an operator’s representative said. A similar request in early October was sent by MTS . In September, Tele2 provided LTE at all metro stations and is interested in making Tele2's communications and high-speed mobile Internet available not only in vestibules, on platforms and escalators, but also in stretches of the St. Petersburg metro, the operator’s representative said.

    So far, Megafon has no final agreements with operators.

    The decision to build a network in the subway by MegaFon was made in 2009. Then it was assumed that all operators would work on this network. In October 2014, MTS complained to the antimonopoly service that since 2011, Megafon has been solely using the network in the metro to provide services to its subscribers and does not allow competitors to connect to it.

    The representative of Megafon explained the lack of access to competitors by the fact that the network has not yet been commissioned, since the tests have not been completed.

    OFAS considered the case for almost a year and in August 2015 recommended that Megafon lay open the procedure for submitting requests from a third-party operator for access rights and notify OFAS of the completion of the tests. Yesterday, a representative of the OFAS told Vedomosti that a notification was received from the operator.

    “MegaFon will inform about the mode and timing of the start of receiving these applications,” the press release said.

    To connect a third-party operator to a single AFS, Megafon must provide the data necessary for the formation of technical conditions (TU) for connecting the equipment of this operator to the AFS, if necessary, provide the TU metro for additional equipment.

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