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Kingdom’s telecoms deal with blackouts

Kingdom’s telecoms deal with blackouts

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Recent blackouts in Phnom Penh have disrupted mobile services at Cambodia’s second-largest mobile operator, Cellcard, the company said.

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The power outages, which began rolling through the city in early February, have shut down some Cellcard service antennas, or base stations, leading to temporary service failure in some parts of the city, Cellcard chief operations officer Kay Lot said on Friday.

“When Electrocite du Cambodge power goes out, we have battery back-up to keep the station going for an average of four hours. Beyond that, the station will shut down,” Kay Lot said.

The stations have shut down daily in different areas of Phnom Penh and customers have lodged complaints with the company, he said.

According to data obtained by the Post in January, Cellcard was the Kingdom’s second-largest mobile operator by subscriber numbers as of November, with 2.9 million users.

Officials at Smart Mobile and Hello Axiata said that although the rolling blackouts have shutdown power at base stations, battery-powered generators have kept service intact.

Mfone reported no interruption in service, and qb, Metfone and Beeline did not respond to requests for comment.

The blackouts are expected to intensify with the onset of Cambodia’s hot season, the Post reported late last month.

Phnom Penh needs 350 megawatts of power per day, a demand the country’s power grid cannot meet.

The city will likely need up to 400 megawatts per day before the end of the hot season, the Post reported.

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