Mobitel (Sri Lanka)

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Mobitel (Pvt) Ltd
Native name
මොබිටෙල් (ප්‍රයිවට්) ලිමිටඩ්; மொபிடெல் (பிறைவேட்) லிமிடெட்
IndustryMobile Telecommunications
PredecessorOTC Australia (Pvt) Ltd
Founded1993 (1993) in Colombo, Sri Lanka
HeadquartersColombo 02, Sri Lanka
Key people
Nalin Perera (CEO)
ProductsMobile, Mobile Broadband, Mobile Financial Services, Fixed Broadband, Mobile TV
ParentSri Lanka Telecom PLC
SubsidiarieseChannelling PLC

Mobitel (Sinhalese: මොබිටෙල් ; Tamil: மொபிடெல்) is the National Mobile Service Provider of Sri Lanka and country's second largest mobile network operator with over 9 million subscribers.[1] The network, which started operations in 1993, became a wholly owned subsidiary of Sri Lanka Telecom in October 2002.[2]

Mobitel offers a variety of services and currently operates GSM, GPRS, EDGE, UMTS, HSPA, HSPA+, DC-HSPA+ and FD-LTE network utilising 2G, 3.5G, 4G and 4.5G technologies with VoLTE service.[3] It covers most of Sri Lanka with its GSM network. Mobitel offers both prepaid and postpaid mobile services, along with mobile broadband services using the 3.5G network, postpaid mobile services, and mobile broadband services using the 4G network. Mobitel also launched Mobile Money services in November 2013 which is called mCash[4] making the mobile phone a financial instrument.[vague]


Mobitel office in Colombo, as seen in 2006

Mobitel was incorporated in 1993 as the third mobile telephone provider in the Sri Lankan market. Originally a collaboration between Sri Lanka Telecom and Telstra, Mobitel has been wholly owned by SLT since November 2002.

In January 2004, the company launched its fully-fledged 2.5G GSM network that is EDGE/GPRS enabled and designed to operate on dual band. In December 2007, the company launched its 3.5G HSPA network - the first Super 3.5G network in South Asia. Further, Mobitel successfully demonstrated HSPA + MIMO technology with down link speed up to 28.8 Mbit/s and carried out successful trial of 4G/LTE technology with downlink speed exceeding 96 Mbit/s, for the first time in the South Asian Region. Investments committed to date in the 2.5G/3.5G/4G networks and service offering amounts to over US$ 500mn.[5]

Following the successful implementation and operation of an AMPS/TDMA network in the country, Mobitel launched its GSM operations in January 2004 with the deployment of a fully fledged GSM network in the 800 MHz and 1800 MHz band, which is EDGE/GPRS enabled. In 2005 and 2006, Mobitel traded the 800 MHz band for slots made available from the 900 MHz spectrum. With this enhancement, Mobitel embarked on a field trial of 3G at the 1st International Buddhist Conference held in 2006, setting the stage for the launch of its 3G services in Sri Lanka.

Investments committed to date for this technology to provide 3G and GSM totals over US$200 million.[6] This included increasing the present number of base stations from 600 to 1,500 by the end of 2008{README, 2012}.


Mobitel currently operates GSM, UMTS and also a LTE Advanced network with downlink speed of up to 300 Mbit/s and uplink speed up to 150 Mbit/s.[7][8]


Mobitel provides international services with GSM roaming coverage of over 200 countries[9] and GPRS roaming coverage of over 120 countries[10] including bilateral partnerships with global carriers.


  1. ^ "Sri Lanka Telecom Group 2018 profits up by 25.58%". 23 February 2019.
  2. ^ Mobitel About
  3. ^ Missing or empty |title= (help); External link in |website= (help); Missing or empty |url= (help)
  4. ^ Mobitel MCash Official Page
  5. ^ Missing or empty |title= (help); External link in |website= (help); Missing or empty |url= (help)
  6. ^ "S.Lanka Mobitel invests $200 mln in network upgrade". December 5, 2007.
  7. ^ "Mobitel pioneers 4.5G network to revolutionise Sri Lanka's mobile telecom industry". DailyFT. 2018-02-02. Retrieved 2018-02-02.
  8. ^ "Mobitel 4.5 G". Mobitel (Sri Lanka). Retrieved 2018-12-28.
  9. ^ "Postpaid out-roaming Networks".
  10. ^ "GPRS out-roaming networks".

External links[edit]