MOSCOW - September 5, 2000 - Mobile TeleSystems OJSC (NYSE: MBT) ("MTS"), a leading Russian provider of mobile cellular communication services, and Motorola, Inc. (NYSE:MOT) announced today the launch of the first General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) high-speed mobile data network in Russia based on the MTS dual band GSM 900/1800 network.
On August 28th MTS and Motorola carried out a technical launch of the first phase of GPRS network in the Moscow area. With 160 base stations operating in the packet data transmission mode, MTS may substantially increase the range of value added services of high-speed access to the Internet and mobile data transfer. Cooperation of MTS and Motorola will allow the Russian GSM operator to implement GPRS services on its cellular network within a very short timeframe. Trials will be held in late September with commercial launch scheduled for December.
During the trials of MTS GPRS network Motorola Timeport handsets will be used by MTS corporate clients - Hewlett-Packard, Coca Cola and other companies. The companies have already expressed their interest in the new technology to further optimize their business. Starting December the packet data services will become available to all subscribers of Mobile TeleSystems.
MTS's choice of Motorola as the supplier of the core solution for the GPRS network is attributable to the fact that Motorola, through its alliance with Cisco, is the only supplier worldwide with complete end-to-end GPRS network solutions in commercial service. Both BT Cellnet in the UK and T-Mobil in Germany launched their GPRS services in June, and Telsim in Turkey and China United Telecommunications Corporation (China Unicom) launched their GPRS services in August, enabled by the Motorola/Cisco GPRS solution and Motorola's GPRS handsets.
"MTS has always been a trailblazer in the Russian mobile communications market, developing and implementing state-of-the-art technologies: with its choice of GSM as the standard for a national digital cellular network, building the first dual band network in Russia and finally to the launch of packet data transfer over cellular network. Together with Motorola we are making another important step on the way to 3G in Russia," - said Yuri Gromakov, technology and development vice president of Mobile TeleSystems OJSC. - "By upgrading our network to GPRS today, we build a solid platform for the fastest evolution to the third generation communications ".
"We are very pleased to see MTS moving towards an all-IP network using our end-to-end GPRS solution, along with some of the world's leading GSM operators" said Gene O'Rourke, vice president and regional general manager for Motorola Inc.'s Global Telecoms Solutions Sector (GTSS). "Mobile phone users in Russia will soon start using some of the latest wireless services made available thanks to the new technology" said O'Rourke.
With the new service in place the subscribers would have an 'always on, always connected' access to Internet resources, including email, using a GPRS handset (for example, Motorola Timeport 260) together with a notebook PC or a compatible PDA (for example, Palm series). The subscribers would not have to dial in to a special server or their Internet provider - the Net would always be there. In addition to this, Motorola Timeport GPRS handsets will allow to switch between calls and data transmission without any disruptions in either since they support the GPRS-B class.
The new technology makes it possible to visit standard HTML sites including those with content in Russian. A special WAP-browser built into the handset allows to browse WAP sites that use WML language, which brings the Internet straight to the phone and doesn't require a computer.
Using the mobile office suite of a GPRS phone linked up with a notebook PC, corporate subscribers would get instant access to their respective corporate networks. While on the go, such users would be able to access their corporate databases as well as other private and public resources and services (banking, e- trading, e-commerce, stock exchanges, etc.)
One of the main features of GPRS is the high speed of data transmission. While the regular GSM data transfer rate is 9.6 Kbps , GPRS currently provides a speed of up to 27 Kbps, and in the future the speed will be even higher: In 2001 Motorola expects to start production of GPRS handsets that will be able to transmit data at the speed of 56-64 Kbps. Using the equipment by Motorola Mobile TeleSystems will be able to offer its subscribers by the end of 2001 GPRS services and applications with data transfer rates of up to 86 Kbps.
Mobile TeleSystems OJSC (NYSE: MBT) is Russia's leading GSM 900/1800 mobile cellular operator. MTS has GSM 900/1800 licenses to provide mobile cellular telephony services in 34 regions of the Russian Federation, covering 45% of the country's population. It has commenced operations in 19 regions covering 39 million people. Information about MTS's activities and services can be found on MTS's website at http://www.mts.ru.
Motorola, Inc. (NYSE:MOT) is a global leader in providing integrated communications solutions and embedded electronic solutions. Sales in 1999 were $33.1 billion. For more information on Motorola, please visit http://www.motorola.com
Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) is the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet. Cisco news and information are available at www.cisco.com
For further enquiries contact:MTS
Eva Prokofieva, Press Secretary
tel.: +7095 104 4938
Beth Sharples, Public Relations
tel.: +44 (0) 802 367 639
Some of the information in this press release may contain projections or other forward-looking statements regarding future events or the future financial performance of MTS, as defined in the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. We wish to caution you that these statements are only predictions and that actual events or results may differ materially. We do not intend to update these statement to conform them to actual results. We refer you to the documents MTS files from time to time with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, specifically, the Company's most recent Form F-1. These documents contain and identify important factors, including those contained in the section captioned "Risk Factors," that could cause the actual results to differ materially from those contained in our projections or forward-looking statements, including, among others, potential fluctuations in quarterly results, our competitive environment, dependence on new service development and tariff structures; rapid technological and market change, acquisition strategy, risks associated with telecommunications infrastructure, risks associated with operating in Russia, volatility of stock price, financial risk management, and future growth subject to risks.
Motorola, the stylised M logo and all other trademarks indicated as such herein are trademarks of Motorola Inc. . Reg. U.S. Pat. & Tm. Off. ) 2000 Motorola Inc. All rights reserved.
Cisco, Cisco IOS, Cisco Systems, the Cisco Systems logo are registered trademarks of Cisco Systems, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries.
All other company, brand and product names contained in this release are used for identification purposes only and may be trademarks that are the sole property of their respective owners.