Turkish mobile operators, Turkcell, Avea and Vodafone Turkey, have today officially launched UMTS-based services nationwide. The companies were awarded the country’s first 3G concessions in December 2008 and began to deploy their next generation networks in April 2009. Turkcell CEO Sureyya Ciliv said: ‘We’ve already covered approximately 60% of the population with 3G technology, and we’re going to launch in all of Turkey’s 81 provinces. That, as a matter of fact, was the coverage we were supposed to reach in the first three years. We made it in 90 days.’ In April Avea contracted three equipment suppliers to build out its W-CDMA HSPA-enabled networks in the western, Anatolian and Mediterranean regions of the country. Meanwhile, Vodafone has announced that it plans to invest USD1 billion in its network in the twelve months following the initial launch of 3G.