Pakistan now boasts of 4G network coverage in the highlands, allowing climbers access to high-speed data services. And this honor goes to Special Communications Organization (SCO) for providing high speed 4G services at K-2 Base Camp Concordia. In the past, climbers worldwide used the most expensive satellite receivers to connect with the rest of the world. The mobile coverage and 4G Internet access in this most extreme and beautiful place will benefit mountaineers and trekking groups to stay connected with the world and assist in emergency situations.
Built at an altitude of 4,691metres, the base station which became operational is located at the Concordia base camp of K-2, the world’s 2nd highest peak. The site is named ‘Ali Sadpara’ in memory of the late high-altitude mountaineer who vanished on K-2 this year. It was inaugurated by Prime Minister Imran Khan during his recent visit to Gilgit-Baltistan and has been made operational by the Special Communications Organization (SCO) to ensure communication facilities at the base camp of the world’s second highest peak. The mobile coverage and internet access will be pivotal for mountaineers and trekking groups, allowing them to stay connected while they trek in the highest and most difficult locations of the world. It will also help to promote adventure tourism and weather monitoring.
Here’s a quick history of cell coverage near K-2 base camp. The first 4G connection from Base Camp Askoli, a small town located in Shigar Valley, in the Gilgit–Baltistan was established in October 2018. Askoli is the launch pad for mountaineering expeditions to K-2, and other major mountains. To further expand the coverage SCO tower at Concordia K-2 base camp installation project is executed in April 2021, which is functional in a record time. This development is evidence of the efforts of the government, regulators, and operators to provide better communication facilities at every nook and corner of the country.