ALCATEL-Lucent will help Bharti Airtel meet rapidly growing demand for mobile broadband services in its African operations by supplying advanced new Internet Protocol-based networking technology.
This is aimed at supporting the delivery of new mobile broadband data and video services.
Rising smartphone ownership in Africa is driving demand for high-bandwidth mobile data services such as video calling and online gaming.
According to a statement from Bharti Airtel, to satisfy this demand and meet continued expansion, Alcatel-Lucent will evolve Airtel Africa's data transport and mobile backhaul1 networks using its technology.
This new backbone network will support all mobile broadband services to Airtel's 17 affiliates across Africa - serving 60 million customers - and a more interconnection to global networks including the United Kingdom (UK).
The single international network would offer a simpler structure to improve performance, reliability, capacity convergence and interoperable mechanisms for faster service recovery.
The Airtel investment includes a common platform for Layer two and three service provision to reduce the time of delivering the variety of service types.
The result being faster internet speeds for mobile and Airtel business solutions, toll quality voice and extension of services from Airtel, ultimately leading to better customer experience and reduction in the cost of operations.
Airtel Africa representative Eben Albertyn said: "Alcatel-Lucent is helping us to fully utilise the advantages of technology to economically and effectively handle high volumes of a variety of mobile broadband data and video services.
"The new network implementation not only provides a substantially improved quality of service for our current customers, it also does an excellent job of preparing Airtel Africa for future international expansion opportunities."
Alcatel-Lucent Africa vice-president Daniel Jaeger said: "Airtel Africa IP/MPLS network will carry all the international traffic of Airtel in Africa connecting it to the peering point in UKWstomers' needs with an even higher degree of reliability."