The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Ericsson and MTN Roll Out Commercial LTE in Africa

Ericsson and MTN South Africa have launched a commercial Long-Term Evolution network which will be available across the African continent. Along with its RBS 6000 family of base stations, the network and communication provider Ericsson will be supplying the Evolved Packet Core, Home Subscriber Server for user data management, Operating Support Systems and project management and services.

The launch comes after the pilot network has been running for more than a year and will be one of its type as it is the first commercial LTE network by Erickson in Africa.

Long Term Evolution is the next generation of mobile communication technology which enables fast transfer of huge amounts of data in efficient and cost-effective manner and optimising the use of spectrum.

The network has increased capacity and its lower latency allows subscribers access to faster web browsing, online gaming, social media and video.

Speaking at the launch, Lambo Kanagaratnam, MTN South Africa Chief Technology Officer, said, "MTN's first LTE network will enable our South African customers an experience that is more efficient and seamless."

Lars Lindén, head of Region Sub-Saharan Africa Ericsson, noted that the network will open countless opportunities and change the lifestyle of people while the commercial deployment of the network will help users experience and interact in a better and efficient way.

Ericsson is the world leader in LTE and today has more than 90 commercial LTE contracts on 5 continents, of which over 50 networks have already gone live. As of July this year, more than 455 million people worldwide have LTE coverage, of which 305 million are covered by LTE networks supplied by Ericsson.

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