Nokia and Orange deploy 4G LTE in Africa

09 March 2018 | Natalie Bannerman

Nokia and Orange Middle East and Africa (MEA) are deploying a single radio access network and network management technology across seven African countries.

The roll out of the new technology will happen as part of a three-year modernisation project to prepare for the launch of 4G services. In addition, Nokia has set up a dedicated west and central Africa support centre for Orange.

Speaking on the announcement, Jean Marc Vignolles, chief operating officer at Orange MEA, said: "We are committed to enriching the lives of our subscribers by providing innovative technology solutions. With Nokia's proven technologies we can realize new efficiencies as we enhance coverage and the subscriber experience."

The project will form one of largest LTE rollouts in Africa with Nokia set to modernise approximately 11,000 radio sites in Egypt, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Senegal, Mali, Guinea-Bissau and Niger. Using Nokia’s single RAN technology and modernisation services, Orange will be able to support existing 2G and 3G subscribers while optimising speeds and coverage as it launches 4G services.

Deployment is already underway and Orange has already lowered operational costs and launched new 4G services in Egypt, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Mali, Senegal and Guinea-Bissau. It has also enhanced its 3G services by increasing throughput by an average of 85% and is reporting 90% increase in traffic across those seven countries.

"We needed to ensure a smooth evolution of our network while launching 4G in all countries where it was possible and Nokia was the best partner to pave that way," said Yasser Shaker, CTIO of Orange MEA.

Based at its Orange support centre in the Ivory Coast capital of Abidjan, Nokia is using its expertise to deliver a full set of services, including alarm, performance and configuration monitoring, as well as corrective actions on the radio installed base, while optimising the network to ensure that the 60 million Orange subscribers experience consistent high-quality service. The support centre will also serve as a gateway for future solutions and technologies such as: IoT, smart cities and other use cases in Africa.

"We have a longstanding relationship with Orange in Africa and are thrilled to take this relationship to the next level with this agreement, said Amr El-Leithy, head of Nokia MEA. "Our proven technology and services will enable Orange to proactively manage the data explosion and develop new revenue streams. Orange will also be able to offer new services that take advantage of enhanced broadband speeds to enrich the subscriber experience."

Under the scope of the deal Nokia Care Services will ensure that all service level agreements are met and the Nokia NetAct network management system will allow Orange to maintain network efficiency, stability and performance.

Topics: Nokia, Orange, 4G, LTE, Africa, Jean Marc Vignolles, Yasser Shaker, Amr El-Leithy