Mobile operator groups serving the Middle East and Africa have agreed to cooperate on network infrastructure sharing initiatives in an effort to provide mobile broadband access to unserved rural communities in the region. The operators also intend to drive down the cost of mobile services for consumers across the regions.
Operator groups Millicom and Orange have announced start up incubator projects as they look to promote technological innovation in the markets they operate in.
Global voice and data services provider Glocall Telecoms, through its Somali operator subsidiary Sahal Telecoms, has announced it will deploy LTE services in the Somali capital of Mogadishu.
Infrastructure vendor Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN) has appointed Deon Geyser as head of the Southern African sub-region, who has rejoined the firm from international operator group Millicom Cellular International, which is parent to the Tigo brand in Africa and Latin America.
Finnish handset maker Nokia, in the process of being acquired by Microsoft, told Telecoms.com it intends to use its fresh line of Android handsets as a platform to entice users onto Windows-based smartphones.
African operator group MTN has signed a five-year managed services deal with Swedish kit vendor Ericsson relating to its Nigerian business. Ericsson will take full responsibility for MTN Nigeria’s network management, optimisation and field maintenance in Lagos, Abuja, Enugu, Port Harcourt and Asaba, which represents 75 per cent of the Nigerian network.
Hong Kong-based carrier services firm PCCW Global has banded together with 16 other high profile international network operators, including China Unicom, Telecom Egypt, Etisalat and Ooredoo, to construct a high capacity submarine cable system between Asia, Africa and Europe.
MTN Zambia became the first carrier in the country to launch LTE on Friday, as the company introduced the service in Lusaka, Kitwe, Ndola and Livingstone. Phase two of the rollout, which is already underway, will expand LTE coverage within these same towns and cover new territories as well.
The details for global digital dividend spectrum allocation won’t be finalised until 2015 but Africa is the first region to cohesively earmark 700MHz bandwidth freed up by the transition to digital for future telecoms services.
The mobile broadband revolution is underway in Africa as WCDMA gathers momentum and LTE establishes an early foothold. Competition in many markets is intense but new players are not deterred from pursuing fresh opportunities afforded by the next wave of growth in the region.
Africa’s mobile market has largely been characterised by demand for low-cost prepaid feature phones. However, this is beginning to change as the cost of technology gradually declines and handset manufacturers operating in Africa are now preparing for a smartphone revolution in the coming years.
The pay TV market is starting to gather momentum in parts of Africa and the companies involved are working to create consumption and business models that reflect the region’s unique infrastructure footprint.
African newcomer Smile has launched in three markets this year with a pure LTE play. The firm believes that new technology can only be properly exploited by new players and has pledged to shake up markets across the region. Tom Allen, Smile’s COO, talks to Mike Hibberd.
George Fraser, VP – EMEA, at BSS provider CSG International, talks to Telecoms.com about the huge pressures of cost management in terms of service deployment.
The government of Niger has deactivated a third of mobile phone connections in the country in a bid to curb criminal activity using unregistered SIM cards, according to local reports.
Turkish operator Turkcell is seeking damages from African operator group MTN for alleged illegal acts relating to its GSM licence in Iran. The Turkish firm said it has filed a lawsuit against MTN before the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg.
Google is taking experience gained from the Google Fiber project, which has seen high speed broadband deployed to residences in Kansas City, Austin, Texas and Provo, Utah, and is turning its attention to a less obvious target market: Uganda.
Luc Tanoh, Chief Executive Officer, Econet Solar, talks to Telecoms.com about a business model operators can adopt, which uses solar energy to charge mobile devices to keep users connected and also improve their quality of life.
Atul Madan, Senior Vice President & Head MLS & PACS, Mahindra Comviva, talks to Telecoms.com about rising content consumption in Africa.
Grey routes, or international links that can be used by unscrupulous operators to avoid paying local interconnect fees to their peers, are costing carriers tens of millions in lost revenue.