Huawei Technologies has signed a contract to supply CDMA2000 1x and 1xEV-DO network infrastructure to Venezuela’s second largest cellco Movilnet. Under the agreement the Chinese vendor will provide a range of 2G/3G equipment including radio access infrastructure and a core network softswitch. José María de Viana, CEO of Movilnet, said: ‘We consider Huawei as our strategic and reliable partner… Movilnet plans to offer the best 3G multimedia and communication services to our customers in 2006. We firmly believe that our network subscriber number will reach eight million by the year-end.’
In February 2005 Movilnet launched commercial 3G services in Caracas and the state of Vargas, and spent much of the year rolling out 3G coverage to four additional cities –Maracaibo, Valencia, Barquisimeto and Puerto La Cruz – and several airports. In September 2005 it expanded the EV-DO network to the Paraguachón region, covering the Páez municipality near the Colombian border. It had a total of 5.587 million subscribers at the end of March 2006, with an estimated 15,000 3G users, although it has not released official EV-DO usage figures.