US-based Airspan Networks has announced that it has been selected by internet solutions provider AfriConnect Zambia to provide equipment for the delivery of wireless broadband services. According to Airspan, it has been called on to deliver hardware that will enable the provision of WiMAX services in the capital Lusaka and a ‘several other major cities’ across the country. The deployment of network infrastructure operating in the 2.5GHz band will employ Airspan’s flagship Air4G compact, macro base station, which it claims will suit AfriConnect’s network rollout plans, as it notes that the technology enables wide area coverage and extremely high capacity. The first phase of the project will see several thousand subscriber terminals installed in Lusaka, and is expected to expand coverage into additional towns and cities.
Commenting on the development, Africonnect’s managing director, Mark Bennett, noted: ‘There is a lot of new international fibre optic capacity coming into Zambia at present, and we knew we needed a means to get this additional bandwidth out to our clients. We conducted extensive testing with several vendors and subsequently selected Airspan, whose products demonstrated superior technology and the best results in our environment … Zambia had gained a reputation for having slow connectivity, but that is changing rapidly. AfriConnect is driven to bringing affordable and dependable broadband connectivity to the Zambian community. ‘