On 20 September 2014 Orange Senegal, the wholly owned subsidiary of Senegalese incumbent Sonatel, announced the latest phase of its ongoing 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) deployment, launching a pilot trial in Saly, in Mbour department, less than a year after a successful test in Dakar in October 2013. Orange Senegal is one of the few operators in Africa to have dipped its toe in the 4G pond, and currently holds a permit to test services from the regulator, L’Autorite de Regulation des Telecoms et des Postes (ARTP). The cellco says its 4G pilot is now live in 40 locations including a dozen in the Petite Cote area (i.e. around Mbour, Saly, Somone and Ndiass Saly). The others are located in Dakar and all provide speeds of up to ten times those available on the operator’s 3G+ network.
Orange Senegal rivals Tigo, a subsidiary of Millicom International Cellular (MIC), and Expresso Telecom (Senegal), have also been granted temporary authorisations by the regulator ARTP to carry out their own 4G trials over the period to 31 December 2014.