Alcatel-Lucent has announced that MTN Nigeria, the country’s largest mobile operator by subscribers, will deploy a 100G fibre-optic network using the French-US vendor’s 1830 Photonic Service Switch (PSS) platform. The network re-uses existing 10G optical assets, thereby preserving MTN’s past investments while ensuring a future-proof and state-of-the-art solution, and also gives MTN the capacity and flexibility to offer wholesale services to other service providers in the region. ‘MTN realised we needed to upgrade our network to meet customer expectations for ultra-broadband connectivity and high reliability within Nigeria’s very competitive marketplace,’ commented Lynda Saint-Nwafor, CTO of MTN Nigeria, adding: ‘We wanted a state-of-the-art solution that met three main criteria: increased network reliability, a high degree of scalability to prepare the network for 400G and beyond, and preservation of our existing 10G investment. Alcatel-Lucent’s demonstrations showed that they could meet all of our criteria and we look forward to deploying the network overlay in 2014.’
Since launching its GSM network in August 2001, MTN Nigeria has steadily expanded its mobile services to 223 cities and towns, more than 10,000 villages and communities and a growing number of highways across the country, spanning 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja. At mid-2014 the cellco had a total of 58.45 million cellular customers, representing a market share of 44.8%.