Ethiopia’s monopoly telecoms service provider, Ethio Telecom, has launched a 4G mobile service in the capital Addis Ababa, Reuters reports. Initially, the operator’s LTE-based infrastructure is capable of serving up to 400,000 subscribers, and was constructed as part of a USD1.6 billion deal inked two years ago with Chinese vendors Huawei Technologies and ZTE; Abdurahim Ahmed, Ethio Telecom’s head of communications, was cited as saying that the 4G network had taken eight months to build. Customers interested in taking up an LTE-based service have a choice of several packages, ranging from ETB420 (USD21) per month for a plan offering a 2GB data usage allowance, rising to ETB3,6000 for a 30GB monthly data cap.
As previously reported by CommsUpdate, in November 2013 Ethio Telecom selected Huawei Technologies to roll out a 4G network across the capital Addis Ababa as part of a USD1.6 billion deal between the telco, Huawei and fellow Chinese equipment supplier ZTE signed in July and August. ‘In terms of allocation, Huawei will be responsible for the expansion of 4G in Addis Ababa, including other mobile services – the 2G, 3G, IP and the like,’ Mr Ahmed was quoted as saying at the time.