US-based vendor Airspan Networks has announced the successful deployment of its LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) indoor and outdoor network solutions for Vodafone Zambia, the joint venture between UK telecoms giant Vodafone Group and sub-Saharan Africa 4G operator Afrimax Group.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in June 2016 Vodafone Group and Afrimax Group announced a new Partner Market agreement for Zambia, confirming that under the non-equity agreement they would offer customers high speed 4G data services using the Vodafone Zambia brand. Commercial services were launched that same month.
Now, as a result of Airspan’s technology rollout, Vodafone Zambia claims to have become ‘the first to deploy the Band 40 2.3GHz TDD which combines LTE and Wi-Fi indoor with a smart hand over between the technologies in Africa’. Airspan has reportedly deployed its AirHarmony outdoor and AirVelocity indoor LTE access technologies, the latter being a high performance LTE-A and Wi-Fi small cell, designed to bring public access LTE networks to indoor spaces. AirHarmony, meanwhile, is said to provide the outdoor micro layer of a heterogeneous LTE-A network deployment.
Commenting on the development, Lars Stork, CEO of Vodafone Zambia, was cited as saying: ‘Our vision is to provide superior LTE systems in Zambia that will offer high-quality internet connectivity in order to bridge the digital divide, which is critical to the growth and empowerment of people not only in Zambia but across the African continent … We chose Airspan because they demonstrated the ability to quickly deliver LTE solutions at an attractive price/coverage/performance ratio.’