The Liberia Telecommunications Authority (LTA) has issued an individual/universal licence to start-up venture JamCell allowing it to own and operate a public telecommunications network providing triple-play (voice, video and high speed internet data) services throughout the country. According to the LTA press release, JamCell is partnering with Ericsson of Sweden to deploy a form of Narrow Band Technology (NB-LTE), as an alternative to LTE, to meet the growing demand of device connectivity and serve as a pre-5G platform for cellular services and anticipated smart city applications. NB-LTE (sometimes called NB-IoT) has been described as one of the more promising low power wide area (LPWA) technology options. It brings to the table long range, low power and reliable communications, occupies less bandwidth (when compared to broadband) and produces a higher transmission power than wideband broadband.
JamCell’s representatives and LTA officials signed off on the licence on 8 February 2019, with the start-up saying it aims to effectively start operations in 2021. The company will invest close to USD100 million over the licence term, including licensing fees, spectrum acquisition and infrastructure development.