South Africa: MTN Checks Out Huawei Technologies To Solve Spectrum Challenge

Reports have revealed that MTN Group have commercially deployed the CloudAIR 2.0 offering in South Africa, using technology from Huawei Technologies that allows it to share spectrum between 2G, 3G and 4G services, instead of allocating resources entirely to one network

The telecoms giant used this strategy as authorities in the nation have previously been slow to award new frequency licenses to the telecom industry.

The tech from Huawei Technologies enables an operator to shift spectrum between different network services as and whenever it is needed. Previously,  an operator would have been forced to "refarm" spectrum on a permanent basis, and an instance would be to take airwaves away from the 2G network to support newer 4G technology.

MTN's Chief Technology and Information Officer, Giovanni Chiarelli said: "Spectrum is notably a very precious asset. This new network optimisation strategy improves spectral efficiency and gives our network the ability to deploy LTE within the same 900MHz band alongside GSM, UMTS and NB-IoT while causing a significant improvement in LTE coverage and experience."

Reports have made it known that countries where the opposite holds true appear to have made limited progress. Operators with sufficient spectrum to support 4G services for the foreseeable future may see little need to channel funds into another network technology.

In South Africa, the regulatory authorities were said to have concluded that March 2019 would be the date for the country's next frequency auction. Operators have complained of their desperate need for airwaves to enable them to offer faster mobile broadband services to subscribers and business customers.


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