Airtel hires Alcatel-Lucent to build MPLS network

Deployment to enhance African mobile broadband capacity

Tags: Alcatel-LucentBharti AirtelIndia
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Airtel hires Alcatel-Lucent to build MPLS network The new backbone will support all mobile broadband services to Airtel’s 17 operations in Africa. (Getty Images)
By  Roger Field Published  December 13, 2012

Indian telecom giant, Bharti Airtel, has hired vendor Alcatel-Lucent to increase the capacity of its mobile broadband networks in Africa by deploying an MPLS network.

Alcatel-Lucent will expand and modify Airtel Africa's data transport and mobile backhaul networks using IP/MPLS technology. The new backbone will support all mobile broadband services to Airtel's 17 operations in Africa, which serve some 60 million customers. The network will also strengthen Airtel Africa's interconnection to global networks including the UK.

The IP/MPLS network will carry all the international traffic (voice, internet, IT ) of Airtel in Africa, connecting it to the peering point in the UK. The single international network will offer a more simple structure to improve performance, according to Alcatel-Lucent. The investment includes a common platform for Layers 2 and 3 of the network, which will give faster internet speeds.

Eben Albertyn CTO of Airtel Africa said: "Alcatel-Lucent is helping us to fully utilise the advantages of IP/MPLS technology to handle high volumes of a variety of mobile broadband data and video services.

"The new network not only provides a substantially improved quality of service for our current customers, it also does an excellent job of preparing Airtel Africa for future international expansion opportunities."

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