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Etisalat to grow LTE coverage with Alcatel-Lucent

Operator plans to cover 99% of populated areas in the UAE with LTE by 2015.

Etisalat to grow LTE coverage with Alcatel-Lucent
Etisalat: The new network will address the increasing demand for high-speed mobile broadband

Etisalat announced this week that it is set to expand LTE coverage in the UAE by deploying an Alcatel-Lucent LTE solution.

A joint statement from the two companies said that this was the most efficient and sustainable way to deliver a LTE-FDD (long-term evolution frequency-division duplexing)-based network, and high-speed mobile broadband to users.

The new network will address the increasing demand for high-speed mobile broadband, which is being fuelled by video, gaming and other high-bandwidth applications, the statement said.

"This additional business collaboration with Alcatel-Lucent will enable our customers in the UAE to continue to experience cutting-edge broadband connectivity in terms of mobile broadband internet access, mobile TV applications, video streaming and video calls," said Haitham Abdulrazzak, CTO of Etisalat UAE.

The expanded network, then, will not only offer increased mobile broadband speeds, but will also give Etisalat the ability to support service in smaller coverage areas, the two companies said. The idea is to cover 99% of the populated areas in the UAE with LTE by 2015.

The expanded network will also pave the way for the introduction of advanced cloud services, and evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Services (eMBMS in 2014, the statement added.

"Etisalat's deployment of Alcatel-Lucent's LTE solution underscores the confidence they have in our ability to rapidly expand the reach of their network to keep pace with exploding ultra-broadband demands of customers throughout the UAE," said Luis Martinez Amago, President of Alcatel-Lucent's EMEA region.

This announcement comes as Alcatel-Lucent hopes to shift its core business to become a specialist vendor of IP networking and ultra-broadband access. The company last year unveiled a plan to shed $1 billion in assets and to become profitable by 2015.

At its annual Technology Symposium in November 2013, Alcatel-Lucent announced a number of customer wins to do with LTE deployments.

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