YooMee Africa, a wireless broadband operator in Cameroon, announced a partnership with Alcatel-Lucent to build a first LTE network in Cameroon.
According to Peter Ziegelwanger, YooMee chief technical officer (CTO), YooMee already has a live WiMAX network which it is still expanding. Speaking to reporters at AfricaCom 2013 in Cape Town today (Wednesday) Peter Ziegelwanger said they planned to go live with LTE in the first quarter of 2014.
“Our aim is to bring internet to the masses. Not only to an exclusive part of the population in Sub-Saharan Africa, but also to the lower and middle classes,” said Ziegelwanger.
YooMee has targeted deploying TDD LTE in its new markets within the next 6 months. The operator expects to build out in average 35 to 50 sites per capital city before deploying in remaining cities of the countries it operates in.
Alcatel-Lucent will deploy a complete end-to-end TDD LTE solution consisting of eNBs, Wireless Backhaul and the Evolved Packet Core (EPC). The Company will also provide professional services such as network planning, pre-launch optimisation, network integration, and start-up assistance services to accompany YooMee with its commercial rollout.
“The choice of Alcatel-Lucent by YooMee confirms our leadership in LTE and specifically our market leadership in Africa. We have shown that we can adapt to the different requirements of service providers in Africa by offering the products, services and expertise to meet their need. This solution leverages both our Wireless and our IP leadership capabilities to provide exactly what YooMee needed for their plans. We look forward to working alongside YooMee as they expand ultra-broadband service in Sub-Saharan Africa,” said Daniel Jaeger, Vice-President of Alcatel-Lucent in Africa.
Regarding future markets for YooMee, Ziegelwanger said Angola, Rwanda and the Ivory Coast were all on their radar, but regulatory and license issues are expected to delay roll outs in those countries.
Regarding Alcatel-Lucent’s involvement, the vendor said it will provide an end-to-end network deployment as well as network integration and startup assistance.
Photo Credit: YooMee.cm