Africa well positioned for leap to 4G LTE

MOBILE

|
Image: By BiztechAfrica
Africa well positioned for leap to 4G LTE

With its capacity for innovation, Africa’s mobile network sector is well positioned to drive the explosion in service offerings on the back of 4G LTE implementations.  This is the view of Sherry Zameer, Africa and Middle East Head of telecommunication solutions for Gemalto, world leader in digital security.   Zameer’s comments follow the AfricaCom conference held in Cape Town last week, which was attended by some 8000 delegates from over 100 different countries.

“Africa is largely unrestricted by legacy platforms and onerous regulations, and so has the capacity to leapfrog standard 3G migrations, to embrace LTE and all the benefits of better quality service and content possibilities that the next generation platform provides,” Zameer continued.

While LTE penetration stands at less than 0.003 percent of the market in Africa, Rwanda, for example, is poised to implement LTE from the get go.

Spectrum is an Issue

“Successful LTE implementations in Africa will depend on how well the issue of spectrum is addressed and how well wireless services (radio) work with LTE to deliver the quality of service required,” Zameer added.

“Africa has a track record of innovation and being first to market in many instances (e.g. M-Pesa and dynamic tariffing) and I expect that the implementation of 4G LTE will be no different,” he said.

While the continent is poised to take telecoms growth to a whole new level, questions among attendees at the conference remain as to how generate profits on new service options, once LTE is deployed

“This will prove to be pivotal,” Zameer said.

Profitable engagement with outside stakeholders - key

With LTE, comes greater opportunity for customer engagement via mobile marketing platforms as well as business-to-business transactions via machine to machine (m2m).  The latter involves the development of sophisticated ecosystems and reliance on a number of stakeholders other than the Mobile Network Operator (MNO) itself.

“For MNO’s the question really is how to leverage these new content opportunities and different take-to market-models, as they fall outside of the traditional delivery of voice and data services,” Zameer said.

Data and payments on growth path

Data is still a key driver in the sector with estimates of prepaid bundles being around $6 for voice and $20 for data.  This means that there is still appetite for data driven applications.

Because most Africans do not have access to banking services or bank cards, Zameer believes mobile payments will continue to be a key driver for transactional services, and with that mobile security.  "Both will drive growth in the sector,” he added.

Gemalto has won a number of innovation awards for its LTE- related platforms. Its LinqUs Advanced OTA platform enables networks to smoothly transition to LTE during an evolutionary period of mixed network technologies.   The company has also been the leading global technology behind many high-profile commercial LTE deployments, including Verizon and MetroPCS, the first two operators in North America to migrate to LTE.

“With billions of connected devices forecast to be deployed in the near future, the wireless ecosystem is changing. This creates new opportunities for mobile network operators to act as service providers for a diverse range of applications such as NFC, Machine-to-Machine (M2M), or streaming multimedia content,” Zameer said.



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE MOBILE NEWS

African wireless to benefit from Fortinet’s Meru acquisition

Enterprises looking to boost their wireless network security, capacity and control are set to benefit from Fortinet’s pending acquisition of Meru Networks, says the Fortinet Africa team. Read More

BlackBerry makes $137m from software, technology licensing in 3 months

BlackBerry Limited this week reported its financial results for the three months ended May 3 this year, showing earnings of $137 million from software and technology licensing revenue. Read More

Broadband a GDP enabler: MainOne

Broadband has a key role to play as an enabler to increase employment and grow GDP, MainOne CEO Funke Opeke told the recent Commonwealth Broadband Forum held in Abuja. Read More

BICS reports explosion in LTE roaming

BICS, a global wholesale carrier for voice, mobile data and capacity services, says it has witness a rapid increase in LTE roaming traffic over its market-leading IPX network.  Read More

BlackBerry Leap launched in Nigeria

BlackBerry Limited has launched its latest device, the BlackBerry Leap, in Nigeria.  Read More

Late night mobile car searches skyrocket in Ghana

80% of new car customers and almost 100% of used car customers begin their car shopping experience online, often late in the evening via mobile, says online vehicle marketplace Carmudi.  Read More

Smile Communications selects Ericsson for 4G/LTE managed service

Ericsson is to manage operations and maintenance for Smile Communications in Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo. Read More

Airtel names Yaya Toure as new brand ambassador

Bharti Airtel Africa has announced Yaya Touré as the new African face for its upcoming continental campaign.   Read More

Q1 mobile subscriptions in Africa hit 910m

In Q1 of this year, total number of new mobile subscriptions in Africa moved up to about 910 million including 21 million new subscriptions, the latest Ericsson Mobility Report has shown.   Read More

Infinix Mobility showcases Zero 2 smartphone in Nigeria

A leader in the manufacturing of trendy smartphones, Infinix Mobility Limited, has unveiled the Infinix Zero 2 smartphone into the Nigerian market. Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage ERP AfricaSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoiceMicrosoft 4Afrika

FEATURED STORY

IHS plans to inject fresh $500m to grow capacityIHS plans to inject fresh $500m to grow capacity

Mohammed Darwish, managing director of IHS Towers, says the firm will soon inject another $500million into the business after raising some $2.5billion to finance expansion drives. Darwish spoke with biztecafrica.com in Lagos.

IN DEPTH

As curtain falls on MDGs, what next?As curtain falls on MDGs, what next?

Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, president of the Copenhagen Consensus Centre, speaks to Biztechafrica about setting smart targets.