The Ethiopian national telecom provider, Ethio-Telecom will in the next five months replace Nokia mobile network coverage in Addis Ababa owith either ZTE or Huawei citing the Finnish’s networks are old and outdated and need an upgrade.
According to Ethio-Telecom, Nokia networks will be replaced in Ascot, Alem Bank, Akaki, Kolfe Keranio, Hanamariam, Jomo, Lebu and Mekanisa.
The upgrade is part of a move to double the country’s mobile subscribers from 20 million to 40 million and divide the country into 11 infrastructural zones to address network problems.
Setting up of zones will also simplify procurement of telecom equipment and ease network management. A recent study found that creating telecom circles and boundaries between the various networks will ease management.
According to Ethio-telecom, it will restructure the 16 zones to 11 across the country with each vendor manning one zone and will devide the zones between Huwawei and ZTE with Addis Ababa being one of them.
Nokia has worked with Ethio-Telecom for the last six years in Addis Ababa but ZTE has been routed as the successor as it has capacity to provide 3G services in the entire city but according to Debretsion Gebremichael, Minister of Communication and Information Technology there is no final decision yet on whether ZTE or Huawei will be assigned the zones.
Both ZTE and Nokia cover Addis Ababa, while Huwawei covers the outskirts of the capital. Nokia, Ericsson, Siemens and ZTE work with Ethio-telecom up-country.