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Press Release -- March 20th, 2012
Source: Nokia Siemens Networks

Nokia Siemens Networks expands Saudi 4G network

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia – March 20, 2012

Also modernizes STC’s nationwide GSM and 3G networks

Subscribers of Saudi Telecom Company (STC) can expect a new generation of mobile broadband services with super-fast speeds of up to 100 megabits per second (Mbps). The operator has selected Nokia Siemens Networks to upgrade its nationwide GSM and 3G networks and expand its commercial 4G (TD-LTE: time division duplex long term evolution) network. Nokia Siemens Networks is now responsible for building one-third of STC’s nationwide 4G network. STC announced the launch of its commercial 4G network using TD-LTE equipment from Nokia Siemens Networks in September 2011*.

“STC and Nokia Siemens Networks have enjoyed a long-standing, strategic relationship that has gone from strength to strength over the years. The latest round of network expansion and modernization provides a further boost to our partnership and will help us deliver a differentiated experience to our customers,” said Zeyad Thamer Al-Otaibi, STC Group chief executive officer for Technical Operations.

“User experience with 4G is much more enhanced and satisfactory as compared to traditional mobile broadband technologies. For instance, not only is there a noticeable increase in speed, but end users also get to enjoy new, multimedia applications and services,” said Bandar Mohammed Al Qafari, vice president Network Sector at STC KSA. “With more and more subscribers using bandwidth-intensive applications for smart phones and USB dongles, we needed to modernize our existing GSM and 3G networks, while rapidly launching 4G services. This is exactly what Nokia Siemens Networks offered us – excellent technology coupled with a smooth services roll-out.”

As part of the contract, Nokia Siemens Networks is modernizing STC’s GSM and 3G networks to its award winning Single RAN (radio access network) platform based on the compact, energy-efficient Flexi Multiradio Base Station. The company is deploying its 4G radio network infrastructure across 2,500 STC sites over the next two years. Nokia Siemens Networks is also providing its FlexiPacket Microwave transport platform, which is a common transport medium for STC’s GSM, 3G and 4G networks with on-air speed of up to 400 Mbps.

Nokia Siemens Networks’ Self-Organizing Networks (SON) suite, part of the company’s Liquid Radio, enables straightforward plug-and-play 4G base station rollout. This results in operational and capital cost savings, while also improving customer experience by ensuring 4G base stations always deliver their peak performance.

“This contract reiterates our commitment to further the adoption of 4G technology globally,” said Bernard Najm, country head for KSA at Nokia Siemens Networks. “STC is our long-standing partner and we are delighted to bring 4G services to its subscribers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Our expertise in 4G technology and strong services support helped STC deliver on its plans to modernize its nationwide network and roll out 4G services faster.”

As part of the contract, Nokia Siemens Networks is also upgrading its NetAct network management system to enable effective monitoring, management and operation of STC’s GSM, 3G and 4G networks. In addition, the company is providing services such as network implementation with project management capabilities for rapid and efficient network roll-out. It is also providing care services that include hardware, software maintenance and competence development. Nokia Siemens Networks already operates and optimizes STC’s GSM and 3G radio networks as part of a separate managed services contract.

For more information on Nokia Siemens Networks’ mobile broadband capabilities, including a video overview, follow this link. To share your thoughts on the topic, join the discussion on Twitter using #LTE, #MBBFuture and #mobilebroadband.

About Nokia Siemens Networks

Nokia Siemens Networks is the world’s specialist in mobile broadband. From the first ever call on GSM, to the first call on LTE, we operate at the forefront of each generation of mobile technology. Our global experts invent the new capabilities our customers need in their networks. We provide the world’s most efficient mobile networks, the intelligence to maximize the value of those networks, and the services to make it all work seamlessly.

With headquarters in Espoo, Finland, we operate in over 150 countries and had net sales of over 14 billion euros in 2011.

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*STC, Nokia Siemens Networks launch commercial 4G network using TD-LTE
Nokia Siemens Networks is leading the commercialization of Long Term Evolution (LTE) in terms of commercial references and live network performance. LTE is the next-generation mobile broadband technology and the evolutionary step from GSM, WCDMA/HSPA/HSPA+, TD-SCDMA, CDMA and WiMAX networks. It delivers the best broadband user experience and smart device services in an efficient way due to increased data rates, reduced latency and scalable flat all-IP network architecture. Nokia Siemens Networks has shipped its LTE ready Flexi Multiradio Base Station to over 200 operators. In addition, it was the first to make an LTE call using commercial hardware and standards-compliant software in 2009.

Among Nokia Siemens Networks’ 52 commercial LTE deals are Azerfon in Azerbaijan (radio); Bell Canada (radio); Bharti Airtel in India (TD-LTE radio, EPC); Deutsche Telekom in Germany (radio); Du in UAE (radio); Elisa Finland, Elisa Estonia (radio, EPC); KDDI in Japan (radio); KT in Korea (radio); LG U+ in Korea (radio); Mobily (Etisalat) in Saudi Arabia (TD-LTE radio, EPC); Mosaic Telecom in USA (radio, EPC); NTT DOCOMO in Japan (radio, EPC); Sky Brazil (TD-LTE radio, EPC); SK Telecom in Korea (radio); STC (Saudi Telecom Company) in Saudi Arabia (TD-LTE radio); Tele2 in Sweden (EPC); Telecom Italia (radio); Telefónica O2 in Germany (radio); Telenor Denmark (radio); Telia in Sweden; TeliaSonera in Denmark and Finland, EMT (TeliaSonera) Estonia (radio), and LMT (TeliaSonera) Latvia (radio, EPC); Telus in Canada (radio); TMN Portugal (radio, EPC); Verizon in USA (IMS for LTE) and Zain Bahrain (radio, EPC).

According to the latest information available, 57 operators worldwide have already commercially launched LTE. 23 of these 57 operators use Nokia Siemens Networks’ LTE networks including Bell Canada; Deutsche Telekom in Germany; Elisa in Finland; KT in Korea; LG U+ in Korea; Mobily (Etisalat) in Saudi Arabia; NTT DOCOMO in Japan; Sky Brazil (TD-LTE radio and EPC); SK Telecom in Korea; STC (Saudi Telecom Company) in Saudi Arabia; Tele2 in Sweden; Telia in Sweden, TeliaSonera in Denmark and Finland, TMN in Portugal, EMT (TeliaSonera) in Estonia, LMT (TeliaSonera) in Latvia; Telefónica O2 in Germany; Telus in Canada (radio) and Verizon Wireless in USA.

In addition, Nokia Siemens Networks is involved in half of the TD-LTE trials that are currently ongoing around the world: over 16 major field trials in China, Taiwan, Russia and other areas of the world. The company has commercial deals with six TD-LTE network operators including STC, Mobily, Sky Brazil and Bharti Airtel. Sky Brazil has deployed the first commercial 4G network in Latin America using Nokia Siemens Networks’ end-to-end TD-LTE products and services.

An LTE performance drive test by Signals Research Group on a Swedish commercial live LTE network confirmed that the overall results achieved in the Gothenburg network (supplied by Nokia Siemens Networks) were better than those achieved in the Stockholm network (supplied by another vendor). For more information about the performance of Nokia Siemens Networks’ LTE offering, please refer to an independent report from Signals Research called ’Signals Ahead LTE Drive Test Revisited – Part 1’, which is available here.

Nokia Siemens Networks’ Single RAN including the Flexi Multiradio Base Station provides a future-proof, easy and cost-efficient path to LTE in both FDD and TDD spectrum bands via a simple software upgrade. Besides the Single RAN that supports GSM, 3G, FDD-LTE and TD-LTE, the company’s LTE telecom infrastructure offering also features the Evolved Packet Core, including Flexi NS (Network Server) and Flexi NG (Network Gateway), transport solutions, network management system, Self Organizing Networks (SON), the award-winning Voice over LTE (VoLTE), provisioning and charging solutions and a range of professional services to plan, install, maintain and operate networks. For more information, click here.

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