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Zain Bahrain makes Middle East's first LTE call

in News, Nokia Siemens Networks, Zain, Zain Bahrain, LTE

March 31, 2010 - Zain Bahrain today showcased the region’s first LTE call, setting new standards for the telecoms sector by achieving a download data speed of 70 Mbps. In a trial to demonstrate its LTE readiness, Zain Bahrain proved its preparedness and commitment to mass-scale deployment of this advanced technology just six months after announcing the Middle East’s first LTE contract with Nokia Siemens Networks.

Using ready-to-deploy LTE commercial equipment, the trial involved Nokia Siemens Networks’ Flexi base stations, installed in separate buildings, as well as its NetAct network management solution.

Achieving a minimum latency of 15 milliseconds – the smallest ever in any public LTE call – the live call was used to highlight applications such as multi-video streaming, high-resolution video conferencing, voice over LTE, and LTE terminal mobility within an office environment. The call also set a new record by achieving the region’s highest ever data download speeds of 70 Mbps.

“Setting standards and raising the bar on excellence have always been a Zain Bahrain prerogative,” said Mohammed Zainalabedin, general manager, Zain Bahrain. “This first ever live call is a taste of the excellence our customers can expect when our entire network upgrade is unveiled by the end of this year. It is part of the continuous effort at Zain Bahrain to keep our promise to our customers that we will always deliver a world-class mobile user experience.”

“This is the region’s first real experience with a real life LTE ecosystem,” said Rami Shatat, head of the Zain Bahrain customer team at Nokia Siemens Networks. “Not only does it provide a concrete example of what the LTE experience will look like, but more importantly the applications we demonstrated in the live call clearly point to the increased value Zain Bahrain can create within its portfolio, by way of new and advanced telecom services.”

When it is completed at the end of this year, Zain Bahrain’s LTE network will not only be a world-class network, but will serve as a showcase for all of Zain Group’s operations across the Middle East and Africa. The deployment of LTE technology will ‘future proof’ Zain Bahrain’s network, allowing it to offer local and visiting ‘One Network’ customers a wide range of attractive mobile services for years to come. The experience and knowhow gained from this advanced technology in Bahrain will be exported to and shared with all Zain Group’s operations.

Even before LTE comes on line, Zain Bahrain customers will find a dramatic improvement in accessing the Internet with speeds of up to 14 Mbps with I-HSPA. There will also be a dramatic improvement in coverage throughout the Kingdom, permitting Zain Bahrain customers to continue experiencing the best quality service wherever ever they are.

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