Operator MTN Zambia has selected Vanu, a provider of equipment, tools and services that allow mobile network operators to profit by serving off-grid communities, to supply equipment and services for as many as 300 mobile network sites throughout the country.
Vanu says that its systems, employing OpenRAN-compliant architectures, will enable MTN Zambia to provide coverage to communities that have yet to experience the benefits of mobile connectivity, while also recognizing multiple new revenue opportunities.
Vanu says that its equipment, tools and services are built to minimize costs for power, backhaul and maintenance, and enable mobile network operators (MNOs) and partners, such as MTN Zambia, to provide off-grid coverage profitably.
To efficiently cover villages, Vanu uses a combination of proprietary equipment, tools and services, including low TCO (total cost of ownership) cell sites, mapping tools and network planning tools (to ensure sites are built in optimal locations), as well as monitoring, optimization and support services (to ensure maintenance resources are used efficiently).
In addition, Vanu says that its coverage mapping tool, VanuMaps, provides MNOs, their partners and potential investors with the high-resolution coverage and population data needed to more accurately and efficiently identify the return on investment afforded by serving previously uncovered villages.
This is clearly a busy time for MTN Zambia, which has also recently announced that it will be investing $9.8 million to boost network capacity and enable high-speed data services on 337 3G and 4G/LTE network sites across the country, focusing on areas with the highest demand pressure. The upgrade is expected to be complete by August.