Nokia Siemens Networks helps Saudi Telecom manage Hajj mobile broadband rush

Telecom Lead Middle East: Saudi Telecom Company (STC) said it has delivered the best mobile broadband experience to Hajj pilgrims this year thanks to the partnership with Nokia Siemens Networks.

The partnership with Nokia Siemens Networks has helped STC maintain its network performance at the best rate with 99.9 percent network availability, despite the huge increase in the traffic. As the sole GSM and 3G radio supplier, Nokia Siemens Networks provided STC with its Single Radio Access Network (RAN) and Special Event Support Services (SESS).

Nokia Siemens Networks deployed its Single RAN platform, based on its high-capacity Flexi Multiradio Base Station, to STC’s GSM and HSPA+ networks. During the exceptional traffic and load conditions, the company’s SESS ensured that the increased demand for network capacity was met and that no degradation in network performance occurred.

Nokia Siemens Networks is the sole GSM and 3G radio supplier for STC’s network in Mecca, Medina, and other pilgrim areas, and supported the operator to maintain optimum network performance for the 12th consecutive year in 2012.

In addition Nokia Siemens also provided supply, installation, integration and commissioning of equipment as part of this special service. Nokia Siemens Networks also provided its NetAct network management system, enabling consolidated monitoring, management and operation of STC’s GSM and 3G networks.

“We take great pride in maintaining a strong mobile connectivity for the millions of pilgrims, facilitating their rituals, and providing them with an exceptional Hajj experience,” said Bandar M. Alqafari, vice president Networks Sector at STC. “Consistent with the remarkable increase in smartphone penetration, Hajj 2012 witnessed the biggest mobile broadband demand ever.”

During this mega event, STC processed more than 2750 terabytes in the Internet traffic. The network capacity was increased by more than 60 percent increasing its capability to serve more than 26 million users, equivalent to the network capacity of several countries, Alqafari added.

“Nokia Siemens Networks understands the importance of Hajj for millions of Muslims and how essential it is to make sure STC’s network performance remains optimal during the pilgrimage,” said Hani Dib, STC customer team head at Nokia Siemens Networks.

“Between October 24 and 27, 2012, voice traffic increased by over 40% and data traffic by over 100% compared to previous year’s Hajj,” Dib added. “Even though we had less spectrum during Hajj 2012 compared to previous years, the network performance exceeded the previous years’ performance.”

Nokia Siemens may clock EUR 4 billion net sales in Q4 2012

Telecom Lead recently reported Nokia Siemens Networks is expected to clock net sales of approximately EUR 4 billion in the fourth quarter 2012.
As per Nokia Siemens’ revised estimate, the non-IFRS operating margin was between 13 and 15 percent in Q4, which compares to the previous outlook of approximately positive 8 percent, plus or minus four percentage points.

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