Orange has selected Parallel Wireless to extend its coverage across multiple African markets, beginning with the Central African Republic.
Across the continent, Orange is implementing a program called IDEAL - Include Digital in Every African Life - that aims to provide digital services to their customers who do not have any connectivity today.
Of the four operators present in Central African Republic, Orange is the most recent to join. The country is digitally divided, with only 48% unique mobile connections and limited network infrastructure. Hardware-based 2G, 3G or 4G networks require expensive and bulky equipment to deploy and operate and are difficult to upgrade.
Parallel Wireless enables a shift to open, software-based, and virtualised OpenRAN network architectures to deliver scalable 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G software-based networks. These are cost-effective to deploy and maintain, and can deliver coverage and capacity to end users and businesses across the country.
The solution provides seamless mobility, local breakout, and low latency for the best subscriber experience for 2G voice and 3G/4G data. The software enables OpenRAN architecture and DU/CU split by using standards-based and open interfaces between network components. It also simplifies network management and integration of new RAN products into the core of the network.
Hervé Suquet, CTIO, Orange Middle East & Africa, said: “Thanks to this technology, Orange RCA will provide to rural populations the full range of services (voice, data and Orange Money), already provided in urban areas. Being able to run 2G and 3G on the same system today and, as our customers upgrade their devices to 4G in the future, seamlessly upgrade to 4G will help us not only extend our initial investment, but also bring new services much faster.”