Etisalat today, announced that the company is in the final stage of testing the advanced Long Term Evolution (LTE) network and expects to commercially launch the service in the 3rd quarter of 2011.
The announcement was made at the company’s second session of its ICT Annual Media Seminar titled “LTE Technology and its influence on the media industry.” The seminar also addressed the benefits of Etisalat’s ICT development strategy in the UAE.
In his opening speech, Ali Al Ahmed, chief corporate communication officer emphasised that along with the company’s recent completion of the fibre-optic network deployment covering Abu Dhabi, the launch of the LTE technology will further enhance ICT development in the country enabling both social and economic development.
Ahmed added, “LTE, the fourth generation mobile technology, has been implemented by Etisalat in the age of popularity of smartphones and tablet devices to meet customer’s ever increasing demand for richer services and connected lifestyles. Etisalat’s 4G services will bring significant benefits and opportunities to individuals and businesses alike through higher throughput and increased efficiency, bringing with it limitless broadband access to customers anywhere, anytime.”
According to Etisalat, LTE technology will enable multiple benefits including higher download speeds of upto 150MBps, wider bandwidth and four times the voice clarity of other mobile technologies, enhanced social media and video sharing capabilities, among others.
“LTE will enable real time sharing of events and information across multiple devices and is said to combine the benefits of LAN, WAN, MAN and PAN technologies to create a comprehensive customer experience. In addition to which, the technology is a complete packet switched network where all the network elements are digitised in a secure network,” said Dr Eesa Bastaki, CEO, ICT Fund.
Dr Bastaki also addressed the audience with his vision of the future. “IT has transformed the way people communicate with each other, today, IT is used for interaction with people and multiple devices and tomorrow, it will lead to interaction between devices. Intelligent mobile or Mobile IQ (MIQ) is the future of technology.”
He also stated that IT will enable the creation of the “ubiquitous” city where everyone and everything will be connected and even the most personalised services will be automated. According to him, the advent of a digital world is a natural transition from today, where the Internet is considered a utility.
Etisalat announced that it plans to launch the LTE service in stages beginning with data card and wireless modem service followed by LTE enabled smartphones and other smart devices, and move on to LTE associated cloud devices, with extensive roll out of the technology by the end of 2012.