Tele2 Netherlands picks Nokia small cells to boost LTE coverage

Tele2 Netherlands is to use small cells from Nokia to help improve LTE network capacity and indoor coverage throughout the Dutch market.

The operator only launched its LTE Advanced network in the Netherlands last November, when it said it had secured 92 per cent outdoor population coverage and was targeting 100 per cent coverage by the end of March 2016.

Now, it hopes to improve coverage in outdoor "hot spots" and certain indoor locations by implementing small cells to complement its macro LTE network. It opted for Nokia outdoor and indoor small cells after carrying out what the Finnish vendor said were successful trials of the technology.

Nokia said the small cells, called Flexi Zone, have already been installed at Tele2's flagship store in Amsterdam. The "all-in-one" micro and pico base stations also provide macro capacity, which the vendor said allows for an easy deployment of so-called HetNets -- networks that combine macro base stations with small cells.

Tele2 NL became the fourth LTE player on the market when it launched services last year. It came to market with a strong data message, promising to create a permanent shift in mobile data consumption in the country and targeting a 20 per cent market share by revenue.

The operator -- which competes with Vodafone NL, T-Mobile NL and KPN on the mobile market -- also said it aimed to be the first operator in the world to rely solely on LTE for its mobile services, which will eventually include voice over LTE (VoLTE).

However, such LTE-only players already exist in Africa. For example, Smile Telecom started out with data-only services based on LTE networks and has also launched VoLTE services in Uganda.

Meanwhile Vodafone NL also said it planned to launch VoLTE and WiFi calling services to consumers in autumn 2016.

For more:
- see this Nokia release
- see this Vodafone release (in Dutch)

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