Airspan achieves LTE certification in Russia

Longtime WiMAX supplier Airspan Networks won a crucial certification from the Russian Federal Agency for Communications (Rossvyaz) that will enable the company to provide its Air4G line of LTE base stations for use in that nation.

The certification specifically grants operators the authority to deploy networks using Airspan Air4G LTE equipment in the 2.3-2.7 GHz band. In addition, Airspan said it expects to attain certification for 3.x GHz specrtum LTE products once the ministry approves LTE operation in that band and establishes a certification process.

Airspan was also given permission to deploy WiMAX base stations in microcell and picocell form factors in the 3.3-3.7 GHz band. The company previously acquired WiMAX macrocell certification.

Air4G enables current customers that have deployed a mobile WiMAX network to transition to an LTE network with a software-only upgrade. "This also enables customers wishing to deploy 4G in the 3.x band today, to deploy a WiMAX network, build a customer base and migrate to LTE when approved by the Russian Ministry," said the company.

"Airspan is aggressively pursuing a central role in the Russian 4G market. The most comprehensive range of 4G products, paired with key strategic partnerships, is positioning Airspan for a series of wins in the Russian market," said Amit Ancikovsky, president of products and sales at Airspan.

In addition to developing its LTE business, the Boca Raton, Fla., company is also continuing to pursue international WiMAX opportunities. Airpspan announced in February that it had won a contract from Nepal Telecom to supply a nationwide WiMAX network using 2.3-2.4 GHz, and local reports from Nepal indicate that network is about launch.

According to Republica, Nepal Telecom's WiMAX network is installed and undergoing testing and will launch by Nov. 9. The article, which valued NT's contract with Airspan at $10 million, said NT will launch WiMAX in Kathmandu Valley during the first phase, expanding service to Bhairahawa, Pokhara and their surrounding village development committees (VDCs) in the second phase. The operator has also started installing WiMAX equipment in Bhairahawa and Pokhara. All of Nepal's VDCs should have WiMAX coverge by the end of 2013.

For more:
- see this Airspan release
- see this Republica article

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Virgin Mobile UK shocks rivals with LTE auction interest
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Transitioning from WiMAX to LTE: How one Malaysian operator is making it work
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