NTEL Telecommunications, the fifth and newest licensed telecom operator in Nigeria, has announced plans for its phased nationwide commercial roll out.
NatCom Development and Investment Limited, which bought over NITEL through a guided liquidation process, and now trading as NTEL, made the announcement of its roll out on Thursday in Lagos, explaining that it would launch in Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt in November this year, as its first phase rollout, before extending its telecommunications services to other states, towns and villages across the country.
NatCom began as a consortium of companies which came together to bid for the core assets of NITEL/MTEL through a guided liquidation process.
Having acquired the telecom licences to operate in Nigeria as a GSM operator, NTEL becomes the newest telecom operator in Nigeria.
Announcing its debut, its Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Kamal Abass, said under the first phase ,NTEL would launch international bandwidth services over SAT-3 and a 4G mobile network covering Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt.
According to him, NTEL would be offering three portfolio of telecoms services in the areas of business mobile network international, voice termination international bandwidth delivery and the metro bandwidth fixed services.
All these services would be launched on the NTEL 4G LTE mobile service, which offers high speed data, high-definition voice and video.
“The first phase network will begin with deploying up to 800 sites, and later increase to 2,000 sites,” Abass said.
He said NTEL had revived the old NITEL SAT 3 that carries broadband capacities from Europe to Lagos, connecting South Africa and Far East African countries, and would build the NTEL telecoms service on SAT3.
Speaking on the benefits of SAT 3, Abass said: “SAT-3 partnerships enable direct exchange of international traffic, known as IDD, with 35 partners. Since July 2015, NTEL has delivered 10 million IDD minutes to Nigeria. With the SAT-3/WASC, NTEL provides connectivity from Lagos to Sesimbra, Portugal and Lagos towards Capetown and countries in between.
NTEL also provides international bandwidth/IP connectivity to carriers and major corporates between Nigeria and international destinations. With over 1,100km of ducts and over 4,000km of fibre route in almost all states in Nigeria, NTEL is enabled to offer fibre capacity services to all Nigerians.
In future, NTEL will provide fixed network services to homes and businesses where extant infrastructure can be leveraged at minimal incremental cost.”
SAT-3 submarine cable stands for South Atlantic Telecommunications Cable number 3.
The cable system began operations in 2002 with 17 landing points in 15 countries. It is Africa’s longest submarine cable covering a distance of 28,800km.
SAT-3 has a total capacity of about 1,000 Gbps. The cable system is funded and owned by a consortium of 35 foremost telecoms operators from different parts of the world, Nigeria inclusive, and NatCom is the fourth highest shareholder with a share of 6.23 per cent.
Abass promised Nigerians a new telecoms experience with the NTEL 4G network, explaining that mobile phone manufacturers are beginning to increase production on 4G-nabled phones that will be used on the NTEL, 4G network.