Orange Romania activates EDGE

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EDGE capability to cover the most important cities of Romani

Alcatel and Orange Romania, the incumbent mobile operator, announced that they activated today the EDGE (Enhanced Data rate for GSM Evolution) capability natively embedded in Alcatel's Evolium radio access solution. This EDGE capability will cover the most important cities of Romania.

Under the terms of the agreement, Alcatel will EDGE-enable the Evolium 900 and 1800 MHz base stations already installed, thanks to a simple software upgrade. Alcatel will also add new base stations to the operator's network, so as to guarantee an adequate coverage of the population and level of service. The commercial service will be operating in the second half of 2004, after an experimentation due to start in the coming weeks.

This project will enable Orange Romania to deliver new broadband mobile applications and services to its customers, with limited investment in the network. By choosing the Alcatel Evolium solution, Orange Romania adopted a scalable and future-proof technology, and protected its initial investments.

All Evolium base stations shipped by Alcatel in 1999 and 2000 can seamlessly host plug-and-play EDGE transceivers as an option. Moreover, since early 2001, EDGE is an integral part of Alcatel's standard product offering and all Evolium base stations delivered to customers are fully EDGE-equipped at no extra cost. Alcatel has already shipped standard EDGE equipment to over 100 networks worldwide making EDGE a tangible reality.

As a result, all Alcatel GSM/GPRS mobile infrastructure customers may easily boost their existing network capabilities with EDGE while taking maximum benefit from their past investments. Alcatel's approach has been to anticipate EDGE by shipping up-front cost-effective, multi-standard network equipment to allow smooth commercial opening of new end-user services as soon as the appropriate handsets become available in volume.

"The priority today is to deliver the most advanced applications and services to the market, keeping costs under control", stated Bernard Moscheni, chief executive officer of Orange Romania. "The choice we made when we chose Alcatel's Evolium EDGE-ready solution proved to be the right one, as it goes in this direction".

"This is another important step in the long-term partnership between Alcatel and Orange", added Marc Rouanne, chief operating officer of Alcatel's mobile activities. "Furthermore, the activation of the native EDGE capability of our Evolium solution in Romania perfectly demonstrates how we can help our customers to face the growing market needs for new attractive mobile services."

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Alcatel
Orange Romania