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UK’s 3G mobile network giant appoints technology partner

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Mobile Broadband Network (MBNL), the network collaboration joint-venture
between T-Mobile UK and 3 UK, has selected Nokia Siemens Networks as
technology partner for 3G network integration. Nokia Siemens Networks will
provide a network consolidation solution, bringing environmental benefits,
cost savings to the operators and improvements for customers.

Nokia Siemens Networks has been selected as the 3G radio network
infrastructure supplier for the consolidation of the two operators' 3G radio
access network infrastructure under MBNL, in the process creating the UK's
most extensive 3G network providing near complete population coverage by the
end of 2009.
The contract has been awarded by MBNL, the 50:50 joint venture formed at the
beginning of 2008 between 3 and T-Mobile UK to supervise the creation and
operation of the joint network on behalf of both companies. The network
consolidation agreement will significantly increase both operators' 3G
network quality and coverage, accelerate the provision of new high-speed
mobile broadband services and deliver substantial cost savings as well as
environmental benefits.
The first integrated cell site was commissioned in early February. Since
then MBNL has concluded a pilot in the Leeds and Bradford area which
successfully validated that the network consolidation technology will
deliver the desired benefits focused on achieving nationwide 3G coverage.
Emin Gurdenli, Technology Director at T-Mobile UK, says: "We are now moving
ahead with the large scale consolidation of cell sites. A key objective was
to ensure that we achieve scale and integrate quickly and smoothly,
minimising costs while quickly expanding coverage so as to enable a much
improved service experience for our growing number of mobile internet and
broadband customers.
"We believe that with Nokia Siemens Networks as our principal technology
partner, MBNL will deliver on its objective of creating what will be
Europe's largest HSDPA network in record timescales."
Graham Baxter, Chief Technology Officer for 3 UK, said: "High-speed mobile
broadband is going to be a key enabler for both consumers and businesses
looking for convenient access to Internet-based services wherever they are.
This innovative network collaboration agreement will help to accelerate the
adoption of new services in a timescale each of us could not have achieved
on our own. It also enables us to cost effectively meet customer demand for
wider coverage, faster speeds and greater capacity that is starting to arise
as mobile devices become the most cost-effective and convenient route to
access the Internet."
Although masts and the 3G access networks are being combined, each company's
core network and T-Mobile's 2G network will not be shared. Both parties will
retain responsibility for the delivery of services to their respective
customers and use their own frequency spectrum. Nokia Siemens Networks'
industry-leading radio access solution will replace most of the two
operators' communications stations across the UK and equipment at the
remaining sites is being upgraded and reconfigured for higher quality and
capacity. The solution, featuring energy-efficient Flexi base stations from
Nokia Siemens Networks, will allow a reduction the number of sites in the
network by about 30%.
As well as network infrastructure, Nokia Siemens Networks will deliver
project management, network deployment and managed spare parts capability,
as well as care services to maintain network performance and increase its
efficiency.
"This contract is an endorsement of our successful partnership with the two
companies and we are committed to supporting them in their growth objectives
as well as simplifying the network and reducing their operating costs. Our
role in creating the UK's largest 3G network underscores Nokia Siemens
Networks' leadership in managing advanced and complex network integration
projects for the benefit of our customers," said Spencer Rigler of Nokia
Siemens Networks.
Synergies in network operations will be achieved thanks to the leading-edge
Multi-operator Radio Access Network (MORAN) solution from Nokia Siemens
Networks, allowing their networks to function independently. There are
several benefits of this unique technology including full flexibility while
merging the two networks, the re-use of existing infrastructure and the
reduction of the number of sites.
In addition to cost savings and improved network quality, the integration
will also deliver environmental benefits as the Nokia Siemens Networks Flexi
base station helps achieve power savings at site of up to 70% compared with
traditional 3G equipment.