Egypt Cabinet to discuss today release of 4G frequencies: minister

Egyptian government will discuss on Wednesday meeting offering new 4G services licences after being deferred a week earlier, Yasser El-Kady, Minister of Communication and Information Technology told Amwal Al Ghad.

This subject had not been discussed last week before the Cabinet owing to Bahraini king’s Cairo visit, which resulted in signing 11 agreements to enhance mutual economic cooperation.

All four mobile phone operators Vodafone, Orange, Etisalat Misr, and Telecom Egypt will equally benefit from releasing the new 4G frequencies, sources familiar with the matter said.

The minister added that this was a long overdue step for Egypt to take, at a time when about 157 countries around the world had already included 4G services for their clients. Egypt was one of three countries in Africa did not put investments in these services including Libya and Chad.

However, the three mobile operators showed 80 percent readiness to receive 4G services and demand finalizing all required settings in terms of infrastructure including frequencies, cables needed to link services and cell signal booster towers.

Beating Egypt to it, Zain’s Sudanese unit announced Tuesday launching the 4G LTE services in a number of cities in Sudan.

In cooperation with Sweden’s Ericsson, a multinational corporation that provides communication technology, the 4G LTE service will be operated to include Khartoum, Port Sudan, Al-Ubayyid, and other cities. The Swedish company will be responsible for the establishment of the essential infrastructure while Huawei Corp will take over the next phase of the project.

LTE is a 4G wireless communications standard developed by the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) that’s designed to provide up to 10x the speeds of 3G networks for mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, netbooks, notebooks and wireless hotspots. 4G technologies are designed to provide IP-based voice, data and multimedia streaming at speeds of at least 100 Mbit per second and up to as fast as 1 GBit per second.