MTN, a prominent service provider in South Africa and the Middle East, has partnered with Finnish telecom vendor Nokia to modernize its network and enhance voice services.

Nokia will provide 5G cloud infrastructure and cloud-native IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) to drive MTN’s voice core evolution. Nokia has replaced the incumbent vendor with this move.

The deployment will help MTN South Africa to expand its Voice over LTE (VoLTE), WiFi and LTE services. Further, it paves the way for MTN to launch Voice over 5G, which will allow the service provider to easily bring 5G to mobile phones. MTN also used Ericsson’s gear for the launch of 5G services in 2020. MTN and rival Vodacom launched 5G services last year in South Africa.

"With Nokia cloud-native IMS, MTN has a strong path to 5G. This deployment allows us to provide customers with the highest quality and fastest connectivity, including superior voice connectivity through VoLTE," says Giovanni Chiarelli, Chief Technology and Information Officer, MTN South Africa.

This strategic partnership will also enable MTN to expand this modernization to its networks to other African countries where it is present to gain a competitive edge.

"Communications service providers need to successfully transform themselves into Digital Service Providers that are capable of offering customers fundamentally new user experiences. By adopting a cloud-based network foundation through Nokia, MTN enhances the customer network experience, as well as ensures much needed flexibility and lower network management costs," says Raghav Sahgal, President of Cloud and Network Services, Nokia, in the press release issued by the company.

MTN recently partnered with Voyage, Tech Mahindra, Altiostar, Mavenir and Parallel Wireless for the rollout out of Open RAN by the end of this year.

Keep up with the latest on how telco’s are transforming their network infrastructure at the Total Telecom Congress this October.