Nortel Networks and Orange have launched a pre-commercial UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) network and are debuting Orange's new third generation (3G) service offerings at the 2004 Cannes International Film Festival.
Consumer 3G services for mobile entertainment, including video telephony, video streaming and video mail featuring local content and television broadcasts are being showcased during the film festival. Services for interactive gaming, and a suite of business applications are also being launched. These new service offerings are planned for mass consumer availability later this year.
Nortel Networks is the exclusive supplier of Orange's UMTS radio access equipment covering Cannes, and provided specialized network engineering, installation, radio optimization, and network support services to maximize 3G coverage for the area.
Nortel Networks has also been selected as the sole supplier of Orange's UMTS radio equipment to cover the entire Cote d'Azur region and southern France, including Cannes, Nice, Lyon, Marseille, Montpellier, Toulon, Grenoble and St. Etienne.
Nortel Networks and Orange initially deployed the Cannes network in a brief, five month period (October 2003 -- February 2004) to demonstrate live 3G networking capabilities to the global telecommunications industry earlier this year at the 3GSM World Congress held February 23-26.
"The Cannes deployment is a very important project for us -- first to demonstrate live the reliability and performance of 3G at the industry's largest trade forum, and now to debut our 3G data service offerings at one of the world's highest-profile entertainment events," said Didier Quillot, chief executive officer, Orange France. "The close collaboration of our teams, and Nortel Networks expertise in radio coverage technologies have contributed to make this launch a great success."
"I believe 2004 will be remembered as the year wireless went broadband, and we are very proud to be here with Orange to once again show the world what 3G can offer," said Alain Biston, president and general manager, UMTS, Nortel Networks. "Nortel Networks is proud to be working with leading innovators like Orange in delivering sophisticated, highly-reliable services that will drive a new age of broadband mobile communications."
The Cannes deployment builds on a long-time relationship between Nortel Networks and Orange. Nortel Networks has contributed to the international France Telecom SA/Orange mobile network for more than 15 years and provides equipment for Orange in France and five other Orange networks across Europe.