Fujitsu, Itochu to Build Colombia WLL Networks

TOKYO (04/06/2000) - Fujitsu Ltd. and Itochu Corp., a large Japanese general trading company, have been awarded two contracts to build wireless local loop (WLL) networks in Colombia, they said yesterday.

The first contract, valued at 500 million yen (US$4.7 million), came from Empbogota SA ESP and calls for the construction of a 45,000 line WLL system in Bogota based on CDMA (code division multiple access) technology, they said in a statement. Based on the CDMA2000 version of the format, the system will offer maximum data transmission rates of 144K-bps (bits per second).

As part of the deal, both will also supply digital switches and a Synchronous Digital Hierarchy (SDH) based optical transmission system.

The two also won a contract to supply a 22,000 line CDMA WLL network to Empresas Publicas de Medellin, the parent of Empbogota. The project is expected to be completed in April, they said.

A WLL system uses radio to bridge the so-called "last mile" stretch of the telephone network between a local carrier switch and the consumer. For telecommunications carriers, the system enables services to be quickly and cheaply rolled out to many homes or to be provided to homes in rural areas where it would otherwise be too costly to deploy conventional copper telephone lines.

The system will be the first CDMA-based WLL network to be deployed in Colombia, said the partners, which previously supplied a 95,000 line WLL network based on the Japanese PHS (Personal Handyphone System) technology to the same operator.

Fujitsu, in Tokyo, can be found online at http://www.fujitsu.co.jp/. Itochu, also in Tokyo, is online at http://www.itochu.co.jp/.

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