3 Ireland has announced that Samsung will be the sole supplier for the deployment of its LTE network, with the service due to launch in Dublin in August.
Samsung will be provide its LTE Radio Access Network and core infrastructure gear as part of its second commercial mobile network rollout in Europe, after an agreement with 3 UK announced last year. It will also deploy LTE base stations, associated systems and support services.
It was announced in August last year that 3 UK — which, like 3 Ireland, is owned by Hutchison Whampoa — had partnered with Samsung to launch its LTE service in 2013. This partnership came after the operator had secured LTE-suitable spectrum from market leader EE.
Mark Thompson, sales and marketing director for Samsung Networks Europe, said 3 Ireland will benefit from “synergies across the 3 Group and with Samsung”.
Samsung has previously deployed LTE in the US (Sprint and MetroPCS), Japan (KDDI) and Saudi Arabia (Mobily) and has strengthened its 4G presence in Europe with the creation of the Samsung Networks Europe division.
Ireland’s four operators Vodafone, O2, Eircom-owned Meteor and 3 secured LTE spectrum in the 800, 900 and 1800MHz bands in November, with the auction netting the government EUR854.64 million. To date, none of the operators have commercially launched LTE services, although Wireless Intelligence forecasts this will happen in Q3 this year.