Lebanon Businessnews News

Telecom Ministry faces-off poor mobile calls
Fiber optics to substitute radio-links
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The Ministry of Telecommunication (MoT) will expand the operating network to deal with growing technical malfunction. The ministry will shift from radio-links to a fiber optics network which is not affected by natural factors. The shift will be active as of next month.

Mobile operators have been facing a deterioration of their respective networks. These include: Difficulties to establish new transmission stations, weak transmissions in many regions, and interference between transmission stations. Frequent electricity cuts, especially in Beirut, along with the increase in the number thefts of fuel and batteries, the high capacity of Syrian refugees, and the usage of mobile devices incompatible with the network, have all contributed. The ministry is working on installing 150 new stations.

Minister Boutros Harb said that illegal jammers and repeaters were behind frequent call jams, calling on citizens to report abuse on hotline 111. The ministry announced a joint initiative with the mobile operators to substitute the illegal equipment with legal ones free of charge. Harb said that no citizen will be penalized for using these devices when they substitute them with new ones. “Owners of illegal machines will be legally prosecuted starting next month,” it said.

Ogero will take all necessary operational measures to assist operators in order to improve the quality of services. Ogero landline telephone broadcast towers in some remote areas, such as Fatqa, Oyoun El Siman, Terbol, and others, will be equipped to improve data transmission services and Internet services from 3G to 4G.

Mobile operators will be also able to use new telephone stations initially belonging to Ogero in order to increase the scope of their activities.

Larger number of international transit lines will host the increasing number of roaming lines, which will improve the quality of this service and lessen the burden of overcrowded networks. It will be implemented by the end of September 2014.

The ministry is studying the possibility to launch lower-priced pre-paid cards limited to Syrian refugees for calls to their relatives in Syria.

The ministry said that it will monitor and evaluate network performance continuously.

Reported by Rana Freifer
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Date Posted: Aug 27, 2014