Chinese networking vendor ZTE has gone on a winter world tour, landing several big deals in EMEA and Latin America.
The headline deal hasn’t been formally announced but both Reuters and the Corriere della Sera are reporting that ZTE has won the €1 billion deal to upgrade the combined networks of Wind and 3 Italia following the approval of their joint venture earlier this year. ZTE will have its work cut out as their main competitor – TIM – is already showing off its LTE-A credentials.
ZTE’s flight to Italy featured a stop-off in the Middle East, where it inked a deal with STC to provision its microwave 1000-hop link enterprise product in a revenue sharing business model. It also stopped over in Belgium to help Telenet become the first operator in Europe to have achieved a 1.3Gbps download speed in real network conditions, or so it claims, in a pre-5G network demonstration.
The final stop (so far) on the great ZLE pre-Christmas world tour has been Latin America, where is teamed up with Telefónica to build a vIMS network covering Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Guatemala, Ecuador and Uruguay, with the aim of providing VoLTE and VoWifi for Telefónica customers in those countries.
“vIMS is part of ZTE’s Cloud UniCore solution, providing Telefónica with cutting-edge and practical virtualisation solutions,” said Ziyang Xu, president of ZTE’s telecom cloud and core network products. “We are cooperating with Telefónica in ensuring a smooth integration of our IMS NFV towards UNICA infra cloud platform. ZTE will gradually create a simpler, more flexible and more open network for operators.”
Not a bad set of results for ZTE, which often gets overlooked in favour of Huawei, Ericsson and Nokia when assessing the networking kit vendor space. The Italy deal especially will have got their attention and if ZTE keeps up this kind of Ron Burgundy performance the other three might need to quickly arrange winter tours of their own.