Jersey Telecom (JT) and Ericsson have entered a partnership to build a next-generation mobile network, as part of what the telco and its key technology provider are calling an ambitious project set to begin this year.
In business for more than 130 years, JT describes itself as a government-owned full-service global connectivity and business enterprise provider offering customers in the largest of the Channel Islands a range of communications services to connect people.
The telco employs more than 500 people across the world, and has an international business providing services such as SIM swap prevention, mobile number portability, enterprise messaging and sponsored roaming. JT’s internet of things (IoT) division, created in 2014, was sold for a record sum in 2021, and the company continues to invest in other emerging technology products and services. In 2018, JT became the first telecoms provider globally to complete a socially inclusive project to connect fibre-optic broadband directly to the homes and businesses of every customer in Jersey.
The Channel Islands hosts a diverse set of industries in financial services, agriculture and tourism. JT already offers full-fibre connectivity to homes and businesses, and says its new mobile network will underpin domestic services, as well as advancing international and IoT capabilities. As well as offering improved speeds and security, the network modernisation will aim to bring noticeable improvements for businesses and consumers such as improvements to voice quality on mobile calls, more bandwidth for mobile users and improved coverage.
Pushing the bar in the world of mobile, the next-generation network will use Ericsson’s radio access network (RAN), transport and cloud core services, giving JT’s customers access to enhanced mobile connectivity, and paving the way for future technologies and services.
Moreover, Ericsson said JT’s mobile and fixed line services will benefit from a modernised, scalable network architecture, providing a secure and high-performance platform for the development of consumer and enterprise applications and services. The agreement also includes Ericsson’s mobile transport offerings, data-driven network management services and the latest energy-efficient products and technologies as part of a sustainable network evolution.
“Communications technology never stands still – it’s a rapidly changing environment – but as with the roll-out of fibre, we need to stay ahead of the game, and this programme will provide the transformation and leap in technology now required to meet the future demands of businesses and consumers,” said JT Group CEO Daragh McDermott.
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The upgrade programme is also designed to enable future 5G and technology ambitions in the Channel Islands to be met.
“Digital infrastructure plays an incredibly important role in our society, with communication technologies helping to address social, environmental and economic challenges all across the world,” added Kirsten Morel, deputy chief minister of Jersey, and minister for economic development. “Not only do we want islanders to have the most reliable and fastest internet possible, but we also want them to be able to access the services that new technology can provide. This investment in the next generation network by JT will do just that.”
Katherine Ainley, CEO of Ericsson UK and Ireland, said the tech company and JT shared the same passion and vision for next-generation connectivity to create new possibilities for people, businesses and society.
“We are excited to be building a network of the future together for the Channel Islands; this will deliver leading connectivity and create a platform of innovation that will power new consumer and enterprise services, advance the digitisation of industries and boost future economic growth,” she said.