Orange Egypt, the country's second-largest mobile operator, announced on Sunday it will be ready to launch the new fourth-generation (4G) internet services after it completes experimental networking, and obtains final approval from the National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA).
The company said in a statement it is currently completing experimental networking, which is to be followed by launching the service commercially to customers in accordance with the NTRA's technical regulations and security demands.
The Orange statement comes after recent media said the NTRA had recently urged Egypt's three major telecom companies -- Orange, Vodafone and Etisalat -- to stop their experimental networking on the 4G service due to its reported disrupting effects on the quality and strength of the current service.
In October, 2016 Orange Egypt became the first mobile company in the country to acquire the new 4G internet services licence after signing a $484 million agreement with the national telecom regulator.
Orange, along with Vodafone Egypt and Etisalat, had declined in September to apply for the 4G licence under the NTRA's offered conditions.
However, the NTRA agreed to provide Orange and the other mobile operators with new terms that increase the speed of 4G to 2x10 MHz as opposed to the 2x2.5MHz to 2x5MHz initially offered.
Telecom Egypt (TE), the country’s sole landline operator, was the first operator to sign the deal with the 4G licence deal with the NTRA in August, buying a 15-year 4G mobile license.
Egypt’s 4G licencing comes as part of a long-awaited scheme to reform the country’s telecoms sector.
The 4G succeeds 3G in providing higher speed internet access for mobile phones.