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Vodacom taps Andrew for World Cup wireless coverage

Next year’s World Cup in South Africa will see ten stadia in use during the competition. Five of them will see deployment of Andrew’s indoor wireless system, the ION-M, which has been chosen by Vodacom, South Africa’s largest cellular operator.

Andrew, through its South African affiliate company Systems Designs, has been chosen by Vodacom, South Africa’s largest cellular operator, to supply the ION (Intelligent Optical Network) fibre distributed antenna system )its indoor wireless coverage and capacity solution) at five of the ten South African stadia to be used in the 2010 World Cup.

The ION-M, which is an optical distributed system, supports current GSM 900/1800 and UMTS frequency bands as well as next-generation LTE and WiMAX networks. The ION-M’s flexible design and high power output can be customised to the unique spatial requirements of each stadium, helping overcome signal interference. The system’s basic architecture involves fibre-optic and coaxial cables, master and remote units, and other subsystem products that receive and transmit signals from dedicated operator base stations to customer handhelds throughout the facility.

The five South African stadia for which Andrew is supporting Vodacom with ION-M equipment are Moses Mabida in Durban, Coca-Cola Park in Johannesburg, Vodacom Park in Bloemfontein, Mbombela in Nelspruit, and Loftus in Pretoria. System installation at three of the stadia was completed in time for the recently-concluded 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup. Andrew expects all stadia to be completed in advance of the start of the World Cup on June 11, 2010.

Andrew’s Dennis Mugwanya, Vice-President of Sales and Marketing, Africa, stated, “The Confederations Cup matches showed how important reliable voice and data connectivity are to spectators, as they share the fun and passion of the matches with each other and friends in distant locations via wireless texting, calling and multimedia.” 

* Andrew offers a portfolio of coverage and capacity products that includes Node repeaters, indoor antennas, and passive devices in addition to its ION optical distribution systems and Radiax radiating cable.. The company has over 15 years of experience in designing, testing, installing and managing complicated wireless signal distribution systems for metropolitan railways, tramways, and other large-sized construction projects. Andrew was previously chosen to provide coverage and capacity for the Turin, Italy underground in advance of the 2006 Winter Olympics and for many of the 2006 World Cup venues in Germany. Other projects on high-speed rail systems include ICE in Germany and ones in Taiwan, Spain, Switzerland, and Norway.

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