Alcatel-Lucentis helping AIS, Thailand’s leading mobile service provider, to improve cellular services for residents and the country’s substantial tourist economy with the country’s first deployment of small cells technology.

Small cells deliver cellular signals in areas where existing coverage is insufficient or challenged due to interference from buildings, geography or distance from a cell tower. They also add much needed capacity in areas with large concentrations of users.

Alcatel-Lucent’s industry-leading small cells will provide AIS with an efficient and cost effective way to increase coverage and capacity for an improved customer experience – both for voice and high speed data access – by placing the radio technology closer to the users. The company is providing its 9764 Metro Cells Outdoor, together with integration and technical support for high quality and rapid deployment. It will also deploy its 5620 Service Aware Manager.

Thailand expects to see a steady growth in tourism during 2015. January saw 2.65 million people travel to the country, a year-on-year increase of 15.9 percent1. AIS is deploying small cells in popular tourist destinations and shopping malls in Thailand, as well as in urban environments and villages. This will help the service provider expand its data service faster and more economically than with conventional cellular networks, which may be more costly and take considerably more time to install.

AIS began to deploy small cells in September 2014 and 500 units have already been installed, with plans to reach 3000 in 2015. As of 2014 AIS reached 97% of the Thai population with its 3G coverage and is using small cells to help strengthen its network with much needed capacity.

Weerawat Kiattipongthaworn, Senior Executive Vice President – Operations of Advanced Info Service Public Company Limited AIS said:  “AIS needs to provide the best mobile data services in Thailand. Thanks to self-optimization features, Alcatel-Lucent’s small cell performance in a multi-vendor radio environment as well as their simplicity of deployment are allowing to meet demanding requirements. AIS is able to install very fast and deliver top quality service to AIS customers wherever they are.”

Sebastien Laurent, President, Southeast Asia West and Managing Director, Alcatel-Lucent Thailand, said: “Alcatel-Lucent is very proud to partner with AIS as the requirements are very diverse and innovative. To enable various business models, AIS uses Alcatel-Lucent’s entire LightRadio© portfolio ranging from home cells, enterprise cells as well as outdoor cells. Alcatel-Lucent small cells are now deployed in Bangkok Metropolitan Area as well as in the rest of Thailand, connected to any Ethernet or Fiber access points.”