Lucent Technologies recently announced today that it has signed contracts worth more than US$20 million with Fujian PTA of the China Telecom to expand the carrier's Personal Handyphone System networks in Fuzhou, Xiamen and Quanzhou.

Fujian will upgrade its existing 5ESS® network with hardware and software that will be the first deployment of Lucent's 5E-XC? High Capacity Switch outside North America.

The contracts mark the seventh expansion of PHS systems in these cities to accommodate rapid subscriber growth since the initial deployment in early 2001. After the latest expansion, the total capacity for the three cities will be 2.3 million subscribers.

This version of the 5E-XC? switch more than triples the capacity of the previous switch in networks outside North America, simplifies network configuration and dramatically cuts power consumption and space required. Fujian PTA also will deploy a 5E-XC? module that provides advanced operations, administration, management and provisioning support with an Internet Protocol (IP) interface, enabling, for example, a customer to rapidly and more cost effectively download software upgrades.

In addition, Fujian will deploy a new Lucent PHS feature that enables Short Message Services (SMS) messages to be sent across mobile, fixed wireless and wireline networks. The SMS interworking feature is one of five new PHS enhancements Lucent announced today (see today's 5E-XC? Switch announcement).

"After this expansion, we will have grown from the initial 230 thousand subscribers in early 2001 to 2.3 million subscriber capacity with the 5ESS®-based PHS systems in Fuzhou, Xiamen and Quanzhou. The coverage now extends from urban to rural areas, and serves more than 1.8M subscribers," said Mr. JianXiang Duan, vice general manager of Fujian PTA, China Telecom. "The 5ESS®-based PHS system has become one of our key businesses. With Lucent Technologies as our main supplier and partner, we will continue to deliver high network performance, new products and value added services for our subscribers."

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