Nokia extends fixed-line agreement with Chorus ahead of UFB2

Nokia has signed on for a further three years to provide end-to-end management of Chorus' fixed-line legacy network and its in-construction UFB and UFB2 fibre networks.

Nokia has announced extending its managed services agreement with Chorus for a further three years, with the agreement covering Chorus' legacy networks as well as the telecommunications operator's rollout of both stages of the New Zealand government's ultra-fast broadband (UFB) network across the country.

Under the agreement, Nokia said it will continue managing and enhancing network operations across Chorus' fixed-line network using real-time service management capabilities to reduce downtime and increase network performance.

The contract will include Chorus' work on building out the second stage of the New Zealand government's UFB network, announced in January, which will extend the fibre network to 169 new areas and 203,000 premises across the country.

UFB2 will begin construction in July and will connect regions throughout Ashburton, Auckland, Blenheim, Christchurch, Dunedin, Gisborne, Greymouth, Hamilton, Invercargill, Levin, Masterton, Napier, Nelson, New Plymouth, Oamaru, Palmerston North, Paraparaumu, Queenstown, Rotorua, Taupo, Tauranga, Timaru, Wellington, Whakatane, and Whangarei, among others.

Chorus' rollout of the UFB1 fibre network was 61 percent complete as of December 31, with 505,000 premises passed and 681,000 customers able to connect.

Chorus is also intending to take part in the second stage of the government's Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI2), which extends fixed-line coverage to regional areas.

"Chorus welcomes the government's announcement today about the next stage of the process to extend the Rural Broadband Initiative," a spokesperson for Chorus told ZDNet last year.

"We will go through the request for proposal and put in a submission."

In May last year, Nokia also extended its contract with Chorus to update its broadband infrastructure across New Zealand by incorporating fibre-based Gigabit Passive Optical Network (GPON) technology and VDSL2 copper network technology.

Under the extended contract, Nokia will deliver its Intelligent Services Access Manager (ISAM) fibre-to-the-node (FttN) access node, ISAM FX high-capacity fibre platform, and ISAM SX-16 VDSL2 micro-node. Its IP routing and optical transport tech involves use of its Service Router, Extensible Routing System (XRS) Routing Technology, Photonic Service Switch (PSS), and Service Aware Manager.

Nokia will also provide end-to-end network design, integration, testing, and operation support.

Nokia's contract extensions with New Zealand's incumbent fixed-line operator build on the original contract signed between Chorus and Alcatel-Lucent prior to Nokia's €15.6 billion acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent.

The five-year managed services contract between the two was announced in October 2015, with Alcatel-Lucent to monitor and analyse Chorus' fibre and copper networks.

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