VoLTE Service Will Enhance Voice Calls in Nigeria’


Emma Okonji

The Chief Executive Officer of Smile Communications Limited, Mr. Michiel Buitelaar, has said that the introduction of Voice over Long Term Evolution (LTE) on its 4G LTE network will not only give Nigerians the best of speed in voice and data connectivity, but will also offer voice clarity and call reliability.

Buitelaar, who spoke in Lagos recently, said Smile Communications is keen at making another impressive mark with voice as a new complement to the entire package which it has for the rapidly growing Nigerian market.

“We are a bit more advanced in our operations than a good number of our competitors in all the market segments. The market is moving much faster in the broadband direction and we want Nigerians to embrace the broadband as the place to be. There are a lot of quality issues in the Nigerian market and there are a lot of opportunities for those that provide real quality, like breaking one’s call and getting immediate value from the network. The quality of our voice will definitely beat the existing benchmark in the Nigerian market,” he said.

According to him, the major focus of the company is to continue to function as a broadband provider of choice that can take people away from low speed and low quality service in a new world that craves for speed. He said the issue of quality must be upper most in the company’s strategic plans because of the fact that there are lots of small trading outfits in Nigeria that desire very fast ways of getting to their clients before others.

He explained that the provision of huge digital speed could offer his company the leeway and the added leverage to reach their destination where people can enjoy data speed and talk with voice clarity and confidence.

Buitelaar, who is optimistic that the Smile voice outreach will make another market impression that could vindicate the quality of the entire services provisions that emerge from the platform as a big basket of offerings, said the company would strive to create the Information Technology (IT) industry as a motor for digital economy, where all the other facets of Nigeria’s economy will use to make their marks in business development and service. He said because Nigeria has many people with IT knowledge, those providing services for the industry must be completely equal to the task, both in terms of skills and right frame of mind. He believes that a lot of developers of e-commerce are still emerging and other companies are embracing that with high speed connectivity service offerings.

Explaining how the Nigeria economy can leverage IT development, Buitelaar said
the best way is to create a significant IT industry to serve the growing population of technology savvy Nigerians.

“Nigeria has good number of university graduates with lots IT skills. You need to have a decent infrastructure, as well as common and reliable access to internet connectivity. Nigeria needs human skill, infrastructure. The economy requires people that can move into e-business,” Buitelaar said.

Speaking on the strategy to achieve a true VoLTE service on the Smile 4G LTE network, Buitelaar said: “Our market strategy is to be the voice provider of choice. We sell broadband data, and it is something we intend to own and we plan to capture the market in such a way that we take people away from what they are used to, which is a narrowband piece that comes with low quality, to a supper fast 4G LTE broadband platform. I think everything we do, whether data or voice, is built upon that and is a key selling point for us in the broadband market space.”