Huawei: Making connections

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Earlier this month, leading ICT solutions provider Huawei was awarded the 2015 Kenyan Frost & Sullivan Competitive Strategy Innovation and Leadership Award. Here we find out more about the company’s work in the communication and transport sectors.

Customer-centric innovation and strong partnerships are at the heart of Huawei’s philosophy. The company’s products and solutions have been deployed in over 170 countries, and serve over a third of the world’s population, making it one of the best-known ICT brands worldwide.

Huawei’s strategy in the enterprise domain focuses on close cooperation and integration with partners to deliver a wide range of highly efficient customer-centric ICT solutions and services that are based on a deep understanding of customer needs. In line with  the strategy,  a broad portfolio of innovative ICT solutions that cater to global vertical industry and enterprise customers across government and public sector, finance, transportation, energy, large enterprises and small and midsize enterprises (SMEs) are offered  which covers enterprise networking, unified communications & collaboration (UC&C), cloud computing & data center, enterprise wireless, network energy and infrastructure services.

Staying secure

The renowned Huawei safe city solution focuses  on assisting  governments with the implementation of information and communications technologies (ICT) platforms that  ensures the development of secure, stable, and efficient social and economic environments. Convergent command, city surveillance and road safety are key aspects of the solution which is  implemented using the following technologies: intelligent  video surveillance, video conference, eLTE bandwidth trunking, unified communications and GIS systems to achieve visual dispatching, efficient command. In addition, the cloud computing and agile networks solutions implement a secure, scalable cloud surveillance platform and an intelligent video big data analysis platform.  These solutions could significantly improve the level of municipal management, gathering information from around city and integrating it together, thereby allowing emergency personnel to process incidents quickly, accurately and proactively. Government agencies will also be able to obtain incident information and deploy rapid response to various urban security matters promptly.

The solution has just been deployed in Kenya, covering Nairobi and Mombasa. It is linking over 1800 surveillance cameras with 195 bureaus and 7,600 police officers. It was for this that the company was awarded the Frost & Sullivan Competitive Strategy Innovation Award in October.

“Authorities can conduct panoramic video surveillance of Nairobi’s urban centre, as well as maintain a highly agile command and dispatch setup that runs on satellite-based global positioning system (GPS) and software-based geographic information system (GIS),” said Frost & Sullivan analyst Joanita Roos at the time.

The solution also provides a video cloud storage platform, analytics tools and protection against cyber-attacks.

There have been impressive successes in other fields, too. Earlier this year, Huawei announced a partnership with Siemens Convergence Creators to deploy South Africa’s first Global System or Mobile Communication — Railway (GSM-R) for the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA).

In some shape or form, this project has been in the works since 2013, when Huawei was awarded the contract for the metros of Gauteng, Western Cape and Kwa-Zulu Natal.

The project includes integration towards the existing MPT network, and teaming up with Siemens has allowed Huawei to provide a complete end-to-end solution that combines Huawei’s GSM-R solution with Siemens CVC’s dispatching and voice recording technology.

“Huawei and Siemens Convergence Creators have cooperated for many years in the fields of GSM-R and eLTE development, with dispatching and voice recording systems a crucial part of Huawei’s GSM-R solution,” said general manager David Xu, speaking back in July.

The GSM-R is a digital voice and data train-to-ground communication system considered the international wireless standard for railway applications. The secure platform facilitates voice and data communication between railway operational staff, including drivers, dispatchers, shunting team members, train engineers, and station controllers. It delivers great features such as group calls, voice broadcast, location-based connections, and call pre-emption in case of an emergency.

The flexible architecture of the GSM-R Dispatcher solution will enable PRASA to find and manage field staff and assets directly from its control centres. For PRASA staff, this means more efficient communication. For passengers, it means a more efficient service.

The GSM-R Voice Recording System will be used in a railway telephony system to record in a safe and redundant way the operational communication, especially between dispatchers, train staff and railway maintenance workers and shunters.

This recording will be used later for liability matters and post-incident analysis in case of railway accidents.

“Due to high performance indicators demonstrated by the solution in our integration labs, we are confident that PRASA will benefit greatly from the design offered by Huawei and Siemens Convergence Creators,” explains Rose Moyo, Huawei Enterprise wireless solutions director for the Eastern and Southern Africa region.

“At the moment there is a strong interest in revitalising the railway sector in the region. In the endeavour to facilitate an efficient and reliable railway service that helps to integrate the region, there is need for common standards and procedures, particularly in terms of infrastructure including the operation rail communication system,” explains Moyo.

“We will continue to encourage the rail operators in the region to adopt the system as there would be a number of benefits in the adoption of a standardised system such as GSM-R.  Lessons can be drawn from regions that have adopted the standard with the goal of achieving interoperability using a single communication platform which can also be replicated.”