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ALGERIA

  • According to Leila Cherid's presentation at a Wireless Internet Institute workshop in May 2004, l'Autorité de Régulation de la Poste et des Télécommunications (ARPT) issued temporary authorizations to 6 ISPs for the first tests of Wi-fi in Algeria. ARPT's website says nothing about the test results, but the implication is that Wi-fi had not been allowed prior to the tests.
  • "WiFi, le haut débit sans fil" [WiFi, the high flow without wires] par Samir Ben, El Watan, 25 avril 2005. According to this article in French, everyone in Algeria is talking about Wi-fi and it is increasingly available. Even Algérie Telecom "hopes to launch Wifi services." But doubts remain about its legal status.
  • "Conditions generales d'exploitation et/ou d'etablissement de reseau(x) radioelectrique(s)," (General conditions for the exploitation and/or establishment of radio networks), ARPT.
  • "Constitution de Dossier Reglementaire pour la Creation, l'Extension ou la Modification d'un Reseau du Systeme WLL, WIFI, WIMAX ou RLAN," (Constitution of a regulatory dossier for the creation, extension or modification of a WLL, WiFi, WiMAX or RLAN network system), ARPT, April 2006, 2 pages in French. Describes the information that one must provide in order to obtain authorization for creating or modifying such networks. This includes a photocopy of the applicant's identity card and an explanation of the precise activity or "social reason" served by the network. The text ends with a warning that an incomplete dossier will be rejected.
  • "RD 20: Formulaire d'autorisation d'exploitation et/ou d'etablissement d'un reseau radioelectrique par les operateurs de WLL - WIFI - RLAN," - the form that one must use to apply for authorization to create, extend or modify a wireless local area network. The information required includes a list of all equipment, a diagram mapping the equipment's distribution, a technical description of the antenna systems, the geographic coordinates of the network, and a signed oath to obey the relevant decrees and pay spectrum taxes.
  • According to an ITU survey, Algeria is one of the countries that does not "make publicly available information on spectrum (e.g. regulations and spectrum management table, spectrum fees, etc.)".
  • "Hamzaoui Sidi Mohamed, Président de l'AAFSI: 'Nous avons besoin d'un haut conseil des technologies'," par Kamel Benelkadi, El Watan, 17 November 2005 (in French): the president of Algeria's ISP association complains about "an unfair competition of Algeria Telecom through its Djawab subsidiary, which has just launched a WiFi operation of 400,000 connections. Why are the other providers not included? It is necessary that Djawab is subjected to the same rules imposed on other ISPs..."
  • "Siemens wins in Algeria", TeleGeography's CommsUpdate, 19 March 2007: "Siemens has won a EUR7 million (USD9.3 million) contract from Algérie Télécom for the supply of wireless broadband equipment, including 12,000 wireless LAN access points, plus Wi-Fi-enabled end-user devices and WiMAX base stations. The telco plans to set up a city-wide WLAN system covering the capital Algiers which will offer wireless internet services to business users..."
  • "L'accès direct à internet, un luxe en Algérie" [Direct Internet access, a luxury in Algeria] par Faïçal Medjahed, Liberté Algerie, 19 Avril 2005 (in French).
  • "Accès à internet à haut débit SLC lance le premier réseau national privé," par Faïçal Medjahed, Liberté Algerie, 27 juillet 2005 (in French). An Algerian mobile phone operator, Smart Link Communication, is building the first private nationwide wireless IP "backbone" in the Magreb region. According to this article, their net already covers most of the capital, Algiers, and provides high-speed fixed Internet access to business customers. The network is almost certainly not unlicensed.
  • "Algeria becomes the Arab World's WiMAX pioneer," Middle East/North Africa Report, 22 April 2006: "The first commercial deployment of WiMAX in the Arab World was in Algeria. Smart Link Communication (SLC) has deployed WiMAX to provide broadband wireless services... The frequencies SLC uses for WiMAX are in the 3.5 GHz band and 5.8 GHz band. SLC's goal is to build a wireless broadband backbone covering the national territory, to develop the metropolitan broadband networks, and to set up an independent new generation telecom infrastructure... Algeria's tough and mountainous terrain makes it an ideal candidate for wireless connectivity solutions..."
  • "Algerian trains speed to wireless networking," by Eliot Beer, ITP Technology, 4 September 2006: "Algerian railways operator Société Nationale des Transports Ferroviaires (SNTF) has begun deployment of a GSM-R-based wireless networking system, the first in Africa. GSM for railways (GSM-R) is a communications technology developed for use by rail operators in Europe, based on the GSM mobile telecoms standard..."

Africa - Regional Overview