SaskTel has selected Nokia Siemens Networks to provide core network technology for its new next-generation wireless network. The agreement is a part of SaskTel’s network investment program to ensure 98% of Saskatchewan residents have access to wireless services. Already based on the latest version of HSPA+ technology, SaskTel will use a core network solution, including mobile softswitching, packet core with “direct tunnel” functionality, and harmonized subscriber management systems. The upgraded systems will complement SaskTel’s existing 3G network solutions and future-proof the carrier for a smooth transition to fourth generation technology based on the emerging, global long-term evolution standard. The network is scheduled for an initial launch mid-2010 with a targeted completion date of 2011.