Finnish nationwide Tetra network VIRVE comes out on top at the 2015 International Tetra Awards

Airbus Defence and Space’s main customer awarded in the ‘Best Tetra Innovation’ category 

The Finnish Tetra network VIRVE, a nationwide network deployed by Airbus Defence and Space, has won the International Tetra Awards for ‘Best Tetra Innovation’ with its “Hybrid Approach to LTE – 5 Steps to Critical Broadband”. The ceremony took place in London on 5 March. In this category, the judges were looking for products or systems that push the boundaries of current thinking and are not yet commonplace. Aimed at solutions, products and services in all sectors, it recognises examples of true ingenuity. The winner was rewarded for their clear reasoning of why the product stands out above the rest. 

“We are very proud of being the winner of this year’s Tetra Awards. The Finnish emergency and security services rely heavily on the communications systems provided through VIRVE. Tetra will remain our technology for mobile voice communications in the public safety sector for years to come, “said Jarmo Vinkvist, CEO of Suomen Virveverkko Oy. “At the same time we are looking to the future and planning how to get the most benefit from our network that will increasingly provide high speed data facilities to our users. Based on five steps, our plan looks ahead to the hybrid network that covers user needs all the way until 2035.” 

Zoltan Wirth, Head of Global Programme Delivery and Operations at Secure Land Communications at Airbus Defence and Space said: “We are delighted that VIRVE, one of our main customers, has received this innovation award, which also recognises the leading edge of our technology. A hybrid solution consisting of a secure combination of dedicated networks owned by the authorities and commercial networks is proving to be an efficient answer for a country like Finland. It points the way for other critical users to examine how they can best use radio communication and broadband data.” 

The VIRVE network is owned and operated by Suomen Virveverkko Oy, part of the State Security Networks Group. It was the world’s first nationwide Tetra technology-based public safety mobile network, introduced in 2002. It currently serves around 34,000 subscribers from all public safety and security services (police, fire, social, health and ambulance services) and armed forces in Finland and is an important element for the country’s security-related situations, guaranteeing its users uninterrupted network performance and quality of service. 

Image (from left to right): Tero Pesonen (Chairman, Critical Communications Broadband Group at TCCA), Richard Lambley (Consultant Editor of TETRA Today) and Jarmo Vinkvist (CEO of Suomen Virveverkko Oy)

Anke Sturtzel
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