Thandiwe Katinhimure, Business Reporter
STATE-OWNED telecommunications operator, TelOne, yesterday launched a new research laboratory at the National University of Science and Technology (Nust) in Bulawayo as part of efforts to assist development of innovation that will boost telecommunications in the country.
The new research lab was established at a cost of more than $40 000 while additional costs of sponsoring students will also be borne by TelOne.
Research is at the heart of a collaboration framework between the two institutions meant to further science learning with a bias towards Information Communication Technology (ICT). TelOne and Nust signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) supporting the working partnership in 2015.
TelOne’s marketing director Mrs Chipo Mtasa said the programme would avail sponsorship to doctorate degree students who are pursuing research relevant to the development of ICTs specifically relevant to TelOne.
“As TelOne we have been concentrating on the landline business. We realised that with the prevailing technological transformations the company will not survive based solely on the landline business.
“As a result of this we felt like Nust will be a possible partner to work with in researching for new innovations that will diversify our business model,” she said.
During the launch, Nust Pro-vice Chancellor, Professor Samson Sibanda, expressed gratitude to TelOne for choosing to partner with the university in providing excellence in research and teaching of ICTs.
“This telecommunications laboratory will go a long way in affording our researchers and scholars opportunities to assimilate knowledge and utilise it. I trust that this lab will facilitate research that will solve many problems that surround us in this digital and information era,” said Prof Sibanda.
He said the TelOne and Nust collaboration would greatly assist researchers as TelOne will provide the hardware and software to support the learning process. The objective of the collaboration is to develop and commercialise technology projects relevant to ICTs.
The Nust Technopark, a research department tasked to co-ordinate research and industrial project development, plays a key role in the project.
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