Vodacom South Africa Goes 4G LTE
Vodacom came out with a surprise during the MyBroadband’s Annual Conference and announced that it has officially launched the first Long-Term Evolution (LTE) in South Africa.
“LTE is live today. It is officially launched in South Africa right now,” said Vodacom’s CEO Shameel Jousub.
The service is available now, but in select parts of Johannesburg with other cities to follow shortly. A coverage map is available on Vodacom’s site.
Telecom rivals, MTN, Cell C and 8ta, are all racing to launch 4G services. MTN and Cell C have both said they’ll launch commercial 4G services this year. 8ta will run a trial between November and January, with a commercial launch to follow early next year. MTN has said it wants as many as 500 sites live before it launches commercially which is a good idea.
“Vodacom was the first network in South Africa to test LTE more than two years ago, and since then we’ve been busy upgrading base stations and our fibre-optic transmission network in preparation for today,” said the CEO Shameel Joosub.
Customers with LTE-capable devices can activate 4G services by contacting Vodacom. LTE devices will go on sale in “selected” Vodacom outlets by the end of October, with priority going to existing customers of the operator. Data costs are the same as they are for 3G services.
Vodacom has joined the worlds top Telecom companies offering 4G LTE to its customers and has even rolled it out before the UK. The UK still awaits EE, a brother company to UK’s Orange network which should launch on the 30th of this month.
Source : IT News Africa