South Africa: Orange quietly launches WiFi foray

Orange Horizons MD Sébastien Crozier says Orange is working hard to grow its presence in South Africa via WiFi hotspots.

French telecoms operator Orange has quietly launched a WiFi pilot in South Africa, in a move that marks another step towards its ultimate ambition of becoming a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO).

Last week, as part of a media event hosted by Orange's business arm Orange Business Services (OBS), in Cape Town, ITWeb journalists were transported from the airport in an Orange-branded vehicle, displaying a panel reading "WiFi on board".

Source: ITWeb

Every1Mobile creating and connecting communities of mobile phone users

Africa’s number of mobile phone subscribers is the fastest growing in the world, according to a report released last year by GSMA, an organisation that represents mobile operators globally. Although mobile penetration still remains low when compared to other regions in the world, the platform offers opportunities for multinationals and brands looking to connect with the continent’s growing consumer base and their increasing spending power.

One company that is building a business around this opportunity is Every1Mobile, established in 2010 with offices in the UK and Cape Town.

Source: How we Made it in Africa

Africa: Thuraya Partners With Airtel to Bring Mobile Satellite Connectivity to 17 African Countries

Satellite services provider Thuraya Telecommunications has partnered with Bharti Airtel International to provide Airtel Africa customers with mobile satellite products and services across 17 countries in Africa.

The partnership will provide Airtel Africa customers with voice and broadband connectivity via Thuraya's satellite network across the continent's most remote areas. As part of the agreement, which takes effect from May, Airtel Africa will sell Thuraya's products and airtime packages at its retail outlets and through their enterprise account team.

Source: CIO (Nairobi)

Telecoms – In Brief

-  Airtel Burkina Faso, the local mobile business of Indian telecoms group Bharti Airtel, has applied to the Regulatory Authority for Electronic Communications and Posts (ARCEP) for a licence to deploy and operate a 4G network in the country. Fasozine quotes Airtel Burkina Faso’s CEO Herve-Olivier Njapoum as saying that the cellco aims to promote the implementation of new services and solutions to improve the lives of local citizens.

Cell C could be in deep, deep trouble: report

Cell C’s ability to pay back its debt could be under threat, should The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) fail to implement its new call termination regulations. This is according to Bloomberg, citing court documents.

Cellphone network operators MTN and Vodacom are challenging the introduction of new asymmetrical call termination rates.

These are the rates operators have to pay one another for calls to other networks.

Icasa wants to implement a set of regulations that will see these rates drop to 10 cents a minute in 2016.

Source: Business Tech

Hatif taps Satcom for satellite backhaul

EMC Satcom Technologies, a division of Emerging Markets Communications, has announced an agreement with Hatif Libya to deliver a satellite network capable of providing telecoms backhaul in major cities, as well as serving oil, gas, banking and government customers at 30 additional sites across the country.

According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, state-owned Hatif Libya currently holds the responsibility for providing fixed line voice telephony in Libya, after replacing the General Posts and Telecommunications Company (GPTC) in 2008.

Source: Telegeography

Zambia to issue fourth mobile licence

The Zambian government has said the country’s fourth mobile licence will be issued soon after implementing the digital migration project.

The minister of communications and transport Yamfwa Mukanga said the Zambian government has made progress in clearing the way for the fourth mobile phone operator but that the licence of the operator will only be issued after the digital migration project.

Source: ItWeb Africa

MTN May Sell Off Nigerian Mobile Tower Networks

Talks of South African telecoms company, MTN’s sale of its mobile tower networks in Africa, which is in line with the company’s asset optimization plan, have again emerged with its Nigerian towers being next in line.

The telecoms company, which has presence in a number of high growth markets in Africa, has been selling off its towers within the region in line with a strategy to reduce infrastructural costs.

Source: Ventures

Telecoms – In Brief

- Nigeria's MTN has announced an expanded managed services agreement with Aviat Networks.

- Indian-backed cellco Airtel Gabon has launched the West African country’s first commercial UMTS-based 3G mobile data services, over a W-CDMA/HSPA+ network, using the ‘3.75G’ marketing banner. According to Airtel Gabon’s website, three categories of high speed mobile internet/data packages are offered over the new 3G network: ‘Internet Packages’, ‘CPT Internet’ and device-specific ‘BlackBerry’ tariffs.

Zambian Networks Face Lose of License if Quality is Not Improved

Zambia's government has issued a warning to the mobile networks and threatened to revoke their operating licenses if they do not improve the quality of their service.

The out-going minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, Emmanuel Chenda said that is not acceptable for customers to be paying for a service that is inconsistent and regularly dropping calls.

"It is for this reason that consumers must demand fairness and transparency in the billing system and also protection from billing fraud," Chenda said.

Source: Cellular News
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