Internet News - In Brief


* MTN South Africa has announced plans to build a 3G network in the 900MHz band, TechCentral reports. MTN expects significant growth in demand for broadband services outside of South Africa’s main cities over the next few years. By utilising the 900MHz bandwidth, MTN hopes to provide wider coverage with fewer base stations, reducing costs.  MTN South Africa reports that it has concluded a detailed UMTS-900 test, involving 20 base stations in the Limpopo province, and has ascertained that the technology delivers a 30% increase in coverage compared to 3G delivered at 2.1GHz. MTN’s 3G network currently covers 48% of South Africa, but the imminent deployment is expected to expand coverage dramatically. The deployment will be done on a region-by-region basis, beginning in the communities closest to the cities, ‘rather than those that are completely in the hinterland’

* Accra — Ghana has been ranked number one in Africa for internet speed, thanks to Vodafone Ghana's launch of its 4MB speed capacity, which is West Africa's fastest consumer internet cafes broadband package. With the introduction of the high speed broadband services last year, Vodafone has single handedly pushed Ghana's internet speed rankings to number one in Africa, a move of 14 places up the ladder.

* Dar Es Salaam — Zantel has launched new prepaid internet packages and bundles to suit the needs and usage of all its customers. This is in line with Zantel's promise to add more value to its internet packages by offering high speed internet connectivity at the best rates available in the market. The new internet packages on Z Connect have increased capacity from 200MB to 250MB for the same cost. In addition to increasing capacity the packages are now available on a daily, weekly and monthly subscription thereby giving the customer more affordable choices.

* Uganda Record blogger Timothy Kalyegira has been arrested by the police and accused of sedition. The reason? he published an article in The Uganda Record hinting darkly at the possibility that it could be the Uganda government, not the Somali militant group Al-Shabaab, that was behind the July 11 World Cup Finals night terrorist bombs in Kampala that killed nearly 80 people. He is not the first blogger to be arrested. In January 2009 Malecela Peter Lusinge, a Tanzanian-British citizen was arrested when he visited the country for publishing a doctored photo of Tanzania President Jakaya Kikwete in a compromising sexual situation.