Telecoms, Rates, Offers and Coverage (briefs)

Telecoms, Rates, Offers and Coverage

- Zimbabwe, mobile operator Telecel is to release about 100 000 new lines on the market this week, an official said on Monday. Public relations officer Monica Malunda told New Ziana the release would increase subscriber base to about 350 000. Currently, Econet commands the largest percentage share of subscriber base at 60 percent,followed by NetOne.

- The Angolan mobile-phone operator Unitel plans to expand its services until the end of the current year to 150 districts of the country (almost 90 per cent of national territory).

- Telkom Kenya has announced that its mobile arm Orange Mobile has connected a million customers in its first eight months of operation. The company has invested over KES10 billion (USD134 million) in its network infrastructure and attributes its customer growth to its ‘value driven tariffs’.

- In a press release France Telecom (FT) says that from 18 May 2009, Orange will be launching a pan-African brand campaign across the majority of African countries where the brand is present unveiling its new international vision: ‘together we can do more’.

­Nokia has launched three new phones which it says are aimed at emerging markets and come preloaded with a range of Nokia's mobile internet services. The Nokia 2730 classic, Nokia 2720 fold and Nokia 7020 each come Internet-ready, and work with Nokia's range of emerging market services such as Nokia Life Tools and Ovi Mail. Prices range between EUR 55 (US$74) and EUR 90 (US$122).

- Growth in the Egyptian mobile telecoms market is expected to slow by a third this year, an analyst with EFG-Hermes has predicted. Marise Ananian, head of telecoms research at EFG-Hermes says that the country will add around 8 million new subscribers during 2009, compared to the 12 million in 2008. "We assume market saturation in Egypt will be at 80 to 85 percent (of the population).

- Zain, Africa's second-largest mobile service provider, has launched cross-border data services across East Africa and the Middle East on its One Network Platform in a bid to offer travelling customers fast and easy access to the Internet.