Telecoms, Rates, Offers and Coverage

Telecoms, Rates, Offers and Coverage

- As of February 1st 2008, prepaid telecommunication cards for airtime sold would be subject to value-added tax at 15 per cent in Namibia. Concerns have been voiced that il will have a negative impact on economic growth and widen the digital gap within the country.

- Uganda Telecom’s subscribers base has grown by 26% in December to reach a total number of 882,000 customers last year. The growth was attributed to the changes in the company's tariffs, sales promotions and the continuous rolling out of the network in many new areas all over the country.

- In Kenya, mobile telephone service provider, Safaricom, is completing the installation of a new system at a cost of Sh1.4 billion ($20 million) aimed at improving its services. The new plateform will improve the company's capacity to offer more services besides upgrading its current pre-paid service billing system.

- MTN Uganda, has unveiled its Blackberry service, following in the footsteps of Celtel and Uganda Telecom. MTN will be offering the BlackBerry Curve 8300 at Shs767, 000 including a tax levy and a monthly charge of Shs110, 000. Its other rival Celtel sells three kinds of BlackBerry phones at between Shs965, 000 and Shs1, 120,000 plus a monthly Internet access fee of Shs88, 000, excluding a 30 per cent tax.

Uganda Telecom offers the sets at Shs1, 050,000 - Shs1, 330,000 and charges a monthly Internet access fee of Shs85, 000.

- In line with the efforts being made by the Eritrean Telecommunications Corporation to expand and upgrade telephone services across the country, the inhabitants of the semi-urban centre of Eden in Anseba region have now access to an automatic phone service.

- Mobile operator Celtel has launched its Blackberry service in Congo-Kinshasa. The service is mainly aimed at business customers.

- MobiConnect key, a new Internet service of a speed of 236 kilobytes per second has been just launched by Algeria’s mobile telephony operator Mobilis, in a bid to enable its clients to access Internet "wherever they are." "Mobilis new service has been tested in Algiers before its launch in the rest of the country.

- Vodacom South Africa has upgraded its HSDPA 3.5G mobile networks to offer peak download speeds of 3.6Mbps. The quicker service is available across Vodacom’s entire HSDPA network and customers can upgrade free of charge for the next three months. From 1 May customers will pay ZAR49 (USD6.86) a month on top of their current data tariff for the 3.6Mbps service.