TELECOMS, RATES, OFFERS AND COVERAGE

Telecoms

The mobile phone company Telecel in Gabon has announced that it will invest 20 billions CFA to further expand the coverage of its network. The city of Mouila in the centre of the country has been the first to be connected to Telecel mobile network. Telecel is one of the three operator the two others being Libertis, the mobile arm of Gabon Telecom and Celtel that offer mobile phone services.

South African Vodacom is once again the cellular 3G leader with its announcement that their HSDPA offering will be commercially available from 2 April 2006. Both Vodacom and MTN have been trialing HSDPA for the past few months in a race to determine who would come out tops. As was the case with 3G, Vodacom’s customers will again be first to experience the benefits of this high speed mobile broadband service.

Telecom Namibia, announced the introduction of the Flexivoice service that is envisaged to become a value added facility for voice messaging using the company's FlexiCall cards. Current and future holders of valid FlexiCall cards can link their cards to the Flexivoice service through a once-off fee of only N$10. When a FlexiCall card user signs up for this messaging service he or she will be able to make calls to any destination or access voice messages via any fixed-line telephone, including public phones, across the country. Retrieval of messages from the Telecom Namibia network is free. To deposit a message, however, normal call charges apply.

Mozambique’s incumbent TDM introduced a national flat rate for fixed line telephony. There are no more local and long distance calls, there is only a single TDM fixed to fixed national call rate and separate fixed to mobile and international call rates. According to Salvador Adriano, Administrador Delegado, TDM: ”The main objective was to allow customers to make direct comparison between our tariffs and mobile tariffs”.