BOTSWANA'S MASCOM PLANS TO BUILD VALUE-ADDED SERVICES WITH GPRS

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According to Bill Hearmon, Red Chillies Enterprises, speaking at ACT 2005, Mascom has set up a system of selling services to churches. They can send out their Sunday sermon free to start with and get low-cost rates thereafter. Apparently company executives discussing likely services were somewhat shocked when external consultants mentioned the kinds of things that are popular in other countries: both of them are illegal in Botswana.

Instead the operator will concentrate on church-endorsed dating services and news on football with pictures and video clips. It will also offer used car sales services as the country has 10,000 expatriates whose coming and going provide a steady stream of new sales. It will also offer house sale information that can be searched by value. According to Hearmon:"GPRS with EDGE is almost as good as 3G but cheaper."