In line with the changes to come in the telecoms industry on 1 February, mobile operator Vodacom has announced aggressive new tariffs for its third-generation (3G) service. According to Vodacom MD Pieter Uys, the company will introduce a range of new 3G bundles next month, and will also substantially reduce the price of out-of-bundle top-ups.

“Our initial package offered subscribers a 1GB per month 3G contract, with a free Vodafone Mobile Connect 3G/GPRS data card, for R599 per month, with a top-up cost of R10 per additional Megabyte,” he says. “As of 1 February, we will reduce the out-of-bundle tariff to R2 per additional Megabyte and we will also introduce a range of smaller bundles to appeal to a wide range of consumers.”

Uys says the organisation will offer the following monthly packages: R35 for 20Mb, R110 for 75Mb, R149 for 150Mb and R200 for R250Mb; all of which can be purchased on an ad hoc basis, with users able to change their package from month to month, as it suits their needs. “Another option that will be made available for those who require extensive bandwidth will be the ability to purchase additional Gigabytes at R599 per Gigabyte,” states Uys.

“The beauty of 3G lies in the volumes, as it is a move that is taking place across the world, meaning that prices are continuously coming down, while the fact that it is a global standard means seamless international roaming for users.” He says Vodacom has not gone into the 3G game in isolation, as it has taken a long-term view of the global industry. “Remember, the European players have spent billions of euros on their 3G licences, so it is absolutely imperative they make it all work, and we are now able to be a part of this development.

“Unlike the European operators, which have reduced the cost of voice calls, but charge a lot more for video calls, we have decided to keep our call tariffs the same, but have made the rates for video calls the same as those for a normal voice call.”