ZIMBABWE’S AFRICOM SHIFTS FROM ISM WITH NEW WIRELESS BROADBAND EQUIPMENT

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Data communication services company, Africom, has commissioned new broadband wireless equipment, making redundant its old wireless equipment. Prior to obtaining its data telecommunications licence and establishing its own public data telecommunications network, Africom was using frequencies in the Industrial, Scientific and Medical (ISM) band (2.4 GHz).

However, when it obtained its data telecommunications licence from the Posts and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) set up two years ago, Africom only paid for part of the frequency spectrum which it used to roll out data communication services utilising wireless technology. Use of licensed frequency technology is one of the conditions for the data licence that was granted by Potraz.

A spokesman for the company said Africom customers could now look forward to superior data communication services, free from the congestion that users experienced before. Potraz communications director Gideon Magodo said Africom’s initiative complied with the telecommunications laws of the land. "I am glad that Africom is taking the lead in complying. I wish them every success in their business," he said.

The Africom network, which is the first such privately-owned network in the country, allows subscribers to have access to high-speed data transmission platforms. It allows the transmission of computer data from one physical location to another, through fibre optic cables and broadband wireless channels, for such applications as internet access, file transfers and financial applications such as Point of Sale and ATM transactions. The Africom service is already available in the city centre, Grani-teside, Southerton, Kopje, Borrowdale and Avondale. It is expected to be available in Newlands and Msasa before the end of the year. Work is already under way to increase network coverage to the rest of Harare and Bulawayo.

Financial Gazette