Econet to embark on major data network upgrade

Econet to embark on major data network upgrade
Published: 13 July 2017 (529 Views)
Econet Wireless Zimbabwe, which controls 98 percent of the Long Term Evolution data customer market share, has announced a major data network upgrade that will see the mobile network market leader achieve 100 percent 3G coverage across the country by the end of this year.

Long Term Evolution refers to the generation of network technology. The third generation network, known as 3G, is the oldest technology of the group. 4G is the fourth generation data network

Announcing the developments at the company's Msasa head office in Harare yesterday, Econet Chief Executive Officer Douglas Mboweni said the upgrade exercise had already started.

"The upgrade started in March this year, at the beginning of our new financial year, and should be completed by the end of this calendar year", said Mr Mboweni.

"We are essentially ensuring that each and everyone of our existing 2G sites countrywide – in towns and in rural areas – are upgraded to 3G sites" he said, adding that the upgrade had already begun in parts of the country.

"Matabeleland, Bulawayo and Harare provinces are now already complete, with all sites in these provinces on 3G as we speak," he said "We are pleased to let our customers know that in the coming few months, accessing our Smart Data Network from anywhere in the country will be so much easier, particularly in the rural and farming communities" said Mr Mboweni.

Econet Wireless has the widest geographical mobile network coverage in Zimbabwe, covering 82 percent of the population. The latest data from the industry regulator POTRAZ (Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe) shows that Econet has a total of 4.092 base stations (or 52.2 percent share of total mobile infrastructure), in comparison to industry peers NetOne, which has a total of 2.691 (or 34.5 percent), and Telecel, with 1.025(13.2 percent) base stations.

The company leads the country's three mobile network operators (MNOs) in data network coverage, with more coverage than the other two MNOs put together. It has 1.192 3G base stations (51.2 percent), compared to NetOne's 771 3G base stations (33.1 percent) and Telecel's 364 3G base stations (15.6 percent).

Econet, which reported 10,2 million connected customers at the end of February 2017, also leads in LTE (or 4G) network coverage, with 499 LTE sites (63.7 percent) to NetOne's 284 LTE sites (36.3 percent). It supports 269.000 LTE customers on its LTE infrastructure, compared with NetOne, which supported 2,165 LTE customers as at the end of March 2017.

According to the POTRAZ report, Telecel has not yet deployed LTE technology. The MNO was recently acquired by the government. Confirming the Econet upgrade, MrKezitoMakuni, the company's Technical Director, said the upgrade exercise would see Econet cover most of the country's population with 3G technology.

"Upon completion, we will have covered close to 82 percent of the population with fast and reliable 3G and LTE coverage" said MrMakuni. "Our customers will be able to enjoy our data products and services at much faster access and browsing speeds wherever they are and wherever they go in Zimbabwe," he said.

A 3G (or Third Generation) data network is the typical mobile broadband network with Internet download speeds of up to 100 times that of a 2G data network (GPRS or EDGE network), and it works best on smartphones.

"With most populated areas covered, going forward we will be focusing on the customer experience of our subscribers, ensuring that they get impeccable quality of service wherever they are", said Mr Makuni.

Econet has invested over $1.3 billion in the Zimbabwean economy since 2009.It has created over 20.000 jobs directly and indirectly, through resellers and distributors of its wide variety of products and services, that include, among others, voice products, data services and EcoCash – the popular mobile money transfer service.

- the herald

 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

#Mugabe has summoned cabinet ministers

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 372 Views

#Zimbabwe broadcaster on stand-by for address by military

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 273 Views

MDC-T to decide on #Mugabe impeachment Tuesday

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 172 Views

It is a no-win situation for Mugabe

by Sam Wezhira | 20 November 2017 | 221 Views

Tsvangirai has little faith in Mnangagwa saving Zimbabwe

by AFP | 20 November 2017 | 200 Views

Coup directors get hold of Jonathan Moyo's twitter account?

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 279 Views

Mugabe must stop embarrassing himself - PDP

by PDP | 20 November 2017 | 155 Views

#Zimbabwe junior military ranks grumble about unfinished mission

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 236 Views

Mugabe, 'leave state house' or we go back to the streets

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 190 Views

Dealing with Zimbabwe's fault lines

by Lawrence Fengu | 20 November 2017 | 80 Views

MDC-T deeply alarmed

by Morgan Tsvangirai | 20 November 2017 | 223 Views

'When they took Dzamara more activists were born'

by Simbarashe Mwandipenda | 20 November 2017 | 75 Views

14 elephants found dead

by Simbarashe Sithole | 20 November 2017 | 112 Views

Stakeholders must work together to curb healthcare fraud

by Agencies | 20 November 2017 | 69 Views

'I suspect he is a gay,' says wife

by Staff Reporter | 20 November 2017 | 127 Views

Zanu-PF plans march to Mugabe's residence

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 169 Views

Mugabe's impeachment 'can be done in 24 hours'

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 118 Views

Has the military 'comported to the dictates and mores of constitutionalism'?

by Senator David Coltart | 20 November 2017 | 91 Views

Kenneth Kaunda 'sent to persuade Mugabe' - report

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 165 Views

Tsvangirai 'want inclusive government'

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 76 Views

Tajamuka calls for another Zimbabwe final Shut down on Wednesday

by Stephen Jakes | 20 November 2017 | 50 Views

High court hears Magamba's challenge of police seizure of computers

by Stephen Jakes | 20 November 2017 | 55 Views

Zanu-PF MPs summoned

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 51 Views

Teachers demand Dokora be fired

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 63 Views

Mnangagwa takes over Zanu-PF

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 51 Views

Mliswa reprimand opposition over Zanu PF betrayed them claims

by Stephen Jakes | 20 November 2017 | 42 Views

#Zimbabwe army to announce way forward on Mugabe

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 66 Views

People salutes the ZDF but still calls for Zanu-PF to go

by Fanuel Chinowaita | 20 November 2017 | 203 Views

Zimbabweans worried about nation's fate

by AP | 20 November 2017 | 175 Views

Why Matebeleland must not celebrate!

by Dr Brilliant Sigabade Mhlanga | 20 November 2017 | 301 Views

Impeachment motion by Zanu-PF Chief Whip in Parliament - details

by Mr. Lovemore Matuke | 20 November 2017 | 664 Views

MLF calls on Ramaphosa to help with arrest of Mnangagwa

by Andrea Sibanda, Secretary General | 20 November 2017 | 323 Views

Mnangagwa 'will reach out to Britain'

by Staff reporter | 20 November 2017 | 257 Views

Mthwakazi Republic Party to demonstrate in Jo'burg

by Stephen Jakes | 20 November 2017 | 79 Views