Published On: Thu, May 19th, 2016

MTN calls for speedy allocation of spectrum

Mteto Nyati, Chief Executive Officer of MTN South Africa .Photo -GIFT NDOLWANE

Mteto Nyati, Chief Executive Officer of MTN South Africa .Photo -GIFT NDOLWANE

JOHANNEBSURG, (CAJ News) – MTN has appealed to regulators to speed up the allocation of radio spectrum to enable operators improve their service offerings.

Speaking at a press event in Johannesburg, Mteto Nyati, Chief Executive Officer of MTN South Africa, said 98 percent of subscribers are served by just 40 percent of the allocated spectrum, which is exerting a constricting pressure on the networks that are built on frequencies that are not suitable for data intensive applications.

“The rapid adoption of smart devices, which compliments government’s vision of bridging the digital divide and universal access to broadband services, has increased traffic on our networks substantially, and has rendered access to spectrum more urgent,” said Nyati.

He added that the growth of data intensive services such as video is exacerbating traffic and adding pressure on the already clogged networks.

Nyati said that MTN would continue to engage with its principals to speed up the auction of spectrum, as access to spectrum forms part of MTN’s ongoing efforts to improve customer experience.

“The re-farming of existing spectrum to cater for LTE technology is an interim measure, as access to the high demand spectrum is the prerequisite for the provision of high performance networks and seamless network experience,” said Nyati.

Nyati said lack of high-demand radio spectrum had compelled MTN to re-farm existing spectrum to cater to the pent-up demand for digital services, which operators cannot continue to meet without the allocation of the high-demand spectrum.

He said that despite a challenging operating environment, MTN has made encouraging progress in meeting its strategic objectives, namely returning to growth, transforming customer experience and overhauling people engagement.

Nyati meanwhile said MTN had prioritised transforming customer experience as one of the key differentiators that will set MTN apart from the competition.

To that end, MTN embarked on an aggressive network rollout which saw the operator increasing spend by 92,9 percent last year and adding 966 2G sites, 1 593 largely co-located 3G sites and 3 148 LTE sites to its network.

Looking ahead, Nyati announced that MTN would be ramping up its full service ICT offering through MTN Business, delivering high-speed broadband to households and businesses, driving LTE and 3G handset distribution across all segments and decreasing 2G distribution share across all channels.

CAJ News

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