MTN Plans South African LTE Launch by Year-End

MTN has outlined its plans to switch on its LTE service by the end of this year, with around 400-500 base stations having been upgraded by the time the network is switched on.

At a press conference, the company’s CTO, Kanagaratnam Lambotharan said that the company has already upgraded 250 base stations for LTE services by reframing its 1800 MHz spectrum. The company aims to have 10 Mhz of its 1800Mhz bands released for the LTE service eventually.

The 4G service will be initially available in Durban, Johannesburg and Pretoria. Coverage in Cape Town may be limited though due to difficulties in reframing the radio spectrum there.

The company is also still building out its existing network coverage, with GSM services now reaching 98.6% of the population and 3G services reaching 65% of the country’s population.

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