MTN SA has gone live with the commercial availability of LTE (Long Term Evolution) in the Johannesburg, Pretoria and Durban regions, promising to bring the consumer faster broadband speeds and a better Internet experience.
As of 1 December 2012, South African consumers will be able to purchase LTE devices and access the revolutionary technology on the MTN network.
“Having piloted LTE for some time now, we are confident that we have made significant milestones in providing access to this technology and are happy to be able to offer our customers the LTE experience over our world-class MTN network,” said Kanagaratnam Lambotharan, chief technology officer at MTN SA.
“To date, there are a limited number of devices that offer support for multiple LTE bands including legacy 2G and 3G support.”
With this launch, MTN is offering the LTE Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9” on a MTN 2GB TopUp contract for R799.00 per month, over 12 months.
For the initial rollout, consumers will have access to LTE in various areas of:
- Pretoria – including Menlyn, Centurion, Pretoria East, Hatfield and Midrand;
- Johannesburg – Sandton, Rosebank, Fourways, Roodepoort, Fairlands, and O.R. Tambo International Airport;
- Durban – Westville, Pinetown, Kloof, Hillcrest, Tongaat, Queensburgh, Amanzimtoti King Shaka International Airport & Umhlanga.
MTN’s street level coverage map that shows areas with MTN LTE coverage can be viewed on MTN’s website by entering a street name.
“This broadband evolution offers broadband speeds of up to 70mbps and consumers can expect speeds of between 7 and 20 Mbps on average, dependent on network conditions,” MTN said in a press statement.
It is expected that from the first quarter of 2013, consumers can purchase LTE dongles and other mobile devices on Contract from selected MTN stores.
In addition to the launch of LTE, MTN has modernized over 1,600 base station sites in preparation for LTE and activated HSPA+ (High Speed Packet Access) on close to 1,000 sites during 2012.
It has re-farmed 2x 10MHz in 90% of its LTE sites which will provide faster connection speeds than other network systems which run 2x 5MHz.
The company has also made significant progress on its mobile broadband network deployment. MTN has increased its network footprint to almost a thousand 3G sites 2012 and to over 800 fibre optic cable sites in the same year.
“Our 2020 Broadband for all vision includes the provision up to 100Mbps to consumers in urban areas. MTN’s commercialisation of the technology is a quantum leap towards realising this vision,” said Lambotharan.