Cell C LTE network launch announced

Cell C will commercially launch its LTE network on 1 October 2015.

The service has started to go live for some subscribers, many of whom posted on social media that they were able to connect to Cell C’s LTE network.

The announcement follows Cell C’s statement that it had completed its radio access network (RAN) swap project in Gauteng, and aims to complete the RAN swap in the Western Cape by November.

Cell C said it has switched all its 3G subscribers from its 1,800MHz spectrum to the 900MHz band, migrated its 2G subscribers to the 1,800 band, and all but emptied its 2,100MHz spectrum for its LTE roll-out.

The migration of all Cell C’s 3G subscribers to 900MHz raises some concerns, as this is similar to the strategy the network employed in 2010 when it first launched 3G services.

Due to the large footprint 900MHz sites can provide, it is understood that that they eventually became overloaded as more subscribers started using the service.

To improve its network quality, Cell C supplemented its 900Mhz 3G coverage with 2,100MHz sites.

Cell C allayed fears by explaining that it has built over 400 additional 900MHz 3G sites in Gauteng alone, and now uses the whole band for 3G where it previously only used part of the band.

It has also retained 5MHz of spectrum in the 2,100 band for 3G.

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Cell C LTE network launch announced