MTN boosts LTE coverage and download speeds

MTN increased its coverage and improved the customer experience on its network between January and May 2018, according to chief technology and information officer Giovanni Chiarelli.

Speaking during an event at the Gerotek test track in Pretoria, Chiarelli said that MTN is effectively bringing nine new LTE sites online every day.

In addition to building out the network, MTN has also disclosed statistics on dropped calls, data speeds, and data volumes compared to the year before.

Chiarelli said that dropped calls on MTN’s 2G network decreased 23% compared to last year, and 3G dropped calls have seen a 40% decrease.

They have also maintained consistent performance in data throughput, with 3G speeds improving by 17%, while LTE speeds increased by 2% over the past year.

Data volumes have seen a significant increase in the last twelve months, Chiarelli said. MTN’s 3G data volumes increased by 14%, while 4G data volumes went up by 79%.

The new figures from Chiarelli come after MTN’s quarterly update at the beginning of May, for the period ended 31 March.

It showed that MTN saw a 14% increase in active data users, and an increase in data revenue of 12.1%.

The growth was supported by data and digital revenue, which increased by 12.1% and 17.7% respectively.

MTN said it invested R1.7 billion in capital expenditure in South Africa during the first quarter of 2018 to sustain the ongoing improvement of its network.

Its ongoing investment resulted in improved coverage and improved performance, Chiarelli said.

MTN’s rapid network expansion is illustrated in the graphs below.

Network rollout

MTN Network rollout chart May 2018

3G and 4G population coverage

MTN Network coverage chart May 2018

Now read: Red tape is slowing down network growth – MTN and Vodacom

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MTN boosts LTE coverage and download speeds