Vodacom has dropped data prices by 40%, and out-of-bundle rates by 70%, over the past 12 months.
This is according to Jorge Mendes, Vodacom’s chief officer at the company’s consumer business unit, who was speaking at the 2019 MyBroadband Conference.
Vodacom will continue to drive down data prices in South Africa, but key to this will be more spectrum being allocated to the mobile network.
The company has also created a range of smartphone contracts which run over 36 months, which provide users with a lower per-month fee.
For prices to continue to drop at mobile networks, though, these reductions must be done in a sustainable manner.
The move to drop prices must also be inclusive, and will work in tandem with Vodacom’s drive to truly understand what its customers want.
With no new spectrum allocation, however, Vodacom will have to balance these price cuts with the capital investment it makes every year in its network.
Vodacom spends billion of rand on its network infrastructure, which is a requirement to ensure it maintains a world-class network.
It is about a whole “Vodacom experience” for a user, and the customer must be taken care of at all points, added Mendes.
Huawei smartphones and network
Mendes also spoke about the Huawei “ban” being implemented by the US.
He said the Huawei brand has been impacted by the US trade war, and Vodacom has put plans in place to deal with any circumstances which arise as a result.
From a network side, this means looking at options without Huawei network hardware – which was a “scary” prospect.
From a device side, however, there has been little negative impact on smartphone sales to date.
Huawei smartphone sales have gone up in South Africa and globally since the trade war started, and Huawei has shown great resilience in the situation, said Mendes.
“Personally, I hope the situation is resolved.”