Vodacom spent R430 million on network upgrades in the Eastern Cape

Vodacom has invested more than R430 million in network upgrades for the Eastern Cape.

The company said it allocated a large portion of the investment to provide broadband connectivity in rural areas.

“As part of Vodacom’s purpose-led strategy to extend digital inclusivity, we now have 400 base station sites in rural areas in the Eastern Cape, introducing 4G connectivity to more than 19 villages this past financial year,” said Vodacom Eastern Cape managing executive Mpumelelo Khumalo.

According to Vodacom, broadband infrastructure has densified in 30 urban regions in the Eastern Cape, and 5G rolled out in two major metros.

Vodacom said that by expanding connectivity in urban and rural areas, its 4G network covers 86% of the province.

The company plans to expand its 4G and 5G coverage in the region next year.

Vodacom explained the challenges associated with load-shedding, vandalism, and theft in the region.

The company explained that it had spent R43 million on backup power and security solutions to reduce the impact of power cuts and malicious activities.

Heavy storms at the end of 2021 also caused extensive damage to network infrastructure, resulting in extended power outages and limited access to connectivity for many Eastern Cape residents.

“Despite these challenges, Vodacom Eastern Region’s network teams continue to work against the odds to limit any service disruptions,” Khumalo said.

“These efforts, along with our significant investment into network capacity and coverage, ensures our Eastern Cape customers receive the best quality network performance under increased demand.”

“In fact, we have seen an 19.8% growth in our customer base, with our voice and data speeds outranking our competitors in independent benchmarking and customers voting us as the network of choice in a Net Promoter Score survey,” she added.

Vodacom has also partnered with the Eastern Cape Department of Health to provide Internet of Things solutions to manage Covid-19 data. It explained that this was because health is a focus area for the region.

Now read: Vodacom and MTN could soon be forced to collect your biometric data

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Vodacom spent R430 million on network upgrades in the Eastern Cape