Cell C's move to offer BlackBerry phones and solutions is a precursor to aggressively entering the high-end data communications arena ahead of its new fourth-generation (4G) network rollout, says Karin Fourie, Cell C's head of corporate communications.
Tomorrow, Cell C will hold a press conference during which it will detail other offerings it plans to release once its R5 billion 4G network is operational – at a date still to be determined.
Cell C, the smallest of the mobile network operators, has traditionally been aimed at the lower end of the market, while its joint venture, Virgin Mobile, has targeted the more affluent part.
However, Virgin Mobile will not offer a BlackBerry solution for the time being.
Jonathan Newman, head of marketing and strategy at Virgin Mobile, says should his firm decide to offer BlackBerry, it would strike a separate deal with manufacturer Research In Motion (RIM).
“We cannot piggyback on the Cell C deal, as RIM does not operate that way,” he says.
Vodacom and MTN have offered the BlackBerry for several years.
Fourie says the company announced in December 2009 that it would expand its network coverage and roll out a high-speed broadband offering, using HSPA+ technologies with download speeds of up to 21Mbps.
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