Third mobile operator Cell C has connected the first city – Port Elizabeth (PE) – to its new 4Gs network.
It has committed to a network speed of 21Mbps from day one and aims for 42Mbps within the next six to eight months. Speaking at the launch event this morning, Cell C CEO, Lars Reichelt, says average global broadband speeds are currently at 7.94Mbps; however, the average speed in SA (across fixed and mobile networks) is 2.72Mbps.
Trials of the network have yielded average speeds of between 5Mbps and 6Mbps, with regular peaks of over 10Mbps, noted Reichelt. He argued that these tests take a number of factors into consideration and that the network would live up to Cell C's commitment to deliver 21Mbps.
“We are not network gods, we are human beings and we will do the best we can do,” he noted.
Reichelt added that the broadband play would become an integral part of Cell C's strategy going forward. “There is a big vacuum in data offerings in this country and Cell C sees this as a massive growth area.”
The operator is in the implementation phase of this strategy and Reichelt explained that PE was chosen as the first city, as the company considered it big enough to be a challenge, but not too big that it would be unmanageable.
He said the network currently covers 65% of the PE metropolitan population and has committed to 99% coverage by the end of the year.
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