mobiles

Vodacom to Connect 250 000 Homes

Vodacom plans to connect 250 000 homes and businesses to fibre broadband over the next three years.

The company announced that it has signed on Alcatel-Lucent to build a ‘gigabit passive optical networking (GPON) solution’ in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town and Durban.

Vodacom says the mobile network says it plans to reach about 150 000 homes and 100 000 business within the next three years.

Wi-Fi Hotspots for the Disadvantaged

The technological advancement in South Africa in terms of the digital device has made Telkom payphones review their public phones and introduce the Wi-Fi hot spots at a radius of 10 metres.

In 1994, only 15 percent of South Africans had access to telephony, thus payphones were of more help to the citizens.

The major reason for this project to be launched is to help citizens that are disadvantaged in terms of internet access.

Google’s Low Cost Smartphone Announced

Google has announced that it is working on a low-cost smartphone aimed at emerging markets as part of an initiative called Android One.

Google senior vice president, Sundar Pichai, points out that the Android-powered handset will be built with a basic set of features including FM radio, have a screen slightly smaller than five inches (12.7 centimetres) and be priced at R1 000).

Free Wi-Fi at South African Taxis

The South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) has announced that it will be providing free wi-fi to commuters in taxis and around taxi ranks.

According to reports, while the project has been spearheaded by the taxi association, it is being implemented through a collaboration between Telkom.

Telkom will be providing the connections and Wi-Taxi South Africa will be responsible for the infrastructure.

ICASA Reviews Proposed New Call Termination Rates

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) says it has started the process of reviewing its proposed new call termination rates.
 
ICASA spokesperson, Paseka Malekathe, says in order to do the process in a transparent and fair manner, questionnaires will be sent to every licensee to seek information for the review.
 
ICASA, which was given six months by the court to amend its regulations, has given the licensees are required to submit responses to ICASA by 13 June 2014.
 

SA Has A 'Right' to Cheap Data

According to Duncan Alfreds, data cost remains a barrier to many South Africans accessing the Internet and reducing that cost should be the priority, an industry insider insists.

In his article titled ‘SA has a 'right' to cheap data’, Alfreds echoes Kevin Hurwitza, Wonga.com chief executive officer’s view that, "Access to cost-effective data should be a basic right to consumers, not a luxury."

Education 'Key' to Open Wi-Fi Networks

South African cities are engaged in the process of rolling out public Wi-Fi hotpots in an effort to make high speed mobile data freely available.
 
According to a security consultant at Fortinet, Jonas Thulin, states that the new service though, could be used by criminals to entrap users who are unused to the environment.
 
"While access for all is a commendable goal, there are security risks in extending free and low-cost Wi-Fi access in public places," explains Thulin.
 

Massive Increase in SA Smartphone Purchases

The numbers from South Africa's largest mobile phone retailer show that a massive shift is happening in the smartphone market.

The shift from feature phones to smartphones in South Africa is happening faster than anyone could have imagined just a few months ago.

Sales figures from the country’s largest mobile phone retailer, PEP stores, reveal a radical transformation in the phone-buying habits of the low- and middle-income segments of South Africa’s population.

ICASA Challenged Over Call Rates

Cellphone network operators, MTN and Vodacom, will continue to challenge the introduction of new asymmetrical call termination rates in the Johannesburg High Court.

However, Kate Hofmeyer, for Cell C, believed that if MTN and Vodacom were granted interim relief through the court suspending the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s (ICASA) 2014 regulations, this would result in the market being unregulated.

Call termination rates are rates that mobile operators have to pay one another for calls to other networks.

Mobile Data on the Increase in SA

According to a report, mobile data traffic in South Africa is expected to have a compound annual growth of 53 percent in the next five years.

The Cisco Visual Networking Index Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast for 2013 to 2018, points out that mobile data traffic will reach an annual run rate of two exabytes (one quintillion bytes) by 2018.

The report also states that 60 percent of mobile connections in South Africa will be ‘smart’ connections by 2018, up from 20 percent in 2013.

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