Safaricom to extend 4G coverage to 13 towns by year-end

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After Safaricom rolled out its 4G network in Nairobi and Mombasa, the telco plans to extend it to another 13 towns and cities by end of 2015.

The firm’s CEO Bob Collymore announced this while releasing its financial results for the period ended March 31, 2015.

Safaricom recorded a continued growth in all revenue posting a total revenue that increased by 13 per cent to Kshs 163.4 billion.

“Our 4G network is first for Kenya and will enable our customers to experience superfast home broadband and mobile data offerings. The direct impact of data on our economy has already been noted through the increasing number of businesses and services offered online. With 4G, we can deliver revolutionary services,” said Collymore.

Through the launch of the 4G network in December 2014, Safaricom became the first operator in Sub Saharan Africa to launch LTE Advanced. The LTE Advanced network offers peak speeds of up to 100Mbps, which is more than twice the speed offered on 3G technology. This makes it possible for customers to download and upload files faster, as well as enjoy buffer-free streaming of audio and video.

LTE Advanced also enables ‘Carrier Aggregation’, which will allow Safaricom customers to benefit from increased bandwidth accessible through the aggregation of different LTE spectrum bands.

Mr. Collymore also pointed out that the company had increased the population coverage of their 3G network to 69 per cent, completed the modernization of their 2G network which covers 92 per cent of the population and have connected 30 per cent of Safaricom’s base stations to the fibre network.Safaricom also noted that they had 4.3 million customers on 3G enabled devices of which 3.4 million were smartphones

”We continue to focus on our ‘Best Network in Kenya’ program with Kshs 33.7 billion invested on capital expenditure during the year, our goal being to provide the best customer experience through improving our network quality, capacity and coverage, “ he added.

Last year Safaricom had promised to offer affordable internet enabled devices by leveraging on the relationships it has with global phone manufacturers to go alongside its network deployment and promised to supply affordable 4G-enabled devices including phones, routers and modems to the market.

Safaricom already has the widest network coverage in the country, with over 3,200 base stations, nearly half of which are 3G-enabled.

Meanwhile, the phase one of National Police Network to help improve security in Nairobi and Mombasa that Safaricom is working on will be launched at the end of May 2015. “In December 2014 the Government of Kenya entrusted Safaricom to build the National Police Network in Nairobi and Mombasa. Delivery of this 4G push-to-talk network and CCTV cameras is progressing, with phase one on schedule to be launched at the end of May 2015,” concluded Bob Collymore

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