Vodacom has become the first network in South Africa to offer LTE (commonly referred to as "4G") services to all its customers. LTE represents the next evolution in mobile with connection speeds many times higher than 3G, translating into faster downloads and stutter free video.
Vodacom was the first operator to launch commercial LTE services in South Africa in October 2012. The service was initially available to contract customers, but with increased LTE coverage and a much wider range of devices now available, LTE services have now also been made available to Prepaid and Top Up customers.
Speaking about this, Vodacom CEO Shameel Joosub said:
"We started out with 70 LTE capable base stations in Gauteng, and just five months on we've now got approaching 600 live LTE sites covering Johannesburg, Cape Town, Pretoria and Durban. Another 400 are planned by the end of the year.
"This is the culmination of a massive investment in high speed fibre transmission and an overhaul of our radio network countrywide. It's the reason that Vodacom's network has the widest high speed coverage in South Africa and why we're the clear choice for the best data experience."
Vodacom is investing more than R6 billion per year in South Africa, adding extensively to the network of 3G base stations as well as building LTE coverage. At current rates, the number of 3G base stations is growing at around 25% per year and is the reason that Vodacom has 50% more 3G Internet than any other operator.
All customers who have a Vodacom supported LTE capable device will be automatically provisioned for the LTE service within 24 hours of the device being registered on the network. In certain instances the settings may need to be changed directly on the device. More information is available on http://www.vodacom.co.za/, in stores, or via our 111 or 155 call centres.
A coverage map is available on http://www.vodacom.co.za/. In areas that LTE coverage is not available then the device will automatically choose the next best connection option.
Summing up, Joosub said:
"We want everyone to have access to the latest technology and fastest mobile connection, so there's no additional charge for LTE. All you'll need is a 64kb or higher SIM card and a compatible device. It's that simple."