MTN urges LTE spectrum allocation

2012-11-16 14:36
The allocation of spectrum is critical to the mobile operators rolling out a faster mobile network and should be awarded to established players, MTN has asserted. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

The allocation of spectrum is critical to the mobile operators rolling out a faster mobile network and should be awarded to established players, MTN has asserted. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - The allocation of spectrum is critical to the mobile operators rolling out a faster mobile network and should be awarded to established players, MTN has asserted.

"Spectrum is a critical component to a full network rollout and the allocation of the spectrum is critical to mitigate the risks both operators face now in the rollout of LTE [Long Term Evolution]," Mike Fairon, general manager of product, services and innovation at MTN told News24.

"When you look at us rolling out the networks, the biggest risk is the allocation of spectrum, and we are progressing with the rollout of the network," he added.

Both MTN and Vodacom announced higher speed LTE networks offering users speeds of around 40mbps, largely welcomed by industry analysts, despite the service not meeting the strict criteria as determined by the International Telecommunication Union.

"The truth is that what people will experience, is a next generation experience. It's quite absurd to compare the speeds that this LTE network will provide to 3G. To call it 3G is misleading," said World Wide Worx CEO Arthur Goldstuck.


In many developing countries, there have been controversies over the allocation over potentially lucrative spectrum for mobile networks.

In SA, the operators have been forced to refarm existing spectrum in the absence of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) awarding the resource.

The GSMA urged politicians not to meddle in the allocation of the spectrum which was critical to operators being able to rollout mobile broadband.

"Get the politics out of mobile, this is about creating jobs; this is about growing your economies; this is about helping the bottom of the pyramid. Fixed line connectivity is not going to achieve that," said Peter Lyons GSMA director for spectrum policy in Africa and the Middle East.

Fairon said that MTN was capable of using the spectrum effectively to deliver mobile broadband to the majority of the population.

"If you look at the entities that are capable of rolling out such a network, the spectrum should only be allocated to people that are capable of rolling out these networks at scale," he said.

Rich media

Mobile broadband is expected to deliver high speeds networks that would enable users to consume rich media such as video, and Farion insisted that companies with the infrastructure should be tasked with the rollout.

"What you need on LTE is you need the fall back networks. So for example, if the LTE network is congested, you have to be able to downgrade to the 3G network or the 2G network so at worst case you're getting a 2G experience.

"If spectrum is allocated to organisations that don't have these networks, where does a customer go when that LTE network is contended?" he said.

- Follow Duncan on Twitter

Read more on:    mtn  |  mobile

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


DA wants to empower fishing communities - Zille

DA leader Helen Zille says the party has a plan for harbours and small-scale fishing communities.


Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
  • Friday Grabouw - 10:15 AM
    Road name: N2 Eastbound
    DELAYS approaching Grabouw
  • Friday Cape Town - 10:14 AM
    Road name: M3 Inbound
    EVENT - left lane closed between Rhodes Avenue and UCT
More traffic reports...

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now! - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Bold Touch 9900

The Blackberry Bold Touch 9900 is as the name says...

From R3565.00

I'm shopping for:


You may find yourself putting in that extra effort on looking good and making an impression. more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.