MTN drops international call rates

2013-09-16 12:45
(Duncan Alfreds, News24)

(Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Cape Town - MTN is taking the fight for call rates to its competitors with a new international call tariff.

On Monday, the mobile operator introduced a lower international call rate of 75c per minute to neighbouring African countries.

"We are introducing an offering that would address the growing needs of our customer’s to make cheaper calls to international destinations either for business or for personal reasons," said MTN SA chief marketing officer, Brian Gouldie.

The rates compare well to competitors.

Vodacom's cheapest international call rate is 89c in so-called Zone 1 countries, but several neighbouring countries fall into Zone 3, which costs R1.79.


On Cell C, the lowest international call rate is 99c to Zone 1 countries, which includes the US and Europe, but Mozambique and Malawi fall into Zone 3 at R1.99. Zimbabwe calls on the network cost R5.59 in Zone 9.

According to figures from Statistics South Africa, a high percentage of African tourists coming to SA are from SADC countries. The organisation said that 493 644 or 97% of African tourists came from SADC countries in 2011.

Voice calls are relatively flat in terms of generating revenue for mobile operators as data drives consumption. Both Vodacom and MTN have rolled out limited LTE (Long Term Evolution) services as it is expected that data will drive revenue growth for mobile operators.

"The big picture theme for us will be broadening access to connectivity both geographically and across all socio-economic groups. Lower cost devices, both smartphones and tablets, will be a big focus. In conjunction with this we'll continue to roll out higher speed connectivity through new technology like LTE and expanding our fibre-optic transmission network," Richard Boorman Vodacom Group executive head of corporate communications told News24 recently.

"Data growth has happened on multiple fronts, from the increase in smartphone penetration, the improvement in the speed of MTN's data network due to the significant rollout in 3G/HSPA+ and fibre over the last 24 months, the increase in consumption of video and higher speed applications and services, a general adoption of mobile data and internet as a 'must have' service," said Lambotharan Kanagaratnam, chief technology officer at MTN SA.

- Follow Duncan on Twitter
Read more on:    mtn  |  cell c  |  vodacom  |  mobile

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