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Telkom to switch off its 2G network

Telkom could switch off its 2G network in the next 12 months as the number of legacy handsets on its mobile infrastructure dwindles. Original Link

MTN set to relaunch Mobile Money in South Africa

Two years after pulling the plug on its Mobile Money service in South Africa, MTN Group plans to relaunch the service in South Africa, according to sources close to the matter. Original Link

Cell C customers now roaming on MTN

Cell C said on Tuesday that it has completed the implementation of its roaming agreement with MTN South Africa. Original Link

MTN has best network for video streaming: OpenSignal

MTN South Africa has edged ahead of rival Vodacom in offering the best video streaming experience, according to a new report from OpenSignal. Original Link

MTN denies targeting restrained Vodacom employees

MTN South Africa has denied it using an agreement with a company called Tuum Communications as a “guise” to hire restrained employees away from rival Vodacom. Original Link

Vodacom shares tumble on slower revenue growth

Vodacom Group shares fell after the wireless carrier with the most South African customers reported slower revenue growth in its domestic market, as a sluggish economy hurt consumer spending. Original Link

Why Telkom’s new roaming deal is a game changer

Telkom announced on Wednesday that it has concluded a new roaming agreement with Vodacom that will allow its customers access to the latter’s 4G/LTE network with no restrictions. Original Link

Telkom to switch from MTN to Vodacom for roaming

Telkom mobile users will in future roam on Vodacom’s network, not MTN’s, after the two cellular operators concluded a new, multibillion-rand roaming deal on Wednesday. Original Link

Romeo Kumalo to launch tech investment firm, sources say

Former Vodacom Group executive Romeo Kumalo has started a tech-focused South African investment firm and aims to raise as much as R2.9-billion in an initial public offering next year, sources say. Original Link

Rain sets out 5G network roll-out plan

Rain will build a 5G network in South Africa, chairman Paul Harris said at the South Africa Investment Conference on Friday. It will leverage its existing spectrum allocation in the 3.6GHz band to do this, he said. Original Link

TalkCentral: Ep 239 – ‘Cell C rains on Vodacom’s parade’

In the TalkCentral podcast this week, Vodacom and Rain’s roaming deal, Standard Bank’s MVNO, the Internet Service Providers’ Association’s demands, Huawei’s Mate 20 Pro and Adobe Creative Cloud 2019. Original Link

It’s official: Standard Bank is launching an MVNO

Standard Bank has finally confirmed one of the telecommunications industry’s worst-kept secrets: it will launch a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO), becoming the second major bank in South Africa to do so. Original Link

Icasa messed up in not blocking Vodacom, Rain deal: Cell C

Communications regulator Icasa failed in its regulatory duty when it allowed Vodacom and Rain to enter into a national roaming agreement, Cell C told the Competition Commission on Thursday. Original Link

‘Enduring’ mobile duopoly has harmed consumers: Telkom CEO

Regulators should lend more support to smaller mobile operators to help them break the dominance of Vodacom and MTN, Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko told the Competition Commission on Thursday. Original Link

SA ranked with war zones in spectrum allocation: MTN

Of the 21 countries in which MTN operates, its South African operation has the least spectrum assigned to it outside countries that face conflict situations. Original Link

We don’t have capacity to sell to ISPs, Vodacom says

Vodacom simply doesn’t have the network capacity to be able to sell access to its network on a wholesale basis to South African Internet service providers, CEO Shameel Joosub said on Thursday. Original Link

Vodacom launches ‘super HD’ voice calling

Vodacom said on Thursday it is working with device manufacturers to introduce enhanced voice services – known as super high-definition voice or HD Voice+, on its network in South Africa. Original Link

Commission urged to open mobile operators’ networks to ISPs

The Internet Service Providers’ Association has urged the Competition Commission to force South Africa’s mobile network operators to open their networks on a wholesale basis to ISPs. Original Link

Social, streaming bundles are just the ticket

Mobile operators have begun distinguishing between different kinds of traffic and providing differentiated data bundles for streaming and social media services. Original Link

Retrenchments at Liquid Telecom amid major restructuring

Liquid Telecom South Africa will embark on a retrenchment programme amid a major restructuring of the business, TechCentral can reveal. Original Link

Government’s spectrum licensing plans revealed

The CSIR’s report on how much spectrum the agency believes should be assigned to government’s planned wholesale open-access network has finally been released. Original Link

Government to direct Icasa to license broadband spectrum

Telecommunications & postal services minister Siyabonga Cwele will issue a policy direction to communications regulator Icasa to license “high-demand” broadband spectrum soon. Original Link

Interview: Fernando Borjón on Mexico’s Woan and lessons for SA

Mexico is often held up by the South African government as an example of a successful wholesale open-access network. But how successful has Mexico’s Woan – known as Red Compartida – been? Fernando Borjón of Mexico’s Promtel provides some insight. Original Link

MTN launches voice over LTE

MTN South Africa has launched voice over LTE, also known as VoLTE, to customers with certain supported devices. Previously, calls were only carried on the operator’s 2G and 3G infrastructure. Original Link

Comsol launches 5G network in Soweto

Comsol Networks, a telecommunications business backed by Andile Ngcaba’s Convergence Partners, has launched the first 5G network in Soweto. Original Link

Vodacom is SA’s speed king, OpenSignal finds

Vodacom has extended its lead at the top of OpenSignal’s latest awards table, winning six out of seven categories and scoring highly in regional speed and latency categories. Original Link

Stop regulating the past, Telkom CEO urges Icasa

Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko has urged policymakers to “anticipate what the problems will be in 2025” and to look at regulation holistically instead of dealing with each on a standalone basis. Original Link

Telkom may switch roaming to Vodacom

Vodacom is negotiating a wireless network sharing deal with Telkom as a replacement for former partner Cell C, according to people familiar with the matter. Original Link

Telkom CEO warns of ‘calamity’ over Icasa regulations

Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko on Monday warned that Icasa’s draft regulations on call termination rates could force the operator into a very difficult position, with the potential that it could ultimately withdraw from providing services in rural areas. Original Link

Vodacom launches commercial 5G – in Lesotho

Johannesburg-headquartered Vodacom Group said on Saturday that it has become the first operator in Africa to launch a standards-based, commercial 5G network. Original Link

Give us a break on call rates, Cell C tells Icasa

Cell C CEO Jose Dos Santos on Friday said communications regulator Icasa needs to make bolder decisions in its call termination regulations to assist smaller operators take on Vodacom and MTN. Original Link

Telkom CEO warns of jobs bloodbath over Icasa regulations

Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko has severely criticised communications regulator Icasa over proposed new call termination rates, saying they could lead to a jobs bloodbath at the company. Original Link

Cabinet approves ICT bill, paving way for the Woan

Cabinet has approved an amended version of the Electronic Communications Amendment Bill, taking South Africa closer to the allocation of radio frequency spectrum to mobile operators. Original Link

Blue Label moves to reassure market on Cell C

As Blue Label’s share price on Wednesday fell to the same level as its debut price on the JSE 11 years ago, the company’s management team has moved to assure the market that its acquisition of 45% of Cell C was not only well thought through but will deliver the expected returns. Original Link

Helios eyes DRC after scrapping listing plans

Helios Towers is investing tens of millions of dollars in the Democratic Republic of Congo and looking for acquisitions as the African phone-tower operator seeks to move on from a scrapped initial public offering earlier this year. Original Link

Zero-rated WhatsApp rival launched in South Africa

A new, South African-developed rival to Facebook’s WhatsApp, which offers zero-rated data access on South Africa’s four largest mobile operators, has been launched. Original Link

Amended telecoms bill headed to cabinet

A redrafted version of the Electronic Communications Amendment Bill will be presented to cabinet by the end of next month, a move that could finally take South Africa a meaningful step closer to awarding new spectrum licences. Original Link

TalkCentral: Ep 230 – ‘Take Note’

In the podcast this week, Duncan McLeod and Regardt van der Berg chat about the launch of Samsung’s new flagship “phablet”, the Galaxy Note9, Vodacom and MTN’s squabbles at the Advertising Standards Authority, and the launch of Android 9 Pie. Original Link

Vodacom spending big money to beat MTN

Vodacom is pouring money into its network in South Africa in an effort to ensure it stays ahead of crosstown rival MTN when it comes to coverage and performance. Original Link

Liquid Telecom looks to unlock its spectrum assets in SA

Newly appointed Liquid Telecom South Africa CEO Reshaad Sha said in a podcast interview with TechCentral on Thursday that one of his top priorities is unlocking the potential of its valuable spectrum assets. Original Link

Backspace: ‘Vodacon?’

View the latest contribution from TechCentral cartoonist Jerm. Original Link

Backspace: ‘Vodacon?’

View the latest contribution from TechCentral cartoonist Jerm. Original Link

Vodacom pays R1.2-million after violating client’s privacy: report

Vodacom has reportedly paid more than R1.2-million to forensic investigator Paul O’Sullivan after the cellphone giant allegedly handed over confidential call records to the legal team representing a former high-ranking member of the criminal underworld. Original Link

Vodacom adds 2.5 million customers in first quarter

Vodacom Group CEO Shameel Joosub

Vodacom Group had a robust first quarter of its 2019 financial year, growing subscriber numbers year on year by 2.5 million — 1.5 million of which were in South Africa — and data revenue by 9.6%, it said on Tuesday.

In the three months ended 30 June 2018, the JSE-listed telecommunications provider reported a 10.3% increase in subscribers to 76.5 million and a 4.2% in group service revenue. South African service revenue rose 4.9%. Reported M-Pesa mobile money revenue growth was a healthy 18.1%.

Group CEO Shameel Joosub said the “strong momentum” reported in its annual results carried on into the first quarter of the new year.

“In South Africa, despite a tougher economic environment, we grew service revenue by 4.9%, supported by customer growth of 9.5% to reach 43.1 million customers,” Joosub said. It added 1.4 million prepaid customers and 75 000 contract subscribers.

“This was driven by our big data-led innovations, which contributed to robust demand for personalised bundles, offering customers better value for money.”

Service revenue in South Africa was R13.8-billion, supported by an improvement in customer revenue growth trends, despite subdued macroeconomic conditions.

Contract customer revenue growth recovered from declines in previous quarters, to grow at 0.8%. The was supported by improved performance in the enterprise segment, reflecting customer and average revenue per user (Arpu) gains from recent contract sign-ups and improved usage. Overall, contract Arpu declined by 2.3%, an improvement in the trend from the last two quarters. Voice revenue declined by 2.6%.

Data still growing

Data revenue in South Africa grew by 9.4% to R6.1-billion, contributing 44.1% (2018: 42.2%) of service revenue. “We continue to drive bundle engagement aggressively to ensure a worry free experience for our customers. The success of this pricing strategy, making data more affordable for our customers, has resulted in a 32.2% increase in data bundle sales and an overall effective price-per-megabyte reduction of 17.1%. We continue to grow our current 4G data users, adding 739 000 4G customers in the quarter reaching 8.1 million customers.”

Fixed-line revenue growth was 22%, while Internet of things connections increased by 25.2% to 3.9 million.

Vodacom spent R2-billion on its network in South Africa during the quarter, with a focus on new sites, upgrades and capacity to improve network quality and performance. Vodacom’s 4G population coverage expanded to 81.5%, up from 75.9% a year ago.

In its operations outside South Africa, capital expenditure was R552-million.  — © 2018 NewsCentral Media

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Vodacom adds 2.5 million customers in first quarter

Vodacom Group CEO Shameel Joosub

Vodacom Group had a robust first quarter of its 2019 financial year, growing subscriber numbers year on year by 2.5 million — 1.5 million of which were in South Africa — and data revenue by 9.6%, it said on Tuesday.

In the three months ended 30 June 2018, the JSE-listed telecommunications provider reported a 10.3% increase in subscribers to 76.5 million and a 4.2% in group service revenue. South African service revenue rose 4.9%. Reported M-Pesa mobile money revenue growth was a healthy 18.1%.

Group CEO Shameel Joosub said the “strong momentum” reported in its annual results carried on into the first quarter of the new year.

“In South Africa, despite a tougher economic environment, we grew service revenue by 4.9%, supported by customer growth of 9.5% to reach 43.1 million customers,” Joosub said. It added 1.4 million prepaid customers and 75 000 contract subscribers.

“This was driven by our big data-led innovations, which contributed to robust demand for personalised bundles, offering customers better value for money.”

Service revenue in South Africa was R13.8-billion, supported by an improvement in customer revenue growth trends, despite subdued macroeconomic conditions.

Contract customer revenue growth recovered from declines in previous quarters, to grow at 0.8%. The was supported by improved performance in the enterprise segment, reflecting customer and average revenue per user (Arpu) gains from recent contract sign-ups and improved usage. Overall, contract Arpu declined by 2.3%, an improvement in the trend from the last two quarters. Voice revenue declined by 2.6%.

Data still growing

Data revenue in South Africa grew by 9.4% to R6.1-billion, contributing 44.1% (2018: 42.2%) of service revenue. “We continue to drive bundle engagement aggressively to ensure a worry free experience for our customers. The success of this pricing strategy, making data more affordable for our customers, has resulted in a 32.2% increase in data bundle sales and an overall effective price-per-megabyte reduction of 17.1%. We continue to grow our current 4G data users, adding 739 000 4G customers in the quarter reaching 8.1 million customers.”

Fixed-line revenue growth was 22%, while Internet of things connections increased by 25.2% to 3.9 million.

Vodacom spent R2-billion on its network in South Africa during the quarter, with a focus on new sites, upgrades and capacity to improve network quality and performance. Vodacom’s 4G population coverage expanded to 81.5%, up from 75.9% a year ago.

In its operations outside South Africa, capital expenditure was R552-million.  — © 2018 NewsCentral Media

Original Link

Vodacom adds 2.5 million customers in first quarter

Vodacom Group CEO Shameel Joosub

Vodacom Group had a robust first quarter of its 2019 financial year, growing subscriber numbers year on year by 2.5 million — 1.5 million of which were in South Africa — and data revenue by 9.6%, it said on Tuesday.

In the three months ended 30 June 2018, the JSE-listed telecommunications provider reported a 10.3% increase in subscribers to 76.5 million and a 4.2% in group service revenue. South African service revenue rose 4.9%. Reported M-Pesa mobile money revenue growth was a healthy 18.1%.

Group CEO Shameel Joosub said the “strong momentum” reported in its annual results carried on into the first quarter of the new year.

“In South Africa, despite a tougher economic environment, we grew service revenue by 4.9%, supported by customer growth of 9.5% to reach 43.1 million customers,” Joosub said. It added 1.4 million prepaid customers and 75 000 contract subscribers.

“This was driven by our big data-led innovations, which contributed to robust demand for personalised bundles, offering customers better value for money.”

Service revenue in South Africa was R13.8-billion, supported by an improvement in customer revenue growth trends, despite subdued macroeconomic conditions.

Contract customer revenue growth recovered from declines in previous quarters, to grow at 0.8%. The was supported by improved performance in the enterprise segment, reflecting customer and average revenue per user (Arpu) gains from recent contract sign-ups and improved usage. Overall, contract Arpu declined by 2.3%, an improvement in the trend from the last two quarters. Voice revenue declined by 2.6%.

Data still growing

Data revenue in South Africa grew by 9.4% to R6.1-billion, contributing 44.1% (2018: 42.2%) of service revenue. “We continue to drive bundle engagement aggressively to ensure a worry free experience for our customers. The success of this pricing strategy, making data more affordable for our customers, has resulted in a 32.2% increase in data bundle sales and an overall effective price-per-megabyte reduction of 17.1%. We continue to grow our current 4G data users, adding 739 000 4G customers in the quarter reaching 8.1 million customers.”

Fixed-line revenue growth was 22%, while Internet of things connections increased by 25.2% to 3.9 million.

Vodacom spent R2-billion on its network in South Africa during the quarter, with a focus on new sites, upgrades and capacity to improve network quality and performance. Vodacom’s 4G population coverage expanded to 81.5%, up from 75.9% a year ago.

In its operations outside South Africa, capital expenditure was R552-million.  — © 2018 NewsCentral Media

Original Link

Vodacom adds 2.5 million customers in first quarter

Vodacom Group CEO Shameel Joosub

Vodacom Group had a robust first quarter of its 2019 financial year, growing subscriber numbers year on year by 2.5 million — 1.5 million of which were in South Africa — and data revenue by 9.6%, it said on Tuesday.

In the three months ended 30 June 2018, the JSE-listed telecommunications provider reported a 10.3% increase in subscribers to 76.5 million and a 4.2% in group service revenue. South African service revenue rose 4.9%. Reported M-Pesa mobile money revenue growth was a healthy 18.1%.

Group CEO Shameel Joosub said the “strong momentum” reported in its annual results carried on into the first quarter of the new year.

“In South Africa, despite a tougher economic environment, we grew service revenue by 4.9%, supported by customer growth of 9.5% to reach 43.1 million customers,” Joosub said. It added 1.4 million prepaid customers and 75 000 contract subscribers.

“This was driven by our big data-led innovations, which contributed to robust demand for personalised bundles, offering customers better value for money.”

Service revenue in South Africa was R13.8-billion, supported by an improvement in customer revenue growth trends, despite subdued macroeconomic conditions.

Contract customer revenue growth recovered from declines in previous quarters, to grow at 0.8%. The was supported by improved performance in the enterprise segment, reflecting customer and average revenue per user (Arpu) gains from recent contract sign-ups and improved usage. Overall, contract Arpu declined by 2.3%, an improvement in the trend from the last two quarters. Voice revenue declined by 2.6%.

Data still growing

Data revenue in South Africa grew by 9.4% to R6.1-billion, contributing 44.1% (2018: 42.2%) of service revenue. “We continue to drive bundle engagement aggressively to ensure a worry free experience for our customers. The success of this pricing strategy, making data more affordable for our customers, has resulted in a 32.2% increase in data bundle sales and an overall effective price-per-megabyte reduction of 17.1%. We continue to grow our current 4G data users, adding 739 000 4G customers in the quarter reaching 8.1 million customers.”

Fixed-line revenue growth was 22%, while Internet of things connections increased by 25.2% to 3.9 million.

Vodacom spent R2-billion on its network in South Africa during the quarter, with a focus on new sites, upgrades and capacity to improve network quality and performance. Vodacom’s 4G population coverage expanded to 81.5%, up from 75.9% a year ago.

In its operations outside South Africa, capital expenditure was R552-million.  — © 2018 NewsCentral Media

Original Link

5G set for rapid global adoption: new report

There will be more than a billion 5G subscriptions by the end of 2023 — or just over five years from now — accounting for 12% of all mobile subscriptions, according to a new report from Ericsson.

The company’s latest Mobility Report, for 2018, forecasts that almost 95% of all subscriptions will be for mobile broadband by December 2023. By then, 20% of mobile data traffic will be carried by 5G networks and more than 20% of the world’s population will be covered by the latest-generation mobile technology.

Ericsson said 4G/LTE became the dominant mobile access technology at the end of 2017.

The number of LTE subscriptions continues to grow strongly and is forecast to reach 5.5 billion by the end of 2023, when it will account for more than 60% of all mobile subscriptions. By that year, there will be about 8.9 billion mobile subscriptions in total, of which 8.3 billion will be for mobile broadband. The number of unique mobile subscribers will reach 6.1 billion in five years’ time.

The number of 3G subscriptions is expected to decline slightly during 2018 as 4G and 5G continue to accelerate. However, it’s estimated that 3G technology will still account for about a fifth of all subscriptions in 2023.

The uptake of 5G will be determined by the number of devices available to end users. As with previous generations, there will be a low initial penetration of compatible devices for 5G, Ericsson said, but this number will accelerate as volumes inevitably increase and prices fall.

Sub-Saharan Africa is likely to lag adoption in the rest of the world, however, with significant 5G subscription volumes only expected from 2022, the report said. In South Africa, the two largest mobile operators, MTN and Vodacom, have been run field trials of 5G technology and have encouraged government and the regulator, Icasa, to release spectrum as soon as possible so they can begin to commercialise the technology.

As with 2G, 3G and 4G technologies, 5G will for the most part be rolled out in dense urban areas to start, then will gradually be expanded into suburbs and major highway routes. One of the first commercial uses will be for fixed-wireless access (in other words, for use in a specific location such as the home as a replacement or addition to a fixed-line service).

“It will primarily be deployed where there are limited fixed broadband alternatives available for households, implying an initial coverage build-out in suburban areas,” the Ericsson report said. “Other use cases will come from industries such as automotive, manufacturing, utilities and healthcare, and will drive demand for dedicated coverage in defined areas.”

Much work

Much work still must be done, however, when it comes to the management of radio frequency spectrum for 5G, especially around aligning allocations between countries, it said.

Ericsson said that for 5G services to be successful in meeting demand for data speeds and capacities, agreements made at the International Telecommunication Union’s World Radiocommunication Conference in November 2019 will need to provide enough spectrum in the right bands and under the right conditions.

“Mobile data traffic is projected to increase by eight times over the next six years. New applications such as augmented reality, virtual reality and other increasingly immersive video formats are emerging, along with growing demands on security and reliability. In addition, billions of new connected Internet of things devices are expected, with a large variety of business cases and requirements on mobile networks.

“To support these demands, 5G service providers will need sufficient spectrum bandwidth. As radio wave propagation properties differ by spectrum band, it will be important to secure a combination of bands to meet both coverage (low/mid-bands) and capacity requirements (high bands).”

The high-frequency bands expected to be deployed early on for 5G include 28GHz, 26GHz, 37GHz and 39GHz. “The 28GHz band may be used in certain countries by the end of 2018 or early 2019, while the other high bands are estimated to be available in late 2019.”

Bands below 1GHz, which provide good coverage in remote areas and into buildings, are also likely to be in high demand for 5G roll-outs. Ericsson said a new band in the 600MHz range is expected to be made available by the end of 2018 for 5G.

Parts of the mid-bands between 1GHz and 7GHz are also expected to be allocated in many countries. Mid-frequency bands between 3.3GHz and 5GHz will likely be made available around 2020 and are important spectrum resources for terrestrial 5G access networks, it said.

“The mid-bands are particularly beneficial as they offer a favourable ‘middle ground’ between propagation characteristics (coverage) and bandwidth (capacity).”

Operators in the US will be among the first to launch 5G commercial services. The country’s four major operators have publicly announced that they will begin providing 5G services between late 2018 and mid-2019. Other markets where significant 5G subscription volumes are expected early include South Korea, Japan and China, Ericsson said. “Globally, major 5G network deployments are expected from 2020.”

However, 4G networks will continue to expand, too, and play a pivotal role in delivering mobile broadband for the foreseeable future.

According to the report, 4G/LTE has been deployed faster than all previous mobile communications technologies. It took just five years for LTE to cover 2.5 billion people, compared to eight years for 3G, it said.

LTE population coverage is currently over 60% and is forecast to grow to more than 85% in 2023.  — © 2018 NewsCentral Media

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Vodacom to show off 5G at the races

It’s all rather academic at this stage, but Vodacom — like rival MTN — is keen to show off the capabilities of 5G wireless broadband technology. The company will use the upcoming Durban July to showcase the capabilities of the technology.

The operator has partnered with telecommunications equipment supplier Nokia to demonstrate virtual reality through two 5G-powered “experiences” at the horseracing event.

The first VR experience will showcase the high speed and low latency of 5G and will use 4K video cameras to record and stream live, immersive footage from two different positions at the Greyville racecourse at the event on Saturday, 7 July.

Each of these cameras will broadcast a live, 360-degree feed over 5G back to the Vodacom hospitality suite, where guests will be able to experience the feeds from the racecourse through VR headsets, and be virtually transported into the live scenes from the day’s races.

The first camera has been positioned in the Parade Ring, which will allow guests in the suite to have a live, virtual view of the horses as they are paraded before each race.

The second camera has been positioned at the finish line, allowing guests to watch the finish of each race in VR, as if they were at the finish line themselves.

The images from the cameras will be streamed in real time over a Nokia Airscale 5G base station using 100MHz of test spectrum in the 28GHz frequency band. No commercial 5G spectrum licences have been issued in South Africa.

A second 5G-enabled related VR setup will be demonstrated in the form of a VR penalty shootout, where high speeds and super-low latency are both critical to the reality of the experience.

The VR penalty shootout will allow participants to “feel” the difference between the different latencies which are typical of 4G and 5G networks by introducing different reaction times. This will allow participants to feel as if they are physically within a stadium facing the best goalkeepers in the world.

Latency

Latency is the time gap that exists between a request and a response in a system, which is typically around 20ms on a 4G network. On a 5G network, this is reduced to less than 5ms, which means that the request-response between connections is almost real-time, Vodacom said.

This could enable 5G applications being extended to mission-critical control of remote applications, such as industrial automation in factories, remote robotic surgery, as well as smart vehicles and transportation systems, which require ultra-reliable and low-latency communication.

Last month, MTN and its technology partner Ericsson achieved throughput of 1.6Gbit/s using 5G technology at the Gerotek skidpan outside Pretoria.

Also using 100MHz of test spectrum in the 28GHz band, the companies demonstrated a live, 4K-quality video feed streamed from inside a moving car at the facility.

The audience was able to view the driver’s surroundings while moving around the track, allowing them to experience what the driver was seeing in real time.

The demonstration was then taken further by fully obscuring the driver’s windscreen, leaving him to navigate the track using the live feed from a 4K video camera to his virtual reality headset. This was possible thanks to the low latency of 5G technology. The companies achieved network latency during the test of five milliseconds.

The solution demonstrated consisted of three radio units, base-band equipment, prototype 5G user equipment (UE) with an external antenna, a vehicle with the UE installed, a 4K video camera and a VR headset.  — © 2018 NewsCentral Media

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Interview: Thingstream IoT VP Neil Hamilton

Neil Hamilton

In this episode of the podcast, Duncan McLeod interviews Neil Hamilton, vice president of a new Internet of things (IoT) provider in South Africa called Thingstream.

Thingstream, which is part of a Swiss group, is leveraging the GSM networks of Vodacom, MTN and Cell C to provide IoT products and services that leverage the operators’ USSD, or unstructured supplementary service data, protocol to communicate with low-powered IoT devices.

Thingstream, which is expanding into South Africa via a local partner network, delivers a global IoT connectivity platform that connects via GSM networks using a combination of the MQTT and USSD messaging protocols.

Sectors showing particular interest include vehicle tracking firms looking to update and reduce the cost of their existing systems; the manufacturing sector; and supply chain and logistics firms seeking enhanced security and more efficient supply chain and asset management.

It’s a new entry into what is quickly becoming a highly competitive IoT market in South Africa.

Don’t miss the interview!

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