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MTN readies its network for festive season

As South Africans prepare to celebrate the festive season, MTN has been hard at work capacitating its network in high density areas and tourist hotspots in order to carry increased voice and data traffic over the festive season.

Operations are under way to cater for additional coverage and capacity requirements in selected hotspots. The areas that have been identified for network optimisation are major routes including the N1, which connects Cape Town and the Limpopo; the N3, which links Gauteng and Durban; the N12, which connects Johannesburg and the Garden Route; the N2, which links Cape Town and Durban; the N4, which joins Pretoria and Mozambique; and the N7, which is the artery between Cape Town and Namibia.

Other areas that have been identified include coastal towns that are popular tourist destinations.

"We have embarked on a multi-pronged network optimisation drive to improve network capacity and quality in key nodes in order to ensure that our customers enjoy seamless network experience. We will be working very closely with our vendor partners to monitor network performance around the clock in near real time, and senior management and regional staff will be on standby to attend to any technical issues that may arise," says Giovanni Chiarelli, Chief Technology and Information Officer: MTN SA.

The network optimisation will also entail the deployment of new base stations and technology upgrades on selected 3G and LTE stations, even in the most remote areas. MTN will also keep track of its network performance on Christmas Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day when demand is expected to peak. Where required, MTN will deploy mobile base stations in cases where demand exceeds capacity.

MTN SA has embarked on a network modernisation programme which includes upgrading of radio and transmission infrastructure to cater for current and future capacity requirements. In the current financial year, MTN SA has invested over R10 billion to improve network quality and capacity. As a result of these network upgrades, MTN's LTE coverage has reached 95% of the population and its 4G network is also available on major routes across South Africa.

"This network upgrade exercise seeks to enrich the experience of our customers who will be travelling throughout the length and breadth of this beautiful country either on holiday or visiting loved ones. MTN believes that its customers deserve world-class network performance wherever they may be, and these upgrades enable us to share that winning feeling with millions of South Africans," Jacqui O'Sullivan, Executive for Corporate Affairs: MTN SA.

This holiday upgrade programme is based on analysis and trends from previous years at popular tourist sites such as Durban Beachfront, Ballito, Camps Bay, Knysna and Jeffrey's Bay. The network upgrades are further informed by input from the regional teams as well as lessons learnt from the hosting of major events.


MTN Group

Launched in 1994, the MTN Group is a multinational telecommunications group, operating in 21 countries in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. The MTN Group is listed on the JSE Securities Exchange in South Africa under the share code: "MTN".

As at the end of 30 June 2010, MTN recorded 129.2 million subscribers across its operations in Afghanistan, Benin, Botswana, Cameroon, Cote d'Ivoire, Cyprus, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Republic, Iran, Liberia, Nigeria, Republic of Congo (Congo Brazzaville), Rwanda, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Uganda, Yemen and Zambia. The MTN Group is a global sponsor of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa and has exclusive mobile content rights for Africa and the Middle East. Visit and