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Telecoms News

MTN wants court to scrap or fix 5G spectrum sale process

By: Reuters     29th January 2021 South African mobile network operator MTN Group has asked the Gauteng High court to scrap or review the telecom regulator's auction process for awarding spectrum vital for rolling out 5G technology. MTN is the latest mobile operator to take the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa... 

MTN donates $25m to the AU vaccine programme for health workers

By: Yvonne Silaule     28th January 2021 Telecoms group MTN has donated $25-million to the African Union's vaccine programme to immunise health workers. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who is also chairperson of the AU, made the announcement on Wednesday during the African Covid-19 Vaccine Financing and Deployment Strategy... 

Growth in digital reality, RAN, cloud and sports tech intensify 

By: Natasha Odendaal     27th January 2021 The latest Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT) Predictions report reveals that open and virtualised radio access networks (RANs) are accelerating, the 8k television (TV) wave will expand and fifth-generation (5G) myths are being debunked. The twentieth yearly edition of the TMT... 

Growth in digital reality, RAN, cloud and sports tech intensify
Deloitte Global TMT head of research Paul Lee discusses the outcomes of the twentieth yearly edition Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT) Predictions report. Date recorded: 27.01.2021. Video recording: Kutlwano Matlala. Video Editing: Nicholas Boyd

Huge Group aims for secondary listing on Aim

By: Natasha Odendaal     25th January 2021 JSE-listed Huge Group is planning a secondary listing on the Alternative Investment Market (Aim) of the London Stock Exchange. In an update to shareholders on January 25, the group said that the board of directors have resolved to make application for admission as a secondary listing. 

Extraterrestrial oceanography sees scientists probing the depths of Titan’s largest sea

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd January 2021 Astronomers at Cornell University, at Ithaca in the US state of New York, have used radar data to determine that the biggest sea on Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, is, near its centre, at least 300 m deep. The sea is named Kraken Mare, and it is estimated to have a surface area of some 400 000... 

An artist’s impression of the Kraken Mare
Photo by Nasa
An artist’s impression of the Kraken Mare

Uganda orders internet blackout until further notice - MTN

By: Reuters     14th January 2021 Uganda's communications regulator ordered telecoms operators in the country to suspend all internet gateways from Wednesday evening until further notice, South African telecoms company MTN Group said. The blackout came on the eve of a presidential election in which long-time leader Yoweri... 

Cell C starts migrating customers 

By: Natasha Odendaal     13th January 2021 Mobile operator Cell C has started migrating its customers onto partner networks. The migration of contract and broadband customers is expected to be completed within the next two months, while the phased transition of prepaid customers will be confirmed in due course. 

MTN offers 1 GB incentive to download Covid-19 Alert app

By: Natasha Odendaal     12th January 2021 Telecommunications giant MTN is offering customers 1 GB of free data for an hour to incentivise the download and zero-rated use of the Covid-19 Alert application. The Covid Alert SA app, designed by Discovery for the National Department of Health, uses Bluetooth contact tracing technology,... 

Tribunal asked to restrain GovChat’s removal from WhatsApp

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th January 2021 Government’s WhatsApp-based citizen engagement platform GovChat has brought an urgent application to the Competition Tribunal to prevent Facebook, WhatsApp and Facebook South Africa from removing it from the WhatsApp platform. The Tribunal will hear arguments on January 13 from the applicants,... 

Proudly SA opens bids for hosting of virtual conference

By: Simone Liedtke     11th January 2021 South Africa’s national buy local campaign, Proudly South African (SA), has issued a request for proposals from qualified service providers for the provision and execution of a virtual conference and expo, scheduled for March 8 to 10. All bids must be submitted on or before 15:00 on January 25. 

Telkom withdraws one portion of court case against spectrum allocations 

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th January 2021 Telkom has withdrawn the portion of its court application against the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) that compels the authority to inform all potential parties interested in the spectrum auction of the proceedings. In December, Telkom took to the courts to have... 

MTN named best mobile network for 2020

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th January 2021 Telecommunications group MTN has secured the title of the best mobile network in South Africa for 2020. This is according to the MyBroadband Insights 2020 Mobile Network Quality Report, released on January 11, which is based on 1.2-million speed tests performed by 41 099 MyBroadband Speed Test... 

Vodacom and MTN telecommunications towers burnt in South Africa by 5G protesters 

By: Reuters     8th January 2021 About three telecommunications towers belonging to Vodacom and MTN were burnt this week following a resurgence in conspiracy theories which link the emergence of Covid-19 to 5G technology, South Africa's communication minister said on Thursday. The towers were burnt and destroyed between Tuesday... 

Africa to benefit as AST, Vodafone launch plans for space-based metwork

By: African News Agency      18th December 2020 Telecommunications firm AST & Science, in partnership with Vodafone, plans to launch the first phase of a space-based commercial mobile communications service in 2023, a move which will boost phone coverage in Africa. SpaceMobile will be the first space-based mobile network to connect directly to... 

MTN must verify users in Nigeria by year end or face blocked SIM cards

By: News24Wire      17th December 2020 MTN said on Thursday it has embarked on the laborious task of registering customers from its largest market, Nigeria, within two weeks, following a directive from the country's communications commission to suspend new SIM registrations by all network operators. The company, which is Africa's... 

Altron successfully completes demerger, separate listing of Bytes

By: Creamer Media Reporter      17th December 2020 JSE-listed Allied Electronics Corporation (Altron) has completed the demerger of its Bytes Technology Group subsidiary, following the listing of Bytes on the LSE and the JSE. As a result of the demerger of Bytes, Altron shareholders will receive, after tax and transaction costs, about... 

Zikalala welcomes roll-out of 5G in KwaZulu-Natal

By: Yvonne Silaule     14th December 2020 KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala has welcomed the launch telecommunications company Vodacom’s fifth-generation (5G) network in the province, as part of the vision to create a smart province by 2021. The Premier on December 14 said the launch was a step forward in achieving this vision.  

Liquid Telecom appoints CEO for Nigeria business

By: Creamer Media Reporter      14th December 2020 Pan-African telecoms group Liquid Telecom has appointed Wole Abu CEO for Liquid Telecom Nigeria and its new Africa Data Centre (ADC) in Nigeria, effective January 2021.  "Abu [has] over 14 years of experience in the telecommunications industry, which will be integral as we continue to expand our... 

Liquid Telecom Nigeria CEO Wole Abu
Liquid Telecom Nigeria CEO Wole Abu

Project Isizwe overhauls its delivery model for sustainability 

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th December 2020 Project Isizwe has evolved from a non profit organisation to a full profit firm able to provide low cost Internet access for low-income communities around South Africa on a more sustainable basis and scale affordable Internet infrastructure. The group, which established the successful City of... 

Project Isizwe founder Alan Knott-Craig Jnr
Project Isizwe founder Alan Knott-Craig Jr discusses how Project Isizwe has evolved over the past few years.

MTN, Airtel ordered to suspend Nigerian SIM card sales

By: Bloomberg     11th December 2020 Nigeria ordered telecommunications companies, including MTN Group and Airtel Africa, to suspend the sale of SIM cards while authorities check their compliance with registration guidelines. It didn’t say how long the review would take. “Mobile network operators are hereby directed to immediately... 

Sacpo, Huawei to roll out ICT academies across South African TVET colleges by 2021

By: Yvonne Silaule     9th December 2020 The South African College Principals Organisation and Huawei have signed a memorandum of understanding to roll out information and communication technology academies in all of South Africa’s 50 technical and vocational education and training colleges, by 2021, Higher Education, Science and... 

Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande
Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande

Telkom CFO Molefe resigns

By: Reuters     4th December 2020 South African mobile network operator Telkom SA said on Friday Tsholofelo Molefe has resigned as the group CFO to pursue other interests. Dirk Reyneke, current CFO of Openserve - the wholesale connectivity division of Telkom - will take over the position of acting group CFO, effective December... 

Herotel reaches 100k fixed broadband customer mark

By: Natasha Odendaal     1st December 2020 Fibre and fixed wireless broadband provider Herotel has reached the milestone of 100 000 fixed broadband subscribers on its fibre and fixed wireless networks. The group, which was started in 2014, deployed its own fibre networks, targeting non-metropolitan, underserviced areas across South Africa... 

Moody's downgrades Telkom's credit rating following sovereign rating action

By: Natasha Odendaal     27th November 2020 Ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service has downgraded telecommunications group Telkom’s corporate family rating to Ba2, from Ba1, with a negative outlook. This followed Moody’s downgrading of South Africa’s sovereign rating by one notch to Ba2 with a negative outlook on November 20. 

Forge Academy launches AI lab in Johannesburg

By: Natasha Odendaal     26th November 2020 Nokia-powered education facility Forge Academy has unveiled a fully inclusive artificial intelligence (AI) laboratory in Johannesburg. The laboratory, based at The Gantry, in Fourways, aims to equip students with theoretical, laboratory and on-the-job training for the Fourth Industrial Revolution... 

Etion H1 earnings contract

By: Creamer Media Reporter      25th November 2020 JSE-listed Etion reported a decline in net profit to R4.9-million for the six months ended September 30, 2020, from R5.4-million reported in the corresponding six months last year. The group’s profit before tax increased by 45% from R5.4-million in the first half of 2019 to R7.9-million during... 

SA urged to pursue cybersecurity frameworks based on global best practice

By: Schalk Burger     20th November 2020 The data that public and private organisations capture and use, as well as its sensitivity, risk, and protection, are central not only to international best practices of cybersecurity, but also to laws and regulation. Information and communication technology (ICT) and law experts indicate that... 

SA urged to pursue cybersecurity frameworks based on global best practice

Liquid Telecom, Zayo partner to expand global network coverage

By: Natasha Odendaal     17th November 2020 Pan-African telecoms group Liquid Telecom and communications infrastructure leader Zayo Group have partnered to leverage their existing networks for customers that have operations in Africa, Europe and North America. This partnership will see the duo add value for their customers through the use... 

Vodacom reports half-year surge

By: Natasha Odendaal     16th November 2020 Telecommunications group Vodacom has reported a surge in data use that has led to an increase in service revenue for the six months ended September 30. The group’s revenue was up 7.8% to R47.8-billion during the half-year under review, underpinned by strong growth in Vodacom South Africa’s... 

AWS solutions unlock machine learning potential for Arçelik

By: Natasha Odendaal     16th November 2020 Global household appliances manufacturer Arçelik is establishing a companywide analytics and machine learning programme, powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), as it transforms its appliance manufacturing business into a data-driven organisation. AWS was selected as the preferred cloud provider... 

Telkom posts growth in interim headline earnings as working-from-home increased 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     10th November 2020 Despite having experienced different impacts to its business units as a result of Covid-19 and the related lockdown, JSE-listed telecommunications company Telkom still came out of the first half of its financial year with improved profitability, strong liquidity and a strengthened balance sheet.... 

Telkom posts growth in interim headline earnings as working-from-home increased
Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko shares the good and bad impacts of Covid-19 impacts on the business

Competition Commission reviews inputs to strategy to tackle digital economy competition

By: Natasha Odendaal     4th November 2020 The Competition Commission is reviewing the submissions it has received in response to its proposed competitive strategy for South Africa’s digital economy in the future. The draft paper on Competition in the Digital Economy was published in September for public comment before October 30,... 

Teraco starts construction on 38 MW hyperscale data centre

By: Natasha Odendaal     3rd November 2020 Interconnection hub and vendor-neutral data centre provider Teraco Data Environments has broken ground on the construction of a new hyperscale data centre with 38 MW of critical power load in Ekurhuleni, Johannesburg. The facility, known as JB4, is expected to be the largest single site data... 

MTN reports strong Q3 operational performance

By: Natasha Odendaal     30th October 2020 Telecommunications giant MTN Group has reported double-digit growth in earnings and service revenue for the third quarter of 2020, as larger operations in South Africa, Nigeria and Ghana deliver solid performances and subscriber numbers surge. In the three months to September, earnings before... 

MTN Nigeria’s revenue, earnings grow despite voice, data volatility

By: Natasha Odendaal     28th October 2020 MTN Nigeria reported growth in revenue and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) despite facing volatility in voice and data revenue over the nine months ended September 30. The group’s Ebitda increased 9.1% to N497.9-billion; however, its Ebitda margin contracted... 

Mboweni agrees to SAA's R10.5bn bailout; no funds for SABC, Post Office and Denel 

By: News24Wire      28th October 2020 South African Airways will get the R10.5-billion it has requested from government to fund its business rescue process. The monies will be made available from reductions from national departments and their entities as well as reductions from local and provincial conditional grants, according to... 

Mboweni agrees to SAA's R10.5bn bailout; no funds for SABC, Post Office and Denel

Icasa closes in on broadband inquiry, operators say effective spectrum allocation critical

By: Natasha Odendaal     27th October 2020 Two years after the completion of the priority markets inquiry in 2018, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) aims to wrap up its Mobile Broadband Services Inquiry by March 31, 2021. The authority, which held public hearings on the December published Discussion... 

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