MTN Zambia has announced that it will be investing $9.8 million to boost network capacity and enable high-speed data services on 337 3G and 4G (LTE) network sites across Zambia.
The site-by-site technical roll-out, which focuses on areas with the highest demand pressure, started in the Copperbelt northern regions followed by Lusaka. MTN says its customers will experience the benefits of the increased capacity immediately and that the upgrade is expected to finalise in August.
The improvements are done by adding additional carriers on existing 3G and 4G network sites and upgrading current 3G sites to 4G. It also includes the activation of the 800Mhz 4G spectrum which was released by ZICTA recently.
According to the network provider, this upgrade is important for economic participation during the COVID-19 crisis as more people are working from home requiring better indoor coverage.
“We have seen a number of effects of the COVID-crisis on our network. Network usage during the day has shifted from the traditional peak/off-peak to a more even distribution during the day. We also see higher traffic in residential areas compared to business parks and part of the demand has shifted from voice to data,” says MTN Zambia CEO, Bart Hofker.
“These changes require a more flexible capacity planning from us. Once [the upgrade] is completed, our customers can enjoy a generally improved network speed with little or no interruptions.”