Telkom to launch LTE-A network - TechCentral

Telkom to launch LTE-A network

Brian Armstrong

Brian Armstrong

Telkom will launch an LTE Advanced (LTE-A) network, offering next-generation mobile broadband speeds to South African consumers, before the end of the year, the group’s chief operating officer, Brian Armstrong, has announced.

Speaking in Midrand on Tuesday, Armstrong said Telkom will have 50 suburbs covered using LTE-A technology by March 2015.

Telkom’s LTE-A roll-out plans come just days after Vodacom announced it was testing LTE-A technology using temporary spectrum allocated to it by communications regulator Icasa. The operator demonstrated download speeds of over 300Mbit/s using LTE-A technology.

Telkom is able to be more aggressive in rolling out the latest LTE technology because it has access to much more radio frequency spectrum than its rivals, putting it in a stronger position to deploy the latest technologies quickly.

“This is not a trial or pilot,” said Armstrong. “Commercial launch is starting in December.”

Armstrong said Telkom aims to have the first areas connected during the course of December. “We anticipate the initial roll-out will be complete by March 2015. The precise LTE-A product offerings and prices are still to be announced, but we can confirm we will offer bigger bundles and greater speeds for an enhanced wireless connectivity experience,” he said.

The initial LTE-A roll-out will enable peak connectivity speeds of over 200Mbit/s to selected suburbs identified in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Cape, Telkom said.


Telkom Mobile managing executive for networks Amith Maharaj was expected to provide more details about Telkom’s LTE-A roll-out later on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Armstrong said that Telkom was on track to launch fibre to the home in 23 suburbs before the end of the year. He also said the company was weeks away from announcing its plans in the video-on-demand and Internet protocol television market. “What’s important to us is not necessarily being first to market… It’s about being right to market.”  — (c) 2014 NewsCentral Media


  1. Lynley Pillay on

    So basically telling us that it will be launched in all the wealthy areas in our country and obviously pricing it out of the range of normal people.

    I struggle to understand how our country races to the top in speed yet we do not have nationwide coverage yet. Connectivity is not available to all. I think that should be the first point of focus. then they can focus on speed. The wealthy already have internet. Anything faster they can use their jets to pick it up themselves…..

  2. Hugo Schagen on

    I fully agree. Forget 2..3..400mb/s …I just want 1 or 2 mb/s. Currently on a 38kb/s wireless connection….

  3. Deon Labuschagne on

    typical sam areas as before. 50 suburbs out of how many! Telkom stays kaka.

  4. Have you ever heard of a new technology being successfully launched to a poor market segment first? FOr it to be successful it needs to be launched at a premium price and needs to prove itself to early adopters so that it has a chance of success in the mass market. If this doesnt happen, the mass market will never see it anyway.

  5. Lynley Pillay on

    I don’t doubt that way. But we have no shortage of premium services in our country. What we don’t have is a system that works for all. Surely the nationwide telkom should focus on the masses getting connected first. Then upsell from there.

    It just makes the divide bigger from the haves and have nots.

    But anyway that is IMHO. Feel free to ignore my vs statements

  6. Lynley Pillay on

    At the rate we going we will have 10 Ferrari dealerships in sandton and everybody else walking because no one can afford the cars.

  7. Currently my LTE cat 6 device cannot connect to Telkom LTE network as it is it offered on 2300 Mhz band, if the LTE-A operates on the same band, that will be useless, as most OEM’s do not cover this band, unless of course one purchase a separate Huawei modem designed to operate in this frequency band.

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