Safaricom rolls out 4G-LTE Advanced in selected areas in Nairobi and Mombasa
Kenya’s leading telecom company, Safaricom yesterday announced that it had rolled out the 4G-LTE Advanced in selected areas in Nairobi and Mombasa. The 4G LTE A technology is a more advanced version in the 4G mobile networks systems. Safaricom has guaranteed its subscribers that they will now experience and improved data speed and latency as they continue to enjoy the same level of superior voice services quality.
Safaricom first intends to roll out the 4G LTE-A network to all parts of Nairobi and Mombasa before rolling out to other major towns across Kenya. The Safaricom 4G LTE-A will give users connection speeds of up to 100 Mbps, essentially doubling the 3G network currently operational in Kenya. With these speeds, internet users will now be able to download and upload files very fast, and enhance their experience with video and audio streaming that is not interrupted by buffering.
Bob Collymore, the CEO at Safaricom, said, “The direct impact of data on our economy has already been noted through the increasing number of businesses and services offered online. With 4G, we can deliver revolutionary services like telemedicine, virtualization or real-time video that have immediate and transformational impact on our society.
Today’s launch progresses our strategic push to democratize data. We believe in the transformative power of the internet and are keen to deliver the most advanced technologies to our subscribers in order to remain the network of choice.”
There is no doubt that the launch of 4G network in by Safaricom is a highly welcomed move. All the same I cannot ignore some of the uninformed reporting being done by some media. Safaricom is not the first telecom to launch 4G network in sub-Saharan Africa. This can be attested to by a publication Innov8tiv ran on Jan. 24 featuring 4G roll-out in Tanzania, Uganda, Ghana and Zimbabwe.
It has also come to my attention that some seasoned tech bloggers have rubbished the entire 4G LTE-A mobile network by Safaricom. According to Kahawatungu.com: “Safaricom always uses the gullible journalist with no technical knowledge to launch products which they know don’t exist…Safaricom’s 4G rides on HSPA+21/42, WiMAX or LTE? Check the speeds bloggers hired to go praise Safaricom were testing. Nothing to boast about:”
Speed test on Lumia 930 with the Safaricom 4G SIM card on. Location: Westlands. pic.twitter.com/L1eLxpvKTX
— Martin Gicheru (@martingicheru) December 4, 2014
Safaricom 4G speedtest on Galaxy S5 ..location Westlands…hosted on Seacom pic.twitter.com/cjiV2HrjmA
— Kachwanya (@kachwanya) December 4, 2014
The above pictures are from bloggers invited to attend the launch event. They had the opportunity to experience the 4G LTE-A by Safaricom before the general public. Basing solely on the above two pictures, then the 100 Mbps connection speed is far from the reality.