Telecommunications is among South Africa’s fastest-growing industries and is likely to continue expanding driven by rapid growth in mobile phone use and broadband connectivity, according to a report in HeraldOnline.
The country that invented touch-tone dialing has a network that is 99.9 percent digital and includes the latest in fixed-line, wireless and satellite communication, making for the most developed telecom network in Africa, a Research and Markets report said.
The report, named “Telecom Industry in South Africa – Forecast, Opportunities & Trends 2013-2017,” is a new offering by the research company.
Top players in South Africa’s telecommunications market include Telkom, Tata Communications, Vodacom and MTN.
Multinational companies Vodacom and MTN dominate the mobile market, with the smaller Cell C coming in at No. 3. In 2010, Telkom entered the mobile market with its own offering, 8ta, which will run off MTN’s network infrastructure until Telkom rolls out its own base stations, the report said. There are also two mobile virtual network operators – cell-phone companies that operate in partnership with an existing mobile company whose infrastructure they also use.
The report included the following blip on South Africa’s telecommunications radar screen: “Noteworthy developments in South Africa’s telecoms sector include the suspension of the much-awaited framework for the allocation of spectrum for mobile broadband services. The telecoms regulator took the decision in March 2012 to suspend the process pending the publication of the government’s revised broadband policy, which could influence its policies on the use of available spectrum. In many countries, policies on new spectrum allocation are often designed to facilitate the extension of wireless broadband services to rural areas.”