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CEO WEEKENDS: MTN South Africa uses street lights as Network Towers

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MTN is distributing antennas on street light poles and setting up purpose-built pole masts with zero visual impact in a drive to improve quality of service and network coverage around northern and west Johannesburg.

The project is in line with a three-year contract  handed to MTN by City Power, after the power utility company called for interested parties to tender RFP (requests for proposals). City Power currently seeks to commercialise its infrastructure.

“The buildings’ density around northern and west Johannesburg has negatively affected the quality of service and network coverage, which has forced the company to consider ways of distributing its infrastructure because of the difficulties experienced with setting up conventional base stations within these areas,” said MTN.

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According to Eben Albertyn, the Chief Technology Officer of MTN South Africa, clients will experience difference in the quality of service once the project is completed.

Albertyn added: “This solution once deployed will benefit our customers greatly since they will begin to experience faster internet speeds, better data and voice experience, improved network coverage and Wi-Fi fall-back once users become mobile.

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“The enhanced data experience will enable users carry out activities that need a lot of bandwidth and that will improve the quality of their lives, which include video conferencing, remote home surveillance and home automation.”

The distribution started this week with the pole site installation in Bryanston. Some of the targeted areas include a number of suburbs within Saxonworld, Randburg, Bryanston and Fourways neighbourhoods.

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Within the next four months, MTN expects to finish the first phase of this project.

The second phase of the project may depend on customer demand, MTN said.

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