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MTN moves to upgrade network, crash smartphone price

The MTN Group has signed a deal with telecom equipment manufacturer, Ericsson, to upgrade its core network in South Africa and Nigeria. MTN last week…

The MTN Group has signed a deal with telecom equipment manufacturer, Ericsson, to upgrade its core network in South Africa and Nigeria.

MTN last week experienced a serious network glitch, which marred its voice and data services across the country.

But according to the telco, building on existing partnerships for cloud-native core network deployment with Ericsson in both countries, the modernisation would ensure the readiness of MTN Nigeria’s and MTN South Africa’s network infrastructure to enable 5G standalone in the future.

The mobile operator disclosed in a statement that the initiative aligned with its principles and objectives outlined in the Unified Cloud Acceleration framework, spanning five years.

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The Chief Technology and Information Officer of MTN Group, Mazen Mroué, was quoted in the statement as saying, “We are embarking on a strategic transformation programme to modernise and upgrade our core network infrastructure, signifying a commitment to enhancing network performance and efficiency in respective markets.

Meanwhile, MTN Nigeria has said it is  committed to smartphone affordability and gigital inclusion in the country.

MTN CEO in Nigeria, Karl Toriola, who disclosed this while discussing the company’s efforts to make smartphones more affordable and accessible in Nigeria in an interview with Arise TV said device affordability is a significant barrier to digital inclusion in Nigeria.

Toriola also highlighted the potential of local assembly and financing schemes to further reduce the cost of smartphones.

He explained, “Local assembly does a number of things. First of all, it can bring down the cost of production, it eliminates custom duties and then you talk about financing handsets and for that financing ecosystem to work you need to have aggregate credit scoring history to know who to loan to, recovery capabilities etcetera etcetera.”

He revealed that MTN is already partnering with several companies in Africa to develop this financing ecosystem.

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