Technology / 6 June 2018, 06:30am / Staff reporter
CAPE TOWN - The Department of Telecommunications has released its latest presentation on the South Africa Connect policy.
What is this policy?
The policy aims to increase Internet connectivity across South Africa. The department’s presentation covers multiple aspects of connectivity in South Africa, including the latest fibre connectivity figures in the country.
According to statistics from the FTTX Council, the department said 280,000 homes are connected to fibre in South Africa as of March 2018.
This is 191, 000 more homes since 2017. The number of home passed by fibre has also increased, going from 439,000 in March 2017 to 933,000 in March 2018 a year-on-year growth of 112%.
The department’s presentation follows Telkom’s recent financial results for the year ended 31 March 2018. Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko said in his results presentation that the company has connected 109,336 homes with Openserve fibre.
Additionally, other companies such as Vumatel are also driving fibre in South Africa, with projects to roll out fibre networks in suburban areas and townships.
3G and 4G coverage
4G/LTE coverage was measured at 77% in 2017, up from 53% in 2015.
3G coverage has remained flat, at 99% in 2017 and 2016.
The graph below shows the growth of 4G/LTE coverage in South Africa, based on statistics from ICASA.
The implementation of 5G initiatives
Recently, At the Wireless World Research Forum people from across the globe gathered to delve into the different opportunities that 5G technology offers.
The technology event was held in partnership with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
The aim of the meeting was to provide a platform where people can discuss the roles of 5G technologies to maximise opportunities by merging innovations in spectrum utilisation, network infrastructure, regulatory frameworks and business models, to allow for digital inclusion and industrialisation in Africa.
A representative from ICASA gave a presentation during the session about 5G.
While addressing those in attendance he said that developing countries sometimes do not have as much resources as those in developing countries and that is why we have to catch up and because of that people should be attending conferences like this one.
He also said that ICASA has a role of ensuring the socio-economic development of the country. He added that the regulatory body should facilitate innovation.