JOHANNESBURG – SOME five (5) million economically marginalised South Africans –about a tenth of the total population- are to benefit from MTN’s slashing of its out-of-bundle (OOB) data pricing by up to 80 percent.
This is among some announcements made by the mobile network operator, alongside 1GB for R50 promotion, in Johannesburg on Thursday.
With immediate effect these customers will pay 29c per megabyte (MB).
The first of the new pricing segments will see customers who use equal to or less than 5MB of OOB data per month paying that rate.
“We see that lower income data users tend use data for simple messaging, using over-the-top platforms such as WhatsApp and that usage is often
below 5MB a month,” Godfrey Motsa, MTN South Africa Chief Executive Officer, said.
He said the digital divide affected poor South Africans the most and MTN aspired to make it cheaper for this economically marginalised section of
the nation to communicate.
“This is why we’re implementing the 29c per MB rate for customers using 5MB or less of OOB data per month,” said.
MTN also announced the 1GB for R50 promotion will return for December 2017 and will be exclusively available off the MyMTN app.
Motsa said the revised OOB data pricing and the 1GB promotion reflect MTN’s commitment to reducing the cost of accessing the internet.
“We have made these data pricing reductions despite the spectrum crunch that continues to hamper our industry but there is absolutely no doubt
that the release of spectrum will allow us to continue dropping the price of data,” Motsa said.
He also appealed to authorities to complement the company to enable further reductions.
“We call on Minister Siyabonga Cwele of the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services to release the much-needed spectrum that will boost the industry’s capacity and allow MTN to further drive down the cost of communication, especially for the rural poor,” he said.
– CAJ News