Kenya's leading mobile phone operator, Safaricom announced that it has rolled out 4G+ services in major towns on its network, advancing its LTE Advanced (4G) proposition.
The development follows sustained investments by Safaricom in building a robust digital network that can enable it customers to browse faster as well as enjoy improved voice services.
The new technology builds on the growing footprint of Safaricom’s 4G network, which has been activated on over 1,100 sites across Kenya. Already, Safaricom said it has activated 100 4G+ sites in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, as well as parts of Kisii, Naivasha, Kitui, Machakos, Kakamega and Kericho, with more territories scheduled to be switched on in coming months.
According to Safaricom, the 4G+ technology allows peak download speeds of 150Mbps, while 4G enables top speeds of between 60-100Mbps. In practical terms, this means that a 30-minute HD video should take a little over two minutes to download on 4G+, while the same video would take around eight minutes to download on standard 4G, such as that being trialed on other networks in the country.
The technology also enables ‘Carrier Aggregation’, which allows Safaricom customers to benefit from increased bandwidth accessible through the aggregation of different LTE spectrum bands.
The 4G+ stations will supplement the existing 4,677 2G sites, 3,517 3G sites and 1,103 4G sites on Safaricom’s network and will complement its proactive fibre rollout strategy that has seen over 50,000 homes and 1,500 commercial buildings passed by its high speed fibre links.