Reuters is reporting that South African-based low-cost telecoms firm Smile Communications has been awarded a telecoms licence by the Ugandan government. Smile Communications, led by former MTN Group director Irene Charnley, plans to provide affordable communications to the poor and is seeking other expansion opportunities across Africa and the Middle East. Smile plans to offer free telephone numbers and voice message boxes to customers, whether they own a handset or not. A customer will be provided with a secure PIN code to use on any Smile phone. Smile Communications will operate through agents, which provide mobile handsets in street kiosks, stalls and payphones.
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