Africell, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)-based subsidiary of Lintel Holding, is to launch 3G internet services in the country in January 2015, according to BizTechAfrica citing Africell official Stanley Mbayo. The operator launched commercial 2G services in November 2012 and is the third-placed mobile service provider in the DRC in terms of subscribers with 15.2% of the market share at 30 September 2014. TeleGeography reported in August that Africell was to roll out 3G technology before the end of the year; Mbayo has commented: ‘Yes, we were supposed to launch 3G service in December this year, but we had to postpone it for some technical reasons. However, we were told at a meeting held mid-week that high speed internet is definitely coming in January.’
Africell DRC is yet to sign interconnection agreements with rival operators Vodacom, Airtel and Oasis following a punishment awarded by the Autorite de Regulation des Postes et Telecom (ARPTC) for Africell’s introduction of cut price tariffs, deemed unacceptably low. Subscribers to the Congolese operator are limited to on-net calls via its 2G network, with reports suggesting a similar scenario will take place with its 3G network.