Emma Okonji

ntel, which acquired NITEL and MTel, to become Nigeria’s fifth GSM mobile network operator, on Friday, commenced its phased commercial rollout of telecoms services in Lagos and Abuja, on its 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) advanced network.

The rollout, which comes with bumper offers for pioneer customers and data users, is offering the first one hundred thousand customers that will redeem and activate their ntel SIMs by the end of April, a free on-net calls for life, while data subscribers will get three months unlimited data usage.

What this means is that the first one hundred thousand customers on the ntel network that are enlisted into the ntel pioneer club, will have the opportunity to make free calls for as long as the ntel network exists, but the free call will be restricted to the pioneer members only, who could call themselves for free, using ntel to ntel line only.

Announcing the phased rollout in Lagos at the weekend, the Chief Executive Officer of ntel, Mr. Kamar Abass, said because the network operates Voice over LTE (VoLTE), driven by the resuscitated Sat-3 submarine cable now owned by ntel, it would be able to cover the entire Lagos and Abuja in the next four to six weeks, before extending its rollout plans to Port Harcourt and other cities of the country.

According to Abass, ntel is already discussing with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) that would manufacture 4G devices that are compatible with the ntel 4G LTE advanced network. “We are already in partnership with select OEMs like Samsung, Tecno,  Infinix, Huawei, Konka, ZTE, among others to produce Tiers 1, 2 and 3 mobile devices that could spread across all categories of customers, irrespective of their social status.
He said the very earliest customers could buy and use the ntel services in clusters, across Lagos and Abuja from sales outlets and agents.

The company said its 4GLTE advanced technology, that is built on the 900MHz  and 1800MHz spectrum, would deliver an unbeatable and game-changing customer experience of high speed internet access, up to 23 megabytes per second, which is the fastest available in Nigeria today, thus enabling a world of full mobile broadband experiences that would transform both lives and livelihoods.

“We are passionate at ntel about the power of broadband to boost productivity and transform lives. We expect to see this happen as ntel helps to accelerate the ongoing migration from existing 2G and 3G services, to genuinely high-speed mobile broadband on 4GLTE-Advanced,” Abass said.

In order to promote eco-friendly environment, ntel said it would not be selling paper or plastic made recharge cards to its customers. It said adequate arrangements have been made through agents vendors to virtually top airtime on customers’ phones. Customers can also use the various Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) available to them to top up airtime, or better still, top up airtime directly from their 4G compatible mobile devices without the need for recharge card vendors.