Cell C is in the process of moving entirely onto MTN’s network, which will result in the company switching off its radio access network.
This infrastructure sharing strategy will help Cell C to cut down on network investments and still get the benefit from an excellent service through MTN.
This will be the first time that a South African mobile operator shuts down its radio network, which raises questions as to what will happen with its equipment and spectrum.
Cell C CEO Douglas Craigie Stevenson told MyBroadband some of their radio network equipment will be sold, which will generate money for the company.
There are also components of its radio network which are leased, which will be given back to the companies it leases it from.
He added that MTN will not use any of Cell C’s current radio equipment to offer services to Cell C.
“As Cell C deconstructs its network over the transition period, traffic will be moved from our physical radio network to the virtual radio network provisioned for us by MTN,” he said.
One of the big questions is what will happen to Cell C’s spectrum, especially after Telkom lodged a complaint about Vodacom and Rain’s network arrangement.
Craigie Stevenson said their spectrum will be used “by Cell C on the new virtual network that MTN is providing”.
He made it clear that they are still in full control of their spectrum and are using it to support their customer base.
Cell C is not an MVNO
With Cell C switching off its full radio network and moving to “a virtual network provided by MTN”, many people view it as a super MVNO (mobile virtual network operator).
Craigie Stevenson dismissed this view, saying apart from not having a radio access network, they remain a fully-fledged mobile operator.
He said Cell C will still maintain a core network and can still choose to increase or decrease its coverage footprint.
It also has control over network quality, it remains a spectrum license holder, and controls its network investment.
Cell C will keep its voice interconnect agreements with other operators and hold on to its number range.
The image below provides an overview of the difference between Cell C and an MVNO.
A Nigerian company E.F. Network Ltd, has developed a mobile application that can make a device unusable by thieves, to curb theft or resale of mobile phones and other gadgets in the country.
Mr Ameh Ochojila, the company's public relations officer said this in a statement on Tuesday, in Abuja.
Ochojila, said that the application named 'ephonetaxi' will help provide solution to the growing number of stolen phones in the country and across the globe.
"The application 'ephonetaxi' helps to lock out anyone who is unauthorised to use the phone, making it unusable and unsellable," he said.
According to him, the application is designed to protect phone owners and the information stored on their phones from being compromised in the event of a phone theft.
"The application helps retrieve and send the user's stored contents to his email.
"It also locks the phone, prevents either unauthorised access to stored pictures, videos, messages, or contacts of the phone owner.
"The app alerts the phone owner of any change in SIM card, monitors, and tracks the phone location including taking pictures of criminals in possession of the phone and sending the pictures to the email address of the owner," he said.
Ochojila added: "The owner can do all these remotely in spite of the phone being lost or stolen.
"Once a phone is locked remotely by the owner, buying it will be a mere waste of money."
The technical manager of the company, Mr Kelvin Raymond said that the application could also be used to trace kidnappers as it can reveal real-time location of mobile phones.
Mr Gideon Egbuchulam, Chairman of the company said that the application was one of the application lined up by the company to meet technical and software needs of Nigerians.
Egbuchulam said that the company had opened an incubation centre in Abuja where he planned to recruit brilliant young Nigerian Information Technology (IT) professionals.
"Given enabling environment, Nigerian youths will take Nigeria to the next Silicon Valley in Africa.
"Almost all giant tech companies in the world are interested in the Nigerian market and that is the reason our company is recruiting over 1000 people by the end of 2020 to support talented youths," he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that available data showed that in 2016 alone, over 400,000 phones were stolen in the UK, with a good number of them shipped abroad for resale.
The data also showed that many of the stolen phones were first sold to criminal gangs who tried to access them for information that could be used to hack bank accounts of their owners, before selling them to end users.
About 29 million Tanzanians head to the polls on Wednesday to elect new leaders with the world watching the big race pitting the opposition's Tundu Lissu against President John Magufuli.
In his address to the nation on Tuesday, President Magufuli urged Tanzanians to turn out in large numbers to exercise their democratic right, despite the arrest of opposition politicians in Zanzibar.
"Our campaigns have been conducted in an environment of peace and tranquillity," said the President. "Our security agencies did a commendable job," he added.
In Zanzibar, the main opposition party said Tuesday three people had been killed by police on the archipelago's island of Pemba, as clashes erupted ahead of Tanzania's elections.
Police fired teargas and live rounds, and brutally beat a young man in the opposition stronghold of Garagara as security forces began voting a day before presidential and parliamentary elections.
The opposition believes the special day of early voting is a ploy to steal the election on an island with a history of contested polls, and vowed they would try and vote on the same day.
Violence erupted on Pemba, an opposition stronghold, as the army distributed ballots which opposition supporters believed were pre-marked.
"Verified reports from Pemba in Zanzibar indicate that three citizens have been shot dead by the police using live ammunition," read a statement from the opposition ACT-Wazalendo (Alliance for Change and Transparency) party.
However, police dismissed the allegations. "We have not received any reports about such deaths and we do not expect anything of that nature," Inspector-General of Police Simon Sirro told reporters.
Speaking in Dar es Salaam, he said police were holding 42 people in Zanzibar over allegations of attacking officers distributing ballot boxes.
African Union Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat pleaded for peace and called for credible and inclusive elections.
"The chairperson calls for all stakeholders, political parties and their supporters to participate in the voting process peacefully and refrain from any acts of violence. He further urges the authorities to ensure a conducive environment to enable citizens to cast their votes in a safe and peaceful manner," Mr Faki's spokesperson said in a statement.
Former Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan will lead a team of observers from the AU, while ex-Burundi President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya will lead 59 monitors from the East African Community.
The EAC will deploy teams in Dar es Salaam, Tanga, Lindi, Mtwara, Dodoma, Mbeya, Kigoma, Singida, Kilimanjaro, Morogoro and Mwanza regions and Zanzibar's twin Islands of Pemba and Unguja.
The ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi has been in existence, and in power, since 1977, becoming Africa's second-longest ruling party. Although there are 15 presidential candidates this time, President Magufuli's strongest challenge comes from Lissu, even though he is expected to be re-elected.
But some observers have already found the electoral process skewed in favour of the CCM. "It is difficult to guarantee electoral justice in Tanzania in light of the prevailing legal and constitutional framework and context," the Tanzania Elections Watch,a virtual group of experts on the polls co-chaired by former Chief Justice Willy Mutunga and Ugandan legal experts, Frederick Ssempebwa and Ms Alice Mogwe, said.
"Ensuring electoral justice will require significant constitutional and legal reforms for which there has so far been no political will to embark on." Ahead of the polls, the government has been accused of either passing laws that impede fairness or retaining policies that favour CCM.
The National Electoral Commission (NEC) has a final say on presidential election results and no court challenge is allowed.
"It is not to say that an election becomes free and fair because of the positive comments of the observers. We do not think this election will be free and fair, not even if the opposition wins, against all odds. What we need are conditions of good governance in the entire election season," Prof Ssempebwa said on Thursday.
The NEC has accredited some 96 local and foreign organisations eligible for observer status, but it excludes major players like the Catholic Church and rights watch groups.
This will be first exercise since multiparty democracy with no support from the UNDP, after Dar refused to admit an assessment mission from the global agency.
"When we shut down political space, when we shut down civil space, we risk delegitimising those who govern us," argued Donald Deya, the CEO of the Pan-African Lawyers Union, warning the restrictions could fuel violence.