Orange Botswana pleaded with customers Friday for network interruptions experienced over the course of last month but added that the move was aimed at upgrading the system to ensure better service and more products.
The mobile telephone network company which is currently the fastest growing in the country with its subscriber based having just tipped over 500, 000 of active subscribers at the end of October said the interruptions were due to the fact that they were introducing a more reliable system.
Orange Botswana has been using the old fashioned platform called ferma since 1998 when it started operations but it has just moved close to 95 percent of its client base to a more advanced platform called Intelligent Network (IN).
Ninety-five percent of the clients are pay-as-you-go subscribers while the remaining part is made up of contracted subscribers.
“The new system will enable us to integrate more products and, most important of all, will give our clients clarity, quality and handle more capacity in terms of products,” head of public relations, Karabo Tlhabiwe, told The Sunday Standard on Friday.
“We have just completed the exercise of moving the pre-paid clients from the old platform to IN on November 19,” head of TTM & Special projects, Christopher Diswai, said, and adding that “the situation is under control”.
It is understood that the company might be launching internet services to try to position itself neck and neck with its sole competitor, Mascom Wireless.
That is expected to spur the subscriber base to Orange BotswanaÔÇöespecially in the pre-paid band ÔÇô who are already enjoying a number of competitions and customer loyal programme, which is commonly known as bonus. On the larger picture, the move is aimed at closing out Botswana Telecommunication Corporation which is working on plans of introducing its mobile network.
The BTC decided to come up with its mobile telephony after the liberalization of the sector was announced by government last year.
“The decision to introduce new technology has been on the road map for a long time. It had to be planned and implemented and what we are looking at before new services is to go through the teething problems first,” Diswai said.
Deswai said the new technology would give the pre-paid subscribers same services as the contract subscribers such as recording of the call duration to ensure that people do not feel cheated.