March 27, 2018 / 10:29 AM / 10 months ago

Vodafone plans to launch voice over data service in Zambia

FILE PHOTO - A woman talks on her mobile phone as she walks past a Vodafone store in London September 2, 2013. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth

LUSAKA (Reuters) - Vodafone (VOD.L) will launch voice service in Zambia within three months under a newly acquired licence from the Southern African nation’s communications regulator, the firm said on Tuesday.

Vodafone Zambia chief executive Lars Stork said in a statement the Zambia Information and Communications Technology Authority had allowed it to launch voice over data service, in addition to its current data-only offering.

“Today our LTE network is solely used for data traffic, however our vision and strategy is to offer best in class data and now also voice over data on our 4G network,” Stork said.

South Africa’s MTN (MTNJ.J), India’s Bharti Airtel (BRTI.NS) and state-owned Zamtel are the only mobile phone operators currently offering voice services in Zambia.

Zambia last week selected a unit of Dutch company Unitel International Holdings as the country’s fourth mobile phone service provider.

Reporting by Chris Mfula; Editing by James Macharia

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