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Botswana Telecommunications Corporation to build on broadband buoyancy

While fixed voice telephony penetration has stalled for Botswana Telecommunications Corporation (BTC), demand for high-speed internet services has led to an increased uptake of fixed broadband.

Lorato Boakgomo-Ntakhwana, BTC Board Chairperson, said, “Fixed voice telephony penetration and usage remained stagnant throughout 2021-22; however, rising demand for high-speed internet services and our competitively priced fibre broadband plans have been driving uptake of fixed broadband (FBB).”

Stagnant growth in fixed voice telephony aside, BTC confirmed that post-COVID-19 return of trade has spurred international fixed voice calling.

The company said it has managed to keep the momentum with competitive pricing, although mobile voice revenue has taken a knock due to the increased use of third-party Over -the-Top (OTT) services.

“We have embarked on extending and expanding our 4G Network coverage which should boost mobile video calling; and partially offset voice revenue losses that we are currently experiencing,” said Boakgomo-Ntakhwana.

She added that growth in mobile broadband during the past two years has been mainly driven by COVID-19 restrictions which fuelled demand for high-quality internet connection.

BTC has 700 mobile base station sites distributed across the country, over 500 of which are LTE/4.5G-enabled.

BTC seeks to improve and grow broadband services by deploying Fibre-to-the-Business (FTTB) and Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC) technologies to utilise existing copper line plants as well as introduce Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH) technology in some areas.

“The targeted areas of deployment are the brownfields that already have passive cabinets that extend more than 1.2km from existing BTC exchanges,” said Boakgomo-Ntakwana.

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