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Tigo ploughs US$75-million into 4G expansion in Tanzania

Tigo ploughs US-million into 4G expansion in Tanzania.

Telecommunications operator, Tigo is to invest as much as $75 million in Tanzania this year as it ramps up its 4G coverage in the African country and adds customer service outlets.

4G, also known as Long Time Evolution (LTE) is a high speed internet connectivity network that is accessible through all Wi-Fi enabled devices such as smartphones, tablets and computers.

Tigo has over 10 million registered mobile network subscribers in the country.

"Tigo will this year be investing over US$ 75 million on the network expansion and quality improvement by scaling up its 4G and 3G sites, fiber network as well as increasing the number of customer service outlets countrywide," Diego Gutierrez, general manager for Tigo, said on Thursday.

The Tanzanian telco started installing 4G on its network in April last year, initially in the capital, Dar Es Salaam. It has since expanded 4G connectivity to other major urban areas and cities such as Arusha, Tanga, Dodoma, Morogoro, Moshi, Mwanza.

With the $75 million investment earmarked for high speed internet connectivity for its mobile network, Tigo says it is now geared to expand 4G coverage to "all major cities" in the country before the end of 2016.

Gutierrez said "the expansion of 4G technology to all corners of the country" was in line with the company's gearing to "provide our customers with world class services that enable them to enjoy a fully digital lifestyle".

Tigo's 4G LTE network provides its subscribers with five times faster internet speeds compared to 3G connectivity. This allows Tanzanian mobile subscribers on the Tigo network using smartphones "to surf and download content and in making uninterrupted Skype calls" from and to many urban areas in the country.

Tigo also has a current partnership with YouTube that allows for "free video streaming" at night time. The rollout of 4G connectivity by Tigo will enhance internet accessibility and usage in Tanzania, added Gutierrez.

Hellen Elibariki, a tour guide based in Arusha, said the tourism industry rides on fast internet connectivity. International tourists visiting the country were always in high demand for reliable internet connectivity, he said.

"Working in the tourism industry means I have local and international contacts that need fast and efficient communication," said Elibariki.

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