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UCC Investigates Airtel Over Reported Fake 4G Network

The Uganda Communications Commission has today, 22nd July, 2019, written to Airtel Uganda Limited, directing the telecommunications company to furnish the Commission with technical evidence on the capacity of its 4G network across the country.

This follows complaints received from some members of the public regarding the quality and internet speeds on the Airtel 4G network.

“The complaints allege that Airtel Uganda Ltd is misrepresenting to the public that it is providing a 4G network service across the country, whereas not,” UCC says in its latest blog.

It adds: “Following preliminary investigations conducted in the sampled towns of Kampala, Mukono, Entebbe and Jinja to establish the level of coverage and download throughput of Airtel’s 4G network, the Commission found that whereas Airtel’s LTE signal was available in over 90% of the areas sampled, the network speeds were much lower than what is internationally expected for a 4G network service.”

Consequently, UCC adds, in accordance with sections 45 and 48 of the Uganda Communications Act 2013 and Regulation 28 of the Communications (Practice and Procedure) Regulations 2005, Airtel Uganda Limited has been asked to:

 Furnish the Commission with technical evidence to prove that it provides the claimed 100% 4G network service across Uganda in terms of performance and geographical coverage.

Show cause why regulatory sanction(s) should not be instituted against Airtel Uganda Limited for misrepresenting to its customers and the general public about its network quality and speeds.

Airtel Uganda Limited is required to submit the requisite evidence and representations within fourteen (14) days.

Airtel Uganda launched 4GLTE mobile telecommunications technology in September 2017.

This followed the return of V.G. Somasekhar to Airtel Uganda as Managing Director.

Airtel said the upgrade to 4GLTE came after its significant countrywide investment in setting up 404 LTE sites in Kampala and 126 sites upcountry.

With this new technology, Airtel assured subscribers around the country of the fastest available speeds as well as an improved experience in internet-based activities such as video conferencing, mobile web access, amongst others.

Taddewo William Senyonyi
William is a seasoned business and finance journalist. He is also an agripreneur and a coffee enthusiast.

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