R2-billion in data revenue for Vodacom

Mobile services giant, Vodacom has delivered solid service revenue growth despite the tough economic times. Its reported a healthy R40.2bln revenue. Video: eNCA

File: Vodacom released results from the first half of 2016 on Monday afternoon. Photo: Getty Images
JOHANNESBURG – Vodacom says data is the company’s growth engine.

The country’s biggest telecomms company by subscribers, now boasts one million data customers, that helped rake in R2.1-billion from data alone.

Vodacom released its 2016 interim results where it reported growth in group service revenue of 5.3 percent from 4.5 percent during the same period last year.

CEO, Shameel Joosub said data revenue for the telecoms company, had improved because of more data users. He said Vodacom continues to find ways that will drop data and voice prices.

One gigabyte of data on the network currently costs R149.

“Data prices have dropped more than 60 percent in the past four years, with voice prices down more than 52 percent,” Joosub said.

He assured users that data prices will go down, but encouraged them to “ take advantage of data bundles” in the meantime.

In September, CEO of Touch Central and former MetroFM presenter Thabo “Tbo Touch” Molefe took to Twitter using the hashtag #DataMustfall, calling for lower prices from cellphone networks.

He appealed to cellular providers to lower their costs within 30 days or he would move to the network provider that did make a change.

Molefe then took his campaign to parliament.

“We urge the House to request networks to have an open conversation about their pricing strategy on data,” he said at the time.

Molefe told MPs there were many countries across Africa where people pay significantly less to access the internet.

“Ghana has half the population [of South Africa] but more networks, but simply because the spectrum was opened…,”he said.

“Our proposal is simple. We never said data must be free. Currently networks are giving away free Whatsapp. If that’s possible they can cut the price in half.”

Telkom will release its interim results on Tuesday.

– eNCA

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