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MTL abandons mobile phones

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The Malawi Telecommunications Limited (MTL) has disclosed plans to decommission its mobile phone service by December 2017.

The development comes less than 10 years after the company unveiled the mobile phone service which uses Code Division Multiple Access technology.

The move is likely to affect thousands of customers who subscribed to MTL mobile phone service due to its affordability.

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MTL Corporate Affairs Manager, Tina Das, said the mobile phones will be decommissioned alongside the company’s consumer internet service which uses dongles and routers.

Das said the decommissioning exercise is expected to start from June and will end in December.

Das said the scrapping off of mobile phones and consumer internet service has been necessitated by technological and economic factors.

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“The CDMA and Wimax technologies which were used to deliver the mobile voice and consumer internet services have reached their end of life.

“In addition, the cost of operating the services has proven to be extremely high,” Das said adding that there was lack of supplier support in current generation of technologies.

She said the firm has since halted the sale of gadgets such as mobile phones and dongles, adding that MTL will give customers enough time to exhaust prescribed time as well as bundles bought.

Das was, however, quick to point out that MTL is exploring alternative products and services using different technologies which would be introduced on the market.

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