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MTN stuns market with pre-paid cut to 79c

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MTN has stunned the market by being the first to introduce a new reduced rate for pre-paid calls, following the reduction of the interconnect fee from 40c to 20c.

Despite claims that the new interconnect fee of 20c per call between networks – slashed from 40c by regulator Icasa – would have no effect on call costs, MTN South Africa has introduced a flat rate of 79c per minute across all networks for its prepaid customers, effective immediately.

The move has stunned the market, as MTN is usually the last-mover on pricing.

“At MTN we pride ourselves in listening to the voices of our customers and understanding their needs, especially in tough times,” says Brian Gouldie, Chief Marketing Officer of MTN South Africa. “As a truly South African company, it is our obligation to ensure quality communication at affordable prices. Our new 79 cents flat promotional rate is designed to stimulate the industry to provide even more affordable services to consumers, understanding their need for connectivity”.

The 79c flat rate is accessible to MTN customers from 11 April 2014 for the next three months, with the intention to make this a permanent rate. The rate is applicable at per second rates, giving customers peace of mind that they will only be charged for the actual time they spend on calls. Through its extensive network investment, MTN will ensure that there is ample capacity available for customers.

All existing customers on MTN Pay Per Second will automatically benefit from this rate. New customers will default to the new flat rate, while MTN customers not on MTN Pay Per Second can simply dial *141*4*4# to migrate. MTN Zone customers can access the rate through the recently introduced MTN Pay As You Go value bundles by dialling *141* to purchase the bundle of their choice, between R7, R12 and R30 value denominations – each offering their own value-adds.

“We appreciate the support that our customers have shown us. Our job is to make sure that we continue to address the unique requirements of a cross-section of the South African market. By giving our prepaid users access to a flat rate of 79c per minute, MTN is showing that it is constantly listening to its customers and redefining what mobile communication should be about,” says Gouldie.

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However, at a (Vodacom) data-bundle cost of R220.00 per 750 MB or R279.00 per 1 GB – which is gobbled-up in no time – I am now some R939.00 out of pocket. Which, let’s face it, is ridiculous and unacceptable. Especially, as my normal Telkom package of 5 GB costs a quarter of the price.

The day that, e.g., MTN offers 5 GB of data at a one-off price of (around) R230.00 – I’ll say “NOW we’re talking!””,”body-href”:””}]

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