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Cell C revamps

Read time 3min 10sec

Third mobile operator Cell C today unveiled a new logo and has teamed up with comedian Trevor Noah as it rolls out an extensive customer centric campaign.

Noah recently poked fun at SA's horrendous cellular market, zeroing in on Cell C as the worst of the lot. Cell C responded with a full-page advert in major newspapers across the country apologising to its customers for dropped calls and spotty coverage.

In the advert, the operator also outlined a turnaround strategy, which included the roll out of its 4Gs network, as well as a new customer care and billing system. The operator emphasised that it was aware how frustrated South Africans are with the cellphone industry and said it was committed to change.

Trevor Noah for Cell C CEO

At a press briefing this morning, Cell C announced that it has completely rebranded itself as a customer centric organisation, with a new logo, and Trevor Noah as its customer experience officer (C.E.O).

“We know we have to improve. Clearly, we have to improve,” stated Cell C CEO Lars Reichelt. He explained that Cell C has no intention of expanding beyond SA so the operator's success would have to be determined within this country.

For this reason, Cell C has unveiled a corporate identity that includes a six-colour bar, which represents the colours of the South African flag. The revamp also includes the unveiling of a complaints Web site: TellTrevor.co.za

This part of the campaign will be focused on inviting customers to participate with Cell C to improve and transform the organisation. Noah will play a watch dog role on the site, encouraging customers to complain.

The Web site will also give customers from all networks the opportunity to indicate where their calls drop or where they have connectivity issues.

Noah highlighted that he was working with Cell C and not for Cell C and vowed to remain objective and critical of whether or not the operator was improving.

City-by-city

The company also gave an update on its 4Gs ['s' stands for speed and service, accordimng to Cell C] network, which it believes will solve many of the service-related issues its customers have been experiencing.

Cell C's 4Gs network will be rolled out city-by-city to six cities across SA within the coming weeks. The network is neither 4G nor LTE, but is an improvement on 3G.

Reichelt noted the concept of 4G has not yet been defined by the global industry, but Cell C's network is based on software - defined radio technology - which could be adapted for LTE or anything else in the future.

The operator also committed to 34% coverage of the South African population by the end of the year and 67% population coverage by mid 2011

Reichelt noted that the new network would be based on HSPA+ technology and would operate in the 900MHz and 2100MHz frequency bands.

He explained that its HSPA+ 900 transmitter allows for coverage in areas that may not have been economically viable before and speeds up roll-out of high-speed broadband to larger numbers of consumers.

The decision to go with HSPA+ 900 allows for lower capital and operating expenditure, allowing for more competitive offerings going forward, added Reichelt.

Cell C has already rolled out more than 1 300 HSPA+ 900 transmitters with a fibre backbone and IP access secured. Reichelt added that the company currently has hundreds of users testing the service in six cities, with encouraging results.

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