LTE Roll-out FAQ for Existing Wimax and SV Clients
Further to our previous SMS, Microlink is delighted to announce we have a launch date for WIZ our LTE 4G product. WIZ LTE marks a significant progression in terms of speeds over Wimax. Our packages are attractively priced and we hope you will be prepared to migrate to LTE.
When is LTE being rolled-out?
The current estimated roll-out date for Lusaka is Wednesday February 15th2017. We are hoping to roll-out in Kitwe, Ndola and Livingstone in mid-March 2017.
Will I be able to continue to use my Wimax/SV service?
We will run LTE side-by-side with Wimax initially, but ultimately this not a long-term solution either for us or the client. Given the advantages of LTE across so many areas we would strongly recommend migrating to LTE. Besides the technical superiority of the system and the equipment versatility the new LTE system has considerably better packages for clients which offer better speeds and more data at all levels of pricing. In other words you get more bang for your buck. At some stage, we will stop supporting WIMAX. In order to try to encourage migration we are offering a permanent 10% discount on all the standard LTE monthly unlimited packages (provided accounts remain in good standing) if migration is done within the first month of the launch.
If you wish to pre-order your migration and lock in your discount, then please enter the following details here.
What do I need to do to migrate from Wimax to LTE?
You will need new equipment (unless you currently have a phone which caters for LTE Band 41 which the new Apple and Samsung 7 phones do or a MiFi router also which has Band 41). You will be issued with a simcard unique to you. The type of equipment required will be most appropriate not only to your personal needs but also the coverage area. Some clients prefer the fixed nature of an external unit as opposed to a portable MiFi router which their teenage son could pocket and ensure the family is without the internet. Some may prefer an internal unit if they want to take it to the office and then back home is both areas have good coverage.
What type of equipment will work for my area?
After we have finished our testing of the network you will be able to access the WIZ website which allows you to enter your area and see what equipment will work for you. However, based on the Airspan RF planning we have these ball park figures:
- A fixed external radio (ODU in LTE terminology) will cover 99% of the 227 sqm coverage area.
- An internal radio (IDU in LTE terminology) will cover 63% of the 227 sqm coverage area. They will cover other areas but the upload speeds may not be sufficiently high enough for our standards. Thus, a large number of current Wimax clients (who are predominantly external CPE users) may elect to with an Internal instead of an External.
- A MiFi router or a Smartphone used outdoors will cover 80% of the coverage map where our criteria is 2mbps down and 0.5 mbps up. Thus those living in a well-covered area may elect for one of these.
What will it cost you?
· If you wish to simply have no contract then we will be charging a one-off equipment/installation charge of K 500 inclusive of VAT plus swapping your old equipment out for the new equipment, simcard, activation and installation. If, however, you have only owned the Wimax equipment for less than 6 months we will waive the charge.
· If you are unhappy with your choice of equipment you will have the opportunity to swap to a different type of equipment without charge provided you do it within one month of migration/activation.
· If you wish to sign year and effectively be a post-paid client, then the equipment will be for free.
What packages do you offer?
All monthly unlimited packages can be found on our wiz.co.zm website. They are all VAT inclusive. You will note they differ from the old SV package in terms of the maximum speeds, lower contention ratios and more generous Turbo GB. All packages are what we call Turbo where a given amount of data is provided initially as fast as we can. We think these rates not only compare well with our previous prices but are also something no other provider is currently offering. We continue to make our UNLIMITED packages the defining feature of what makes us different from everyone else. Monthly unlimited prices can be accessed here.
In common with all other providers we are offering bundles. We believe they are very competitively priced and if this is your preference we offer a variety over differing timer periods. Again, they can be found on wiz.co.zm. We have added a little tweak to these bundle prices are based on the 1 month pricing but we are also adding daily, weekly and three month bundles for the same amount of data required. Three monthly price are 150% more than the monthly equivalent, weekly prices are half of the monthly equivalent, while daily prices are 25% of the monthly.Bundle prices can be accessed here.
We are anticipating that most LTE clients will be pre-paid. In other words, when you pay for your monthly package it will function until the same day of the following month. If you have not topped up your package, you will be disabled (warning message will be sent). If you wish to top up a few days later for example then you will be immediately activated and the service will run until the same the day you topped up for the next 30/31 days.So, there will be no monthly invoice on the first of each month as is current practice. However, if you wish to remain a post-paid client (as most of you currently are) and be billed monthly as per the current structure then we have no problems with that and this should be indicated at the time of signing up for migration.
Payment can be done as per normal at our office branches or IZONEs. We would also like to point out that we do accept debit and credit cards and we have PoS machines at many of our branches and IZONES.
We do have a WIZ app which can be downloaded from the Google Store (currently we have only uploaded an android app). We will upload an app on the Apple iStore shortly.
The app contains much of the information pertinent to your account such as your account details, your account history, the data you have used, the package you are on, the cash available to top-up or renew your monthly package, etc.
What do I do if I want to migrate?
If you do wish to migrate in the first month you will get a 10% discount on an ongoing basis for the Monthly package you select (assuming you are current with your existing account). That 10% discount will continue to be determined and effective if you decide to upgrade or downgrade but will be based on the price for that package.
There are a few ways to proceed with migration:
1. Firstly, you could go to wiz.co.zm and enter your details on the order form. You would be able to look at the coverage map and select the requisite equipment. If you wished to make payment (either online or through visiting our stores/offcies), then you could go firm with the order and you would be prioritised in the waiting list. Please appreciate that you will need to be current with your existing account. If you did not wish to make payment, then you would be contacted when we had migrated those who have paid and will be asked if you wish to go ahead. On payment, we will schedule the migration.
2. Secondly, if you have a relationship with customer care or your sales account manager you can get in touch with them or ask them to call you.
3. Thirdly you can contact us on the WIZ Twitter and Facebook pages.
4. Fourthly you can come into one of our offices or IZONEs.
What are the contact numbers and telephone number:
Web site: wiz.co.zm
Phones: +260-953-284-389 / +260-972-365-806
What are the advantages of LTE versus WIMAX
1. In Lusaka we have 3 times the number of repeaters with each sector having 6 times the bandwidth capacity. So we are able to have close to 20 times the aggregate internet bandwidth available on LTE compared to Wimax today. Similar bandwidth multiple expansions will be available in the other three towns.
2. Because of the greater number of repeaters, the last mile link will be considerably faster and far higher maximum speeds (down and up) will be more standard.
3. There will be no congestion for the next few years and we intend to acquire more equipment well before then.
4. One can use a variety of equipment on LTE from external fixed radios (ODUs), internal radios (IDUs), MiFi routers and Smartphones.
What is the coverage area for LTE?
The coverage area will be greater than we currently have for Lusaka and many of the outlying suburbs and areas are covered. The coverage area is a not insubstantial 227 square kilometres or 50% more than our Wimax coverage area. Areas like Chilanga, Makeni, Chelston and Avondale now will be able to receive good signals.
While this is the most significant
development in our15-year history, we do feel we need to take this to the next
conclusion. Accordingly, we are hoping to have an LTE service in Lusaka with
full mobility by Q3 2017. This will mean doubling the number of repeaters but
this should mean clients will be able to use the WIZ service anywhere in Lusaka
any form of equipment.