Ghanaian operator Surfline Communications has launched Ghana’s first commercial 4G Frequency Division Duplexing Long Term Evolution (FDD-LTE) network in Accra and Tema, Business Ghana reports. Rosy Fynn, marketing director for Surfline, revealed that the operator has deployed 220 LTE sites in the Greater Accra region and is planning to expand the service to other regional capitals in the coming years. She pointed out that the 4G LTE network is capable of supporting maximum theoretical download speeds of up to 100Mbps, while real world speeds are likely to average around 80Mbps. Prospective subscribers can initially access the 4G network via the ‘Surfline MiFi’ router (currently offered for free), which supports up to ten tablets, PCs, notebooks and Wi-Fi devices, while LTE-capable tablets are set to be unveiled in the near future. However, Surfline is not currently planning to provide voice services over the network. The price of data bundles ranges from GHS25 (USD6.46) for 1GB of data to GHS445 for a premium 50GB bundle.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, privately-owned Surfline Communications was established in 2011, and contracted French-US vendor Alcatel-Lucent in July 2013 to deploy a commercial LTE network. In June 2014 Surfline trialled the technology via its ‘Press Play’ testing programme, which allowed participants in selected areas of Greater Accra to receive free connectivity in exchange for their feedback on the service.