Newly-licensed wireless operator Swazi Mobile, which is headed by local tycoon Victor Gamedze, has launched 2G/3G/4G mobile services in the country. The new operator advertises services in 28 towns at launch, with plans to extend the footprint to 80% of the population by 1 October 2017. The company is offering three plans: pre-paid, contract and social (which caters for the elderly). Network calls will cost SZL1.10 (USD0.08) during peak hours and SZL0.66 (off-peak) for pay-as-you-go customers, while the standard data charge is SZL0.80. Post-paid subscription packages, meanwhile, start at SZL295, while the social plan will cost SZL240 (60 calls and messages).
The newcomer, was awarded a concession by the Swaziland Communications Commission (SCCOM) in December 2016, fending off competition from locally-owned SDnet (a tie-up between Data Net and Ndlaphu Financial Services), and international telecoms providers Viettel Group and Orange-backed Mauritius Telecom. Swazi Mobile is aiming to invest SZL600 million in its networks over the course of the next five years.