by MARCUS MSHONGA
HARARE – ZIMBABWEAN commuters can now access free Wi-Fi on board public transport.
The Southern African country’s leading mobile network operator, Econet Wireless, has launched this industry-first service accessible in commuter minibuses, commonly known in the country as kombis.
Executives said the launch of the service, which supports Econet’s popular Data Double Up solution, followed realisation that while kombis were Zimbabwe’s largest mode of public transport, commuters did not access Wi-Fi.
Econet Wireless’ chief operating officer, Fayaz King, expressed excitement at the launch of the service.
“I am excited and happy for our customers, most of whom use public transport on a daily basis. Now they don’t have to wait until they get off the kombi to check their mails, browse their favourite sites or to stream video content,” King said.
King explained customers would immensely benefit from free Wi-Fi data for any data bundle purchased while on kombis “anytime and anywhere, on the go.”
“For every purchase of a data bundle, customers get extra 100 percent free Wi-Fi data that they can use when riding in a kombi,” King added.
Econet will soon be rolling out the service to major cities across Zimbabwe, where it has the largest market share with 10 million subscribers.
This represents a market share of over 49 percent.
Kombis are the most popular form of public transport in Zimbabwe a result of the decline of formal city transport once dominated by government run carriers.
The mode of transport is usually used by Zimbabwean companies as mobile billboards.