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The newest telecoms company in Nigeria, NatCom, launched their services last Friday. NatCom, which will be operating under the business name of ntel, bought the government-owned NITEL in April last year in a deal worth $252 million dollars. This ended the protracted sale of NITEL that was grounded by mismanagement and inefficiency through successive years since its inception in 1985. NatCom also acquired the Mtel, the mobile telecoms (GSM) company in the deal.

Announcing the commencement of their services, the CEO of ntel, Mr Kamal Abass said he was,

“….delighted to be writing [to you,] on behalf of the staff and directors of NatCom, with the news that, today, this eighth day of April 2016, we start commercial sales of Voice-over-LTE and high-speed Internet Access services, on our newly commissioned 4G/LTE-Advanced network. Our very earliest customers will be able to buy and use these services in clusters, in Lagos and Abuja, from sales outlets and agents featuring our bright, new brand name: ntel.”

Over the past few weeks ntel has been announcing some packages leading up to the launch last Friday. The most popular was the drive the garner enough customers to the network. Known as reserve your number, the scheme offered customers the freedom to choose a special number starting with the prefix 0804. The program is still on-going and you can reserve your line from the link above.

The voice-over LTE services would be expanded to selected clusters in Port Harcourt in the month of May before being expanded to selected cities in other parts of the country. Providing the services in clusters means that not everybody in the cities of Lagos and Abuja would be able to enjoy what ntel has to offer at first. I guess these selected clusters are chosen based on the concentration of high net worth individuals and firms in an area.

Nitel Headquarters now NATCOM-owned
There is good news for those who took the time to reserve and activate an ntel number in the month of April. For the first 100,000 lucky subscribers, there would be free on-net voice calls for one year. This would be a real bonus for those who were smart enough to register for themselves as well as friends and family. Otherwise, the one year free on-net call would be useless if you don’t know anybody with an ntel number in that 100,000 lines group.

Another bonus for the lucky 100,000: ntel announced the introduction of a special data service for the first three months when they subscribe to the data services called ntel Data Test-Drive. According to Mr Abass,

ntel Data Test-Drive will enable customers to use our 4G/LTE-Advanced network to its full potential, and without having to monitor, or ration, usage. Customers will be offered the choice of paying a flat fee for one day, three days, a week or a month and have the entirety of their data usage, without limit, being inclusive to the price already paid, for their selected validity window.”

A special bundle would also be available to customers. In this special offer, voice and data services are bundled together. This implies that when you buy either the daily, weekly or monthly bundle, you are entitled to make voice calls and utilize the inclusive data bundle in the package according to your chosen plan.

Lets hope these bundles provides unlimited Internet access for the duration of the selected plan. We at Tech Products say welcome to ntel. Here is hoping the services would be very competitive in terms of pricing. As the fifth telecoms company in the country, the most important variable that will make Nigerians switch over to ntel would be cheaper call and data services.


photo credits: google.com; guardian.ng

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