NetOne opens mobile broadband to prepaid subscribers

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Back in October, NetOne announced to its postpaid (some call them contract) subscribers that its mobile broadband tests, which had been running before that date, had come to an end.  NetOne invited the post paid subscribers to enable internet browsing on their lines and be charged US $40 for unlimited usage a month. Quite the attractive offer when compared to other mobile networks.

Then, we speculated that the reason for unlimited was the lack of a proper billing system to charge subscribers on a usage based regime. We confirmed with our source that this was indeed the case.

Providing internet services to post-paid subscribers only meant the internet was available to just a tiny percentage of their subscribers. Nothing to write home about in the grand scheme of things. More so that getting a post-paid mobile line means having a minimum salary of a thousand dollars:

Not anymore. NetOne recently opened up mobile broadband to all subscribers. The internet is now available to prepaid subscribers too at 10 cents per megabyte. There’s no mention of bundles yet. We suspect the $40 a month option is closed but we’re yet to get confirmation from the NetOne PR people about it.

The 10 cents is the same Telecel currently charges for out-of-bundle data usage. Econet charges 15 cents for an out-of-bundle megabyte.

The big-picture story to take away here this is that 2011 becomes the official year that all 3 GSM mobile networks in Zimbabwe launched mobile broadband services commercially. All three have rolled out a mix of 3G, EDGE and GPRS.

For now, Econet is the undisputed leader in terms of coverage. The company has poured a fortune into infrastructure in the past few years. What is not clear at the moment is which provider is giving its subscribers the fastest and most stable internet experience. We love speed tests and writing about them. Check back next year!


  1. Motmarks

    netone is not serious guys, i called them inquiring about the dongles two weeks ago and was transferred from one extension to another till this lady told me that currently they dont have and she said they only have modems for mahala promotion

    1. Anonymous

      vakaita dzungu

  2. Madziva

    Time to appreciate econet.

  3. Anonymous

    hahaha, NetOne ngavakure pfungwa veduwee!! Their broadband only supports 3G enabled handsets, what about EDGE and GPRS. The 3G enabled base stations are limited, huh this is not good. They must do something, not forgetting the cost which slows down the rate of mobile data pernetration

  4. Guest

    The biggest crime committed against our cyber generation is to associate the term BROADBAND with GPRS and EDGE that’s completely false in Zimbawe we dont have LTE technology yet, I wish I could sue econet for using this terminology simply because they don’t respect what it means to have broadband capability and what functionality broadband should possess, when other network’s now try to emulate econet it’s not only sad it’s appalling yes econet got a good marketing department but they are doing nothing in terms of developing a technology rich society, social netowrking on a handheld is not BROADBAND period it downloading 1 MB over 2 mins is pathetic and getting charged 10c per megabyte is criminal to say the least, thanks to econet as a nation we will always be in the dark ages…  

  5. Bhinikwa

    Hey hey dont blast econet, they provided a service when we had to chance of getting one from anywhere else, they they are expensive due to lack of proper competition. Dont compare them to S.A where theres plenty bandwidth & competition. We are very far from S.A standards. I thank econet for bravery & ingenuity in setting us up from death, with time they ll be forced to be competitive but for now let them collect the monies they laid down at great risk & cost in a very risky economy.

    1. Chiwaxable

      They take us for fools. because we havnt experianced broadband they offer us ordinary 56kbps internet and call it BROADBAND?


    what internet i have a net one line im yet to see the internet they talk about.what are settings havan net ava 

    1. Chief

      apn is internet.netone but the internet is available on 3g phones so your network mode should be switched to umts not dual mode coz they are yet to roll ou edge and gprs.

  7. khulekuka

    Still no bundles to date or am I missing something cause the way my airtime just disappears zvinobhowa

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