Home » Business » Netone Reincarnates the Call Box

NetOne has reinvented the old “callbox”. This is a public telephone system that used to be operated by the then Post and Telecommunications Corporation, through the introduction of their own network based system called the Chatter Box.

According to NetOne’s marketing director Mrs Memory Ndoro the chatter box uses a Netone SIM card and all a client needs to do is insert their card in the machine and then follow instructions on the screen.

“The Chatter box, works exactly like your cell phone except that it will be wired in a fixed position. All the normal functionality can be accessed like making and receiving phone calls, sending or receiving phone calls, retrieving voice mails, top up or even requesting call backs,” she said.

While the rationale behind introduction of such a service is not yet very clear, given that most people own handsets, it appears the new product will be popular with NetOne subscribers.

The service is likely to be very popular in rural areas or growth points. Indications are that the service will also be handy to those subscribers whose phone battery would have run out and they need to make an urgent call.

It might also be handy in towns for those who do not have handsets at all. In this case NetOne may need to push lots of these gadgets around town, residential areas and shopping centres in the suburbs.

Probably with our very unreliable electricity supply, the phones may be very relevant.

The chatter boxes are available at NetOne’s head office at Kopje Plaza and Mbare post office. The mobile phone service company is, however, aiming to roll out the chatter boxes to their One World shops, Zimpost shops, growth points, boarding schools, hospitals and clinics.

Apart from the chatter boxes, NetOne has also slashed their tariffs to 14 cents per minute across all networks from 23 cents, being their first ever move to aggressive campaign outside their network boundaries.

Famed for their dollar per day promotion, NetOne has managed to retain their subscribers and have attracted some new clients pushing their subscriber base to 2,7 million. Mrs Ndoro said that the promotion will run for the next 3 months.

“This is our way of showing our appreciation for our subscribers for their unwavering support,” said Mrs Ndoro.

NetOne is also continuing with their intra call benefits for their subscribers and the promotional bundle services.

“We are already expanding service coverage for our clients and are currently installing new base stations for wider national coverage” she added.

NetOne’s across all network tariff however faces heavy competition from the Telecel who are already offering an average of 13 cents on the Telecel go and 10 minutes for a dollar, Econet was also offering almost the same before they aborted the promotion promptly.

The 14 cents per minute rates also apply to their public phones, the chatterbox as they aim towards bringing convenience to their subscribers.

Source : The Herald

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