By Lulutho Skeyi

Indwe is a small town in the Chris Hani District Municipality near Dordrecht in the Eastern Cape province. Indwe was founded in 1986 and for as long as the small town has existed, large areas of this town have never ever had network coverage… well not until now!

Slow cellphone network connections are a struggle to most people at times even in big cities but in a small town like Indwe, the struggle to network services has been extreme as the nearest cell phone tower that broadcasts network was miles away which made it difficult for cellphone users to receive network services. Residents in the Mzamomhle location which is one of the small locations in Indwe; used to walk up to a nearby mountain or any area with a higher altitude, just so that they can simply send a text message or call someone.

DCN installers, an installation company arrived at Indwe to install cellphone towers to improve networking in Indwe. DCN installers are an installation company, electrical contractors who deal with civil and telecommunication needs. The DCN installation company was hired by MTN to install the towers. The site where the towers are built is Lukhanyo High School, and the towers run using the schools electricity, the school is being paid for hosting the tower.

The telecommunications company installed a cellular-enabled mobile device tower where 3 antennas which broadcasts network and placed electronic communications equipment on the cell tower to create adjacent cells in a cellular network. These raised cellphone towers support antennas and one or more transmitters, digital signal processors and control electronics.

The cellphone tower was installed by five (5) Radio Frequency Technicians, namely; Loyiso Duda, Sikelela Bam, Avela Labani, Lwando Manci and Lerato Kouveld.

Loyiso Duda, one of the Radio Frequency Technicians mentioned that the capital possibly used for equipment and Labour was roughly three to four million rands (R3m-R4m). The equipment used was supplied by Ericsson which is a networking and telecommunications company. The tower was built by Atlas Towers. The tower has aircraft warners and backup electrical power sources runned by batteries for when load-shedding occurs. The tower supports up to LTE 3G and cellphone network coverage has improved immensely in Indwe.

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