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Bharti Airtel Expands Virtual SIM Card Trial into Commercial Service

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Bharti Airtel is to expand a test it carried out in Madagascar that used a "virtual SIM card" to the rest of its operations in Africa.

The first deployment under the new contract, with the service provider, Movirtu is now live in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Movirtu's Virtual SIM platform allows mobile operators to provide services to users who cannot afford to purchase a personal handset while also allowing subscribers to keep multiple numbers on same handset.

With a Virtual SIM linked to their own personal mobile number, users can temporarily activate the Virtual SIM on a friend's handset or shared village phone in order to make calls to send text messages.

Willie Ellis, Director of Products and Innovation at Airtel Group commented: "Working with Movirtu in Madagascar proved to us that there is a strong appetite amongst people who currently do not own a mobile phone for a low-cost, secure service that keeps them connected. Having proven the business case, we now plan to roll out Movirtu Share throughout our subsidiaries in Africa. And because Movirtu's underlying Virtual SIM technology makes it easy for us to dynamically attach/detach numbers to different handsets, we have the option of launching additional services in the future."

Movirtu's Virtual SIM Platform is based on standard mobile network technology and subscribers are managed in the same way as any other with regards to customer care, provisioning and billing.

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Tags: bharti airtel  movirtu  sim card  Madagascar  Congo, The Democratic Republic Of The