Vodacom stepped up investment in the roll-out of high-speed data network in the first quarter as demand for internet connectivity grew during the lockdown even as the mobile phone company subscribed to a cautious 2020 outlook.

In a quarterly update that also provides a glimpse into how the industry has fared during the lockdown, Vodacom said it had increased spending by R500m in the three months to the end of June, bringing total expenditure to R2.7bn in its efforts to meet a surge in demand for internet data from locked-down consumers and business clients.

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