I have always wanted to post a review of Expresso’s EVDO modem, CliQ. I have gotten a lot of great messages from people I suggested it to and I keep suggesting it to anyone looking at getting a USB modem.
What is CliQ?
CliQ is the new the new mobile broadband service Ghana’s sole CDMA operator, Expresso.
How To Get A CliQ Modem
CliQ can be purchased from any Expresso Shop or authorised reseller at GHC60 with a valid i.d card or just call the Expresso Sales Team on 028 921 0055 and they will deliver it to your home or office. No jokes. The modem comes pre-loaded with 4.5GB of data. That is 500MB more than Airtel’s and 2GB more than MTN’s which sell at GHC 60. You get 1.5GB more data than Vodafone & Tigo’s USB modems which sell at GHC 55.
What’s In The Box
The installation of the CliQ software is simple. Just plug the modem in the software pops up. All you have to do is just a click, click and click. I have realised that some of the earlier modems came with Windows only software. If you have or purchase a CliQ modem and can’t get to work with your Mac, contact the folks at Expresso for the Mac OS version.
In my speedtest.net test of CliQ, I averaged 1mb/s for download speed and 0.56mb/s for uploads. That isn’t bad at all. I downloaded a couple of files at 230kb/s. I haven’t tried any uploads yet but the download speed is convincing enough.
CliQ offers the best reload options for a mobile broadband service.
CliQ (pay) as You Go | GH¢ 0.05p
CliQ a Day | GH¢ 2 | 100MB
CliQ GH¢ 15 | 30 days | 1GB
CliQ Regular | GH¢ 60 | 30 days | 4.5GB
CliQ Premium | GH¢ 80 | 30days | 6.5GB
CliQ Gold | GH¢ 110 | 30days | 10GB
Please note that CliQ doesn’t have an unlimited bundle. That would have been sweet.
Voice & SMS Support
CliQ supports voice calls and sms. In the CliQ software, voices calls can be made and text messages sent and received.
Since the Expresso and CliQ websites are still under construction, (at the time of writing), I am unable to say what the coverage reach of CliQ is. I learnt from an Expresso staff that Accra and Tema have been covered. I guess so is Kumasi, Sunyani, Sekondi-Takoradi and everywhere there is Expresso coverage. You might not get EVDO signals in your neighbourhood since Expresso hasn’t completed the upgrade of its network from CDMA 1x.
Aside the data cap, I think this is a great product. I have recommended it to a couple of people and there is nothing like buyers remorse with CliQ. Expresso has poor costumer service but I can boldly say it is the best mobile broadband modem on the Ghanaian market.
Kasapa Telecom is rebranding to Expresso Telecom, two years after Hutchison Whampoa Group, its previous owners sold its interest to Expresso Telecom Limited, the Dubai Investment of Sudan’s Sudatel Telecom Group.
This is the second time Kasapa is re-branding. Kasapa, which was established in 1996 as Celltel re-branded to Kasapa in 2003. Kasapa currently has an estimated 400,000 subscribers, the least of all five operating mobile telecom operators in Ghana. Expresso has done an upgrade of Kasapa’s CDMA network to EVDO. This is expected to increase the network quality and bring faster data access to costumers.
Expresso has started running radio, tv and print media ads of its data service CliQ. CliQ offers EVDO USB modems at attractive and competitive rates. A CliQ EVDO USB modems sells at GHC 60 with 4.5GB data. Same price as MTN & Zain’s 3G modems but with 2GB and 500MB more data respectively.
Expresso Telecom already operates in Guinea, Mauritania, Senegal and Nigeria. Checking from the offers available to Expresso subscribers in Senegal, I expect Expresso Ghana to be a vibrant player in the a mobile telecommunication market which is seeing keen competition. Kasapa had the lowest call rate of 0.0925p/minute within network till Vodafone & Zain (Airtel Ghana) slashed their call rates to 8p/minute across all networks. I would want to see how Expresso will react to this.
I owned a Kasapa phone back in 2008. I gave it up because the service was terrible. I was getting charged for checking my voicemail, something which was advertised as free. In my opinion, the limiting factor to Kasapa’s growth is it being a CDMA network. There are a few CDMA handsets available here. The Ghanaian consumer wants to be able change SIMs and switch phones whenever. I just hope Expresso does their homework well and put out more classy CDMA phone on the market. I wouldn’t minding trying Kasapa again if I could get a Palm Pre or Pixi or an Android phone.
There is a lot of excitement in Ghana’s telecom sector now; Zain is also re-branding to Bharti Airtel, Glo mobile & the Glo-1 cable are going live soon, the MainOne cable is live and a price war is looming.
Welcome Expresso! Let’s see how you can ‘transform peoples lives to help unlock their potential through advances in a digital world’.
Evolution of Expresso Ghana