Fixed line and mobile broadband prices have plummeted over the last decade, with consumers getting higher speeds and more data at a fraction of the cost than what they paid in 2003.
In 2003 a basic 512 Kbps ADSL service cost residential customers R966.72 per month (R67.72 for analogue line rental, R680 for ADSL access and R219 for a 3GB data bundle).
Fast forward ten years, and South Africans can get a 1Mbps ADSL service with a 5GB soft cap for a total monthly cost of R367.37.
Mobile broadband prices plummeted even more than ADSL over the last ten years.
In 2003 a 10MB data bundle from Vodacom cost R200 (hence R20 per MB). Today users can buy a 2GB data bundle from the same company for R99 (5c per MB).
The increased value for money in the broadband market was made possible by continued technology advances (providing more bandwidth at lower prices) and increased competition in the market.
Broadband versus other products
When compared with products such as petrol and food, broadband stands out as having bucked the trend of price increases.
The following table provides an overview of the price changes of a few products over the last 10 years.
|ADSL 512kbps/1Mbps (total cost)||R967||R367||- 62%|
|Vodacom mobile broadband|
|Out of bundle (per MB)||R45||R2||- 96%|
|MyMeg 10||R200||R9||- 95%|
|DStv Premium bouquet||R360||R625||+ 74%|
|95-Octane Unleaded (Reef)||R4.22||R13.08||+ 210%|
|Cost per kWh (average)||R0.21||R0.61||+ 190%|
The following chart provides an overview of the price charges of the different products over the last 10 years.