Recommend an alternative to Telkom ISP for my ADSL connection

atomcrusher

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For several years now I have used Telkom ISP for my data needs.

My local exchange (Swellendam, WC) only offers a "up to 4 Mbps" ADSL connection, which is "soft-capped" at 20GB.

Telkom responded to one question I had (i.e. when will they upgrade our local exchange to allow >4Mpbs connection) with "we have no plans to upgrade that exchange" :(

I have not been all that unhappy with Telkom as my ISP , but I do seriously dread the occasion when my ADSL goes down (but my landline remains working), and I have to call them to report a fault.

If I am very lucky, I get to speak to a Telkom person who actually responds to my request to perform a Port Reset, which more often than not restores my connection (...but sometimes does not)

I can then go a few days, or even a week, with no ADSL connection, in spite of my frequently re-reporting the fault to Telkom at 10210, and then get put on hold for 30 minutes, or via SMS to 30591 which never seems to elicit any response.

So, I am looking for recommendations of which alternative ISP I should move to. I know there are many, and I can only assume that some ISPs are better that others, i.r.o. customer service, and ease of contacting them.

I accept the fact that the copper infrastructure in the tiny town I live in is probably old, and serviced by equally aged Telkom employees who don't give a toss about customer service. I suspect that the only reason they still work for Telkom is that they are unable to find work elsewhere, or they are waiting for an early retirement package. Certainly the Telkom technicians that have come to my home to test the underground Telkom cables to my home have given me that impression!

I also realise that if I move to an ISP other than Telkom, that those same unmotivated Telkom techies will be dispatched to my home after I report a fault, to check for physical cable faults, when nine times out of ten the problem is with the exchange, and may be able to be fixed with a simple Port Reset.

But I am hoping that a non-Telkom ISP will have some 'clout' with Telkom, which could expedite the fixing of my ADSL downtime problems. ... or am I living in a dream-world?
 

dzeeman

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I am with Afrihost for the awesome support and the fact that I can do almost everything from my client login - change my package, add another one, auto top-up settings, logging tickets or simply send them a SMS and they call me back within the hour.

I do not have any ADSL with them; since there is no ADSL available in my area and therefore I am not sure if they will handle Telkom issues for you. But contact them - they will give you the best advice chop chop.
 

bruce_the_loon

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Jul 6, 2010
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662
Most ISPs can do port resets directly, WebAfrica has even done a reset on my line even though they only have my data package and not the line. If you go with an ISP that has the port management stuff on their client portals, then you can even do a port reset yourself if you can get onto the site via another route. And you get the ADSL line for less than Telkom charges too.
 

MWEBHelp

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For several years now I have used Telkom ISP for my data needs.

My local exchange (Swellendam, WC) only offers a "up to 4 Mbps" ADSL connection, which is "soft-capped" at 20GB.

Telkom responded to one question I had (i.e. when will they upgrade our local exchange to allow >4Mpbs connection) with "we have no plans to upgrade that exchange" :(

I have not been all that unhappy with Telkom as my ISP , but I do seriously dread the occasion when my ADSL goes down (but my landline remains working), and I have to call them to report a fault.

If I am very lucky, I get to speak to a Telkom person who actually responds to my request to perform a Port Reset, which more often than not restores my connection (...but sometimes does not)

I can then go a few days, or even a week, with no ADSL connection, in spite of my frequently re-reporting the fault to Telkom at 10210, and then get put on hold for 30 minutes, or via SMS to 30591 which never seems to elicit any response.

So, I am looking for recommendations of which alternative ISP I should move to. I know there are many, and I can only assume that some ISPs are better that others, i.r.o. customer service, and ease of contacting them.

I accept the fact that the copper infrastructure in the tiny town I live in is probably old, and serviced by equally aged Telkom employees who don't give a toss about customer service. I suspect that the only reason they still work for Telkom is that they are unable to find work elsewhere, or they are waiting for an early retirement package. Certainly the Telkom technicians that have come to my home to test the underground Telkom cables to my home have given me that impression!

I also realise that if I move to an ISP other than Telkom, that those same unmotivated Telkom techies will be dispatched to my home after I report a fault, to check for physical cable faults, when nine times out of ten the problem is with the exchange, and may be able to be fixed with a simple Port Reset.

But I am hoping that a non-Telkom ISP will have some 'clout' with Telkom, which could expedite the fixing of my ADSL downtime problems. ... or am I living in a dream-world?

Hi atomcrusher, we offer 7 day trial account that you can use to see if it meets your needs.

If you are interested then send me a PM with your contact number
 

Grasmuis

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808
Hi atomcrusher, we offer 7 day trial account that you can use to see if it meets your needs.

If you are interested then send me a PM with your contact number

Well the 7 day trial account is not really going to help with a faulty adsl line?
 

Saajid

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Aug 8, 2008
Messages
4,550
If you are only looking to change your ISP for your data package, then things won't be much different. You'll still need to deal with Telkom directly for line issues in most cases. However, if you migrate your ADSL line to an ISP as well as take a data package from them, then you will benefit. The ISP deals with Telkom on your behalf, and can do port resets, log faults, change speed profiles, etc from their side through their backend systems which link up directly to Telkom.

I would choose Afrihost any day of the week, even after all the issues, simply because of all the online functionality you get, which means you can manage your account on your own 95% of the time without needing to interact with a human. They also have an Android (and possibly iOS?) app which is extremely useful. Just don't sign up for an uncapped account. I found ALL uncapped accounts pointless, except for the pricey business uncapped accounts. Go for a 50 / 100 GB or higher capped bundle (i.e. line + data). You'll be saving quite a bit compared to what you're paying Telkom, and getting better performance and customer service.

So ditch both Telkom for ADSL line rental and TelkomInternet for your data package. Unfortunately, until we see LLU or Naked ADSL, you'll still have to pay Telkom for analogue line rental.

Edit: Forgot to mention that even after your migrate your ADSL line away from Telkom to another ISP, I've found that Telkom will still assist through their call center with ADSL line related issues. They've never turned me down so far on the few occasions I skipped dialling Afrihost and dialled Telkom instead. So that's an added benefit. You can go through your regular ISP and save on rental costs, but still use Telkom to sort out line issues if your ISP doesn't come to the party.
 
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MickeyD

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Your best bet is to find the Telkom technical yard in your dorp and going in to have a friendly chat with the operations manager there. I don't think there's a manager there...

Or better still, invite him over for a cup of coffee and chat to him about your experiences. In smaller towns this makes a world of difference.

You need to get the local techies on your side as all your calls have thus far been answered in a call centre that is very far away from you.

And do this before making any changes...
 

atomcrusher

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I greatly appreciate the feedback to my opening post .. many thanks to all respondents!

It has given me a lot to think about. I may have more questions i.r.o. the responses to my OP .. but I first need to digest all the great advice & suggestions given so far.

Thanks again!
 

ponder

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However, if you migrate your ADSL line to an ISP as well as take a data package from them, then you will benefit. The ISP deals with Telkom on your behalf, and can do port resets, log faults, change speed profiles, etc from their side through their backend systems which link up directly to Telkom.

I'm gonna disagree there, you are opening yourself up for more schite.
 

ponder

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Hmm. Not good news. I had thought that moving to a non-Telkom ISP would negate any need of me dealing with Telkom directly i.r.o. ADSL problems

The other issue is isps often also use telkom as a scapegoat when there are issues.
 

atomcrusher

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OK .. after reading all the helpful replies to my opening post, it looks as though I should stay with Telkom as my ISP.

But can you give me details of the best way to report a ADSL fault (as in no data connection, but phone line is OK). I dread trying to call them, and have often been on hold for ages (and I mean a VERY long time) before I get to speak to a human.
 

MickeyD

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OK .. after reading all the helpful replies to my opening post, it looks as though I should stay with Telkom as my ISP.

But can you give me details of the best way to report a ADSL fault (as in no data connection, but phone line is OK). I dread trying to call them, and have often been on hold for ages (and I mean a VERY long time) before I get to speak to a human.

Your main goal is to get a fault ref number.

This is the easiest way: https://secureapp.telkom.co.za/assurance/public/logafault

Once you have the ref number, refer to post #9.
 

Saajid

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I'm gonna disagree there, you are opening yourself up for more schite.

Rubbish. My line has been with Afrihost since they first offered this service. I think it's around 3 years now? I have never regretted it. It's been very useful to me + I save money, and I get access to Afrihost's line management functions, which is the best part of all. And like I said, you can still call Telkom and they will still assist you with line related issues even though your line has been migrated. For me, its a win-win situation. You get the best of both worlds.

In fact it's been so good, a year ago I migrated 2 of our company lines to Afrihost as well, just for the benefit of the line management functions.

But to each his own...
 

Saajid

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That thread has nothing to do with migrating of your line. Fokol. I don't see how it is at all relevant to this thread. The OP in that thread got conned by MWEB, and he was stupid enough to sign a contract. Nevertheless, he could've still phoned Telkom directly to assist with line-related issues. But as can be seen from that thread - he has awesome line stats, and lives quite close to the exchange, but receives the same poor performance when using 2 different ISPs. That can only mean one thing - exchange/DSLAM congestion. Whether your line is directly with Telkom or migrated to an ISP doesn't make an ounce of a difference in this case.
 

Jim West

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Mar 26, 2014
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[...] But can you give me details of the best way to report a ADSL fault (as in no data connection, but phone line is OK). I dread trying to call them, and have often been on hold for ages (and I mean a VERY long time) before I get to speak to a human.

My line is not always stable - I report a fault to Telkom using their website, not the phone.
 

MickeyD

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The OP in that thread got conned by MWEB, and he was stupid enough to sign a contract. Nevertheless, he could've still phoned Telkom directly to assist with line-related issues.
Very, very soon Telkom will be refusing to take his call as he is not the customer, the ISP is...

He has to phone his ISP to sort out the issue on his behalf. He no longer contacts the Telkom Retail call centres, so that cost component is stripped out of the line rental price offered by Telkom Wholesale to the ISP.

That is the reason for the cheaper line rental that he enjoys. The ISP takes over the responsibility of dealing with Telkom Wholesale.
 
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