10 Mbps ADSL launch details

Telkom’s 4 Mbps ADSL subscribers have been waiting for another speed upgrade since September 2006 when the company’s DSL 1024 subscribers were bumped up to 4 Mbps free of charge.

Telkom has been trialing an 8 Mbps ADSL service for years, but it was not until 2010 that it became public knowledge that the company was also looking into potential 10 Mbps and 12 Mbps offerings.

It is now official that Telkom will launch a 10 Mbps ADSL offerings in mid-August.  This higher speed DSL offering was however on the cards since March/April, but Telkom South Africa MD Pinky Moholi explains that there were a few network issues which had to be ironed out before the service could be launched.

Moholi explained that it took time to roll out Metro-Ethernet to exchanges to ensure that they were equipped for the higher speed ADSL offerings, and that the 2010 World Cup freeze also impacted other network upgrades which were needed to support the new 10 Mbps service.

The mid-August launch date is also tied to the World Cup network freeze.  Moholi explains that she does not want to give a more precise launch date as she wants around a month after the network freeze is lifted to ensure that all the network changes needed to support the 10 Mbps ADSL service are in place.

The new 10 Mbps ADSL offering will initially only be launched in areas where the exchanges have Metro-Ethernet backhaul, and also only in places where there are high ratios of 4 Mbps ADSL subscribers.  Moholi said that the initial launch will not exceed 20,000 lines.

Future rollouts, Moholi noted, will depend on the take-up of the service in areas where it is made available.  “Strong take-up obviously means that we will accelerate the rollout of 10 Mbps ADSL,” Moholi said.

A decision on whether the new 10 Mbps service will be a free upgrade to current 4 Mbps subscribers or a new product has not been decided yet. 

Moholi added that if it is launched as a new product, it is possible that the 4 Mbps service will remain as an existing product with differential pricing.  The Telkom MD further said that consumers should not assume that the new service will be more expensive.

It is understood that, in the event of a separate 10 Mbps ADSL service, that the price may be the same as the current 4 Mbps service and that the 4 Mbps pricing may then be adjusted downwards.  Moholi said that this decision will be made soon.

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10 Mbps ADSL launch details