Telkom ADSL soft cap tested

Telkom did away with a hard cap on its capped ADSL accounts from February 2013, and replaced it with a soft cap which allows for unlimited browsing.

“Telkom is upgrading its Internet network on 1 February 2013, and this change means that capped users will now get access to all websites even after they reach their monthly usage limit,” Telkom explained.

“Instead of hitting a cap, customers will now merely have their speed slowed down and some of their international activity shaped.”

This raises the question as to how Telkom’s capped ADSL service performs after a subscriber exceeds the monthly usage limit. The answer is: surprisingly well.

MyBroadband performed a few web based speed-tests, large file downloads, and latency tests, and the performance was acceptable considering that it was essentially an uncapped, throttled service.

The tests were performed on a 4Mbps ADSL line, and both local and international download speeds ranged between 0.3Mbps and 0.4Mbps. Upload speeds seemed to be unaffected by the throttling.

Telkom ADSL South African speed test after cap was reached
Telkom ADSL South African speed test after cap was reached
Telkom ADSL international speed test after cap was reached
Telkom ADSL international speed test after cap was reached

Web serving was good, albeit much slower than what a 4Mbps ADSL user would be accustomed to.

Surprisingly there did not seem to be any significant shaping on large file downloads using BitTorrent services. The peer-to-peer download speeds were similar to those indicated by web-based speed tests.

BitTorrent download
BitTorrent download

Latency was not significantly affected by the throttled service, and provided results in line with what standard ADSL accounts produce.

Telkom ADSL latency when cap was exceeded
Telkom ADSL latency when cap was exceeded

From the download and upload tests it looks like users can expect a downlink speed of around 384kbps and an unchanged uplink speed.

It should be noted that these tests were only performed on only one 4Mbps line. Other Telkom Internet subscribers have already reported a different experience from the performance listed above.

Telkom Internet 1 Mbps Line Speed after being SoftCapped

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Telkom ADSL soft cap tested