South Africa’s Petabytes of broadband traffic

South African broadband subscriber numbers continue to grow, mainly because of the strong uptake of mobile broadband services from Vodacom and MTN.

This growth means the overall data traffic on broadband providers’ networks is also growing rapidly.  Both mobile operators have recently reported hundreds of terabytes (TB) of data traffic on their network, with ADSL networks carrying far more data than that.

MTN South Africa CTO Sameer Dave recently said that their network currently carries around 220 TB of data traffic on its network, and this figure is expected to grow to between 250 TB and 260 TB during the World Cup. 

Vodacom’s data traffic is more than double that of MTN.  According to Vodacom CTO Andries Delport Vodacom South Africa is currently carrying between 500 TB and 600 TB of data traffic on its network, with strong future growth predicted.

It is common knowledge that many international mobile operators’ networks are buckling under the growth of data usage on their networks, but both Dave and Delport are confident that their networks are robust enough to cope with growing demand.

Traffic on ADSL networks however far exceeds that of the mobile operators despite having far fewer subscribers on their networks. 

While recent statistics are not publicly available, Internet Solutions’ Broadband General Manager Royden Dall revealed in late 2009 that they had exceeded 1 Petabyte (1 000 Terabytes) of monthly DSL traffic on their network.

The traffic on the country’s ADSL networks is also expected to increase significantly on the back of a slew of affordable uncapped ADSL services entering the market over the last few months. 

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South Africa’s Petabytes of broadband traffic