In October 2018, several ISPs complained to MyBroadband about Vumatel’s fee structure, stating they prefer to work with other fibre network operators.
Vumatel charges new fibre clients a R1,725 installation fee, and an additional R1,000 connection fee to activate a subscriber on its network. When you switch ISPs, the connection fee is triggered again.
While Vumatel is not the only fibre network operator to charge these fees, its prices were some of the highest in the industry.
Vumatel told MyBroadband that its fees help cover its investment in Active Ethernet technology and that a better way to compare the price of fibre-to-the-home providers is to look at the total cost of ownership from a consumer perspective.
To see how much the total cost of ownership is across fibre networks, we looked at the pricing of fibre-to-the-home packages from Cool Ideas.
Cool Ideas was selected as it offers services across a very wide array of infrastructure providers, including Vumatel.
The comparison revealed that even though a fibre infrastructure provider like Vumatel, Octotel, Openserve, and Frogfoot may have an installation fee, ISPs elect to absorb some or all of those costs under certain circumstances.
Since Cool Ideas offers symmetric services on the infrastructure of most fibre network operators, the table below is sorted according to the price of a symmetric 10Mbps services. The price of symmetric 100Mbps packages then acts as the tie-breaker.
While Cool Ideas deciding to absorb some installation costs does have an effect on the overall standings, Vumatel is firmly placed towards the bottom – the more expensive end of the table.
If the sorting method is changed to favour 100Mbps symmetric packages over 10Mbps services, Vumatel’s standing increases slightly.
It should be noted that for the asymmetric packages listed in the table below, only download speeds are considered. Upload speeds may differ depending on the fibre network and location.
Cheaper services also do not necessarily mean slower upload speeds. On Vumatel, a connection with 100Mbps download and 10Mbps upload is R1,119 per month. With fibre from Century City Connect, for example, you can get a 100Mbps connection with 50Mbps upload speeds for R999 per month.
All of the packages listed below include a router, but Cool Ideas makes it clear that this remains its property and must be returned if you cancel your package.
|Total Cost of Ownership – 12 months|
|Cool Ideas||Asymmetric||Symmetric||Once-off Costs|
|Fibre Network||10Mbps D/L||100Mbps D/L||10/10Mbps||100/100Mbps||Installation||Connection|
|Century City Connect||R5,988||R11,988||–||–||Free||Included|
Please note that the following exceptions apply:
- Frogfoot – Asymmetric in Century City.
- FibreSuburb – Southdowns and Kindlewood Estate: installed to garage.
- DFA – Parkview, The Jade, and Westpoint only. R2,000 installation for houses.
- SADV – No install fee for complexes.
- Netstream – Installation fee may be included.
- Century City Connect – Clara Anna Fontein installation R3,999.
- Mitsol – 10/5 service connection fee is R1,500.