Why MWEB created fibre accounts with limited upload speeds

MWEB recently launched new fibre packages on the Openserve network, offering discounted prices to users.

It was interesting to note that the upload speeds of the accounts were not what tech-savvy readers would have expected.

Fibre networks offer ISPs the following options for consumer lines: symmetrical and asymmetrical.

  • Symmetrical fibre gives you the same download and upload speeds. Example: 100/100 Mbps
  • Asymmetrical fibre gives you different download and upload speeds. Example: 100/50 Mbps

On Openserve, ISPs typically offer clients asymmetrical fibre packages where the upload speed is half that of the download speed. Example: 100Mbps download and 50Mbps upload.

New MWEB packages

With MWEB’s new accounts, however, clients on Openserve are offered upload speeds multiple times slower than the download speeds.

As seen in the table below, for example, the 100Mbps package comes with a 20Mbps upload speed – not the typical 50Mbps upload speed.

MWEB Openserve Fibre
Download / Upload Price p/m
10Mbps / 2Mbps R399
20Mbps / 4Mbps R699
40Mbps / 10Mbps R849
100Mbps / 20Mbps R999

More affordable prices

An MWEB representative on the MyBroadband Forum stated that the new fibre products were created to cater for the needs of a variety of clients – all at a reasonable price.

“Not all clients require a high upload, as they just need the connection to download or stream. We still offer clients that want a higher upload, a package at a higher price.”

For most users, this reasoning is sound – as uploads make up a small percentage of their Internet traffic.

A quick survey of Internet users we spoke to said they used the large majority of their bandwidth for downloads.

One tech-savvy user who pulled his fibre usage figures from his ISP said that on a recent Saturday of high usage, his data was split as follows:

  • Download – 46GB
  • Upload – 0.44GB

A “slower” upload speed of 20Mbps rather than 50Mbps on a 100Mbps Openserve line would therefore not have impacted him – as his uploads were so small.

For professionals and creators, however, uploads play a much more important role.

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Why MWEB created fibre accounts with limited upload speeds