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Fri Dec 09 01:59:13 SAST 2016

Fibre connection well worth considering

Bruce Gorton | 2016-03-08 13:47:40.0

Image by: Supplied

Over the past thirty years the Internet has changed the way the world works – and we have developed a greater and greater need for high speeds.

Services offering fibre optic Internet have risen to try and satisfy this demand, which was part of why MWeb recently hosted a house dedicated to showcasing fibre optics in the home.

The live streaming taps were cute, though I had doubts about having Minecraft creepers in the home.

So here is the deal: getting connected via fibre has a lot going for it.

Part of this need for speed is because the world is moving away from traditional media sources. In the US for example, people are increasingly cancelling their cable subscriptions because they can get the same media with less advertising interruptions online.

If you want to stream movies to your 4K Internet TV without buffering, you’re going to need a pretty good connection.

A 10mps line going through MWeb with 200 gigabytes of data costs about R1,099 per month.

Cybersmart’s 10mps ADSL package costs about R873 per month and for that you only get 150 gigabytes of data.

And there isn’t quite the same market for stolen fibre optic cable as there is for copper. However you will have to pay a separate connection fee. Vumatel charges R1,710 rand for it, though you can shop around.

So cost wise fibre is fairly competitive.

There are however pitfalls. The first is that you are essentially dealing with two companies – the Internet Service Provider (ISP), and whoever you picked to install the actual infrastructure.

Because fibre is relatively new with a lot of companies entering the market, the infrastructure isn’t fully standardised – meaning each company providing that infrastructure does it in a slightly different way, which can cause connection issues with the ISP.

Sure you are no longer tied to Telkom, but you should probably research how nicely your ISP is going to play with the people actually installing the cables.

The second is that with this being new wiring, if you live in a complex or a block of flats a lot of the time you’re going to need the whole complex to agree to one company installing it for everyone.

Anybody who has dealt with a body corporate knows how painful it can be to get a whole bunch of people to agree to something like that, even if it is a good idea.

That said, if you can get it fibre is well worth considering for your home network.

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