Technologies, such as VoIP, Fibre and LTE are changing the way South African’s communicate. In terms of fixed-line connectivity, Fibre is considered the latest and greatest. It uses Fibre optic cables which means it’s very fast and much more stable. And because it doesn’t use traditional copper cables it’s also theft and weather-proof. LTE can also have similar benefits depending on a number of factors.
Large volumes of businesses and homeowners are changing from connectivity mediums such as ADSL and moving to more affordable LTE solutions or opting for the reliability of Fibre.
In May 2019, Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko was quoted as saying that Telkom recently developed a roadmap concerning the proactive migration of customers to newer infrastructure. Over the next 5 years, they plan on doing away with copper entirely. They also announced that their existing ADSL clients are being moved from the Copper ADSL service to a Fibre or a Wireless solution, at no additional cost. Very exciting. But is it as easy to do as it seems on the surface? And how will this affect you if you already have a VoIP solution? What will happen in the future if you would like to move to another voice provider?
Moving from ADSL to LTE
If you are planning to move from ADSL to LTE here are some important points to consider:
- Ensure that your signal strength is good enough to handle both your voice and data requirements.
- Congestion on the network and the total number of users that are active within the tower range can seriously impact internet speed. This, in turn, can negatively impact your VoIP call quality.
- Due to the reason above, it’s often not recommended to opt for an LTE solution in high-density areas.
- Ensure that the package you chose is right for your needs.
- Don’t sign into a long term contract. There are many LTE providers out there. It’s best to test the strength and speed before committing to one provider.
- Ask your neighbours if they are using LTE. Also, ask them about their experience in terms of the service they have.
- See if you can organise a trial modem to test out the speed and signal strength.
- If the deal you are being offered seems too good to be true; it probably is. Be aware of fake LTE resellers as was highlighted in a recent Mybroadband article.
- Most importantly, if your home or business line is linked to your ADSL line, ensure that you port the number to a VoIP provider. You might lose the number(s) when you cancel the ADSL service.
Moving from ADSL to Fibre
If you are planning to move from ADSL to Fibre, you need to be aware of the following:
- First and foremost, does the area you live or work in have Fibre infrastructure already installed?
- If the answer is yes; are there multiple Internet Service Providers you can choose from or are you restricted to the one that was responsible for laying the Fibre cable?
- Speak to your neighbours or businesses within your area and find out if they are using Fibre and if so, ask them about their experience.
- Remember when choosing a Fibre provider you don’t have to change your VoIP provider. It might seem more convenient in the short term. But it’s often a better idea to ensure that you have a specialist providing you with VoIP services and not just one that offers a VoIP add-on service with your new Fibre connection.
- If you are an existing Telkom ADSL client and Telkom has approached you to upgrade to Fibre, be very careful as it’s becoming increasingly difficult for Telkom Fibre clients to cancel their Fibre services. This came to light in a recent article that was published on the 11th of September 2019 in MyBroadband. Read the article here.
- Switch Telecom enables clients to port their existing landline number(s) onto our network in order to take advantage of low-cost VoIP solutions. This is becoming increasingly difficult to do for clients that have Telkom Fibre services. Telkom currently does not cater for easy “re-numbering” of your Fibre line. This means that odds are high that it might take weeks, if not months to port your number. Something simple has now become extremely complicated and frustrating.
Ask your VoIP Provider
In summary, we would recommend that you investigate the availability of internet services in your area before you agree to move or upgrade your existing service.
Switch Telecom has a range of qualified and experienced Resellers in most areas throughout South Africa. Please let us know if you need to speak to a Reseller in your area about possible connectivity or network requirements. Contact us on 087 550 0000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.