New cable to slash internet, phone costs

South African consumers can expect huge savings in telephone and internet costs in the next 12 to 18 months thanks to the mid-year launch of the second transatlantic cable, Seacom, telecom experts predict.

“A high-capacity fibre-optic cable stretching across the seafloor from America to Africa promises to slash costs of both internet use as well as calling costs by providing the first true competition to the existing Sat-3 cable that is part-owned and mostly controlled by Telkom,” said Michael Alter, MD of PrimeTel - one of South Africa newest telecoms operators.

Alter said the costs of using the internet are set to fall, followed by calling costs as consumers gravitate to Voice over Internet Protocol.

Some industry experts are talking about figures close to an 80% reduction in costs - which means that South Africa is currently teetering on the brink of a telecommunications revolution.

“As it stands, South Africa really lags behind the rest of the world when it comes to telecommunications competition and costing structures.

“Even compared to other developing countries, such as Chile, South Africa has a long way to go,” said Alter. - I-Net Bridge

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