Fibre internet is nearly here – What happens next?

Here’s some tips on what happens next with the fibre roll-out in Kensington:

The fibre pole is up outside my house, the line is connected to the pole. What now?

  1. If you’ve got a problem with the way the pole is set up outside your house, send an e-mail to ASAP!
  2. You need to pay Vumatel R1725 to install a little box in your house, called an ONT or a CPE (Customer Premises Equipment). This box links your house to the pole outside and will allow Internet Service Providers (ISP’s) to connect you to the internet using Vumatel’s fibre network.
  3. Vumatel will allow for you to pay off this R1725 over 3 months or 6 months.
  4. All ISP’s charge R999 as an Activation fee, after you have paid Vumatel R1710 to install the CEP box.
  5. The total set-up cost to get connected is R1725 + R999 = R2724
  6. Some ISP’s will waiver the Activation and\or the Installation fee if you take a contract with them.
  7. Here’s the list of ISP’s and packages for Kensington – some ISP’s currently active in Kensington might not be on Vumatel’s website. Contact those ISP’s directly for details on how to connect.
  8. Vumatel has outsourced the ground sales teams via Chameleon Fibre and Fast Fibre. They can sign you up with any ISP, however they seem to be favoring MWEB, Telkom, Vodacom and Home Connect. You still have 40 different ISP’s to choose from, so don’t feel pressured to use an ISP that Chameleon or Fast Fibre is pushing.

Vumatel has over 35 different ISP’s to choose from – How do I decide which one to use?

Knowledge is power – especially when it comes to your money. Here’s some tips on how to pick an ISP:

    1. You can choose to go month-month with an ISP or you can choose a contract:
      • Month-to-month: Gives you the freedom to switch to another ISP with no penalties. Usually means that you have to pay the R999 Activation fee.
      • Contract: If you feel comfortable with the ISP, you could sign a contract. If you find that you’re unhappy with the ISP though, it will mean penalties if you try to cancel the service.
    2. How do the different ISP’s rate?
    3. Are you currently using an ISP for ADSL or wireless that’s also on Vumatel’s network?
      • If you are, and you’re happy with them, then you can just get them to switch you to fibre.
    4. What have you heard about the ISP’s currently in Kensington?
      • Some of the smaller ISP’s that chose to service the Kensington area, might be getting some rave reviews. Ask around on local social media pages like the We Love Kensington page on Facebook.
    5. Will the ISP waiver the Activation fee?
      • Some ISP’s will waiver the R999 activation fee, but will want you to sign a 12-month or 24-month contract. You’ll need to ask them or check on their website.
      • If you look around enough, you might find an ISP that won’t charge you an activation fee and will allow you to connect month-to-month.
    6. You get what you pay for:
      • The cheapest ISP isn’t always the best. Read the reviews on them first!
    7. What am I paying for when I pick an ISP?
      1. You are paying to access the internet using Vumatel’s fibre network.
        • Vumatel provides the network, the ISP provides the connection to the network and the amount of data that you’re allowed to use.
        • If a fibre cable breaks, your ISP needs to get Vumatel to fix it.
      2. You are paying for Data:
        • Uncapped data: Usually means exactly that – you can use as much data as you want. Some ISP’s apply a “Fair usage policy” which means they can slow down your connection if you use too much data.
        • Capped data: You buy a specific amount of data from the ISP every month e.g. 100GB of data
      3. You are paying for a hassle-free billing experience – Read the reviews of the ISP’s!
    8. Shaping and Throttling data:
      • Some ISP’s shape “shape” or “throttle” data. This means that they could slow down certain types of traffic during peak network periods. Shaping reduces the speed of things like downloads only. Throttling reduces the speed of EVERYTHING, not just downloads.
      • Look for an ISP that doesn’t shape or throttle.
    9. What’s the difference between Upload and Download Speed?
      • Download speed is the speed at which you receive data e.g. when downloading files or watching video
      • Upload speed is the speed at which you send data e.g. if uploading large amounts of pictures or playing online games.
  1. What am I even going to do with fibre internet?
    1. Anything that you previously did on ADSL and more!
    2. The biggest benefit of fibre internet is video streaming. The most popular options for streaming in SA are Netflix, Amazon and Showmax (DSTV’s own streaming service)
    3. The combined cost of all three streaming services can still be cheaper than DSTV’s Premium package.
    4. How do I stream video? There’s a lot of different ways to access streaming services:
      • Smart TV’s have apps that are either built-in or can be downloaded
      • Gaming consoles (PS3, PS4, XBOX360 and XBOX ONE) all have apps that can be downloaded from their respective app stores.
      • Android Media boxes – available at Makro, online or from the China Malls – have apps that can be downloaded from the Google Play Store.
        • As a rule of thumb look for an Android Media box that has 2GB of RAM (memory)
          • Make sure you can return it if it doesn’t work the way you expect it to.
          • Some of them come with applications installed that allow pirating of movies and TV shows. This is not legal.
      • Connect a PC Directly to your TV – if you know how.