Telkom on Wednesday revealed it was overhauling its network, building more than 3 000 new, street-level fibre distribution cabinets known as multi-service access nodes as it gears up to offer much faster broadband to residential end users and to business customers.
Sallie says the trials will take place in two “geographies” but says Telkom must still determine where these will be. He says the trials will be limited in scope, connecting several hundred homes.
“We will make more details available as appropriate,” he says.
At the same time, Telkom has confirmed it will upgrade the access speeds for copper digital subscriber line (DSL) customers. This includes upgrading customers on slower 384kbit/s and 1Mbit/s lines to faster speeds. Sallie declines to say when this will happen, but hints it will be soon. “Watch this space.”
He adds that Telkom is working to create a new wholesale model that will reduce the cost to Internet service providers of connecting to its broadband network. It is talking to service providers and the Independent Communications Authority of SA about the cost of this access.
The high cost of using Telkom’s IP Connect, which service providers have to use to connect to Telkom’s DSL network, has long been a bone of contention among service providers, which say it has kept the cost of fixed-line broadband artificially high.
Sallie says there should be news on this front in the next few months.