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South African Operators Step up Fibre Commitments

Residential subscribers within major South African cities such as Cape Town will soon be enjoying FTTH services according to plans aired by operator Neotel. Neotel already has around 15,000km of fibre laid within nine high-density metropolitan areas enabling mainly business customers to utilise FTTC-based services.

“Our approach eliminates any perceived exclusivity attached to having high-quality telecommunications services and customer service – we've made sure any company, large or small, within the metro can connect to our network,” said a Neotel spokesperson.  “Fibre to the kerb is available from Neotel immediately and it is simply a matter of time before we can offer the same type of service to the home.”

The operator - which alongside the partially state-owned South African incumbent Telkom dominates most of the African telco market - has also been instrumental in commissioning a new 1.2Tbps undersea fibre-optic cable providing bandwidth connectivity between South Africa, Madagascar, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, India and Europe by June 2009.

Radically improving communication infrastructures is a hot topic in South Africa, as the nation gears up for hosting the 2010 FIFA World Cup.  Many stakeholders have been debating the relative merits of deploying wireless/WiMAX versus FTTH, though increasingly the long-term sentiment favours fibre-based approaches.

Read more at www.itweb.co.za or here


*These comments do not necessarily reflect the views of the FTTH Council Europe.