Fibre is by far the most preferred traditional fixed connection in many South African homes which are fibre ready and this is largely due to the reliability of download and upload speeds with uncapped offerings. The truth however, is that we all are struggling with access and LTE and LTE-advanced technologies are becoming more widely available and can potentially cater for virtually any budget which has given fibre service providers great alternatives.
In South Africa, it is estimated that approximately nine out of every ten households in South Africa are now relying on cellular phones as their means of communication. This is extremely expensive and has lead to the #datamustfall movement. Following the hard lockdown of last year and the resultant financial pressures it placed on people, fixed LTE is a great alternative to fibre. If you are looking for some great options for your home, school or office, you can check out our coverage map here.
The growth of LTE
And while fibre is still being rolled out in many communities, fixed LTE coverage throughout South Africa is rapidly growing with competitors like Rain who have been extremely aggressive on their rollout. Unlike fibre which requires trenches to be dug and CPE units to be installed at homes, a person can get a SIM and fixed LTE router within a week of placing an order. Its plug-and-play functionality ensures families and small business to get up and running quickly.
As many South Africans have been impacted negatively due to the Covid-19 pandemic and more so from the recent unrest this has negatively affected them from an income perspective which will invariably lead to tightening their budget to spend on “essential items” has become a reality. Basic connectivity is now seen as an essential item as part of our daily lives and therefore giving consumers choice based on their affordability coupled with flexible monthly options will be a key factor in the consumer buying process.
We are expecting the next wave of infections to hit in the months to come which makes access to reliable connectivity crucial to remain productive especially while working from home.
The Pros of Fixed LTE include:
- Brings High-Speed Internet to Underserved Areas
- Local Providers with Better Customer Service
- Installation is Quick and Easy
- It’s Reliable
- It’s Fast
- It’s Flexible
- It Has Straight-Forward Pricing
- No contracts as it works month to month
- Some service providers allow you to use your phone to connect
- Its cheaper than traditional data in South Africa, with prices form around R5gb
The Cons of Fixed Wireless Internet:
- It Has Line of Sight Limitations
- It’s more expensive than fibre
- Some service providers like MTN specify a router that must be used
As Fibre is limited in various areas, Fixed LTE is the simplest alternative and can be used as a backup once your fibre line goes down.