Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates


Econet connects to SEACOM undersea fibre cable

Men pulling optic fibre at sea shoreEconet just announced some 3 milestones today. The first and most significant is that Econet has established a direct connection to the SEACOM undersea optic fibre cable in Durban and is ready to connect customers once given the green light by the regulatory authorities.

Econet explains that it has secured dedicated capacity on the SEACOM cable to cut out third party networks between itself and SEACOM. This will ensure end to end infrastructure reliability that Econet has been striving for in the construction of Zimbabwe’s largest optic fibre network yet.

Econet also disclosed to us that it anticipates to be given the green light by the regulators soon and is eager to get going with the high speed broadband service rollout.

This announcement comes hot on the heels of news this morning that state owned fixed telephone network operator, TelOne, has connected to the EASSy undersea fibre cable through Mozambique. Some coincidence hey.

Also announced in the release is that that Econet mobile subscribers have hit the 5 million mark. That’s almost half the entire population of Zimbabwe! Just 8 months ago in April, that number stood at 4 million. Econet Wireless CEO, Mr Douglas Mboweni says the “increase in the subscriber base has been made possible by the ongoing network expansion.”

On the Econet Broadband front Econet says the service has been received tremendously well, with no less than 400,000 subscribers now signed up for the 3 internet products on offer.

Like you, we hope that the optic fibre connection will see the Econet Broadband prices revised downwards significantly. Econet’s mobile internet is currently pegged at a price so dear subscribers have been calling for a revision downwards. Econet’s response has been that the “cost of any product or service will inevitably be determined by the level of investment a service provider puts into it” and that it has “to pay for back up satellite links”.

Will the latest development provide the much needed price reduction subscribers have been yearning for? Please share your opinions in the comments section below.


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30 thoughts on “Econet connects to SEACOM undersea fibre cable

  1. So it’s only today they tell us they have been lying about giving us “Broadband” connected to “fiber optic network cable”.

    Econet Broadband! Really!!!

  2. don’t remember them claiming the broadband was from THEIR fibre. could be PowerTel Fibre, Econet or TelOne earth station.

  3. Itai is right. At the Econet Broadband launch the commercial director from Econet actually said they were using “their” optic fibre cables going into RSA and Botswana. But we all knew that was not correct.

  4. I am using the econet internet on my mobile and m not happy… Its been almost a week and its dead slow, most of the time the links are not available! Took me 3 tries to open this link already!

  5. Lets see..analysts said price should go down by 80 percent..we will see if that will happen, knowing Zimbos it will probably go up rather than down.

  6. Hey guys…Lets just appreciate what Econet has achieved. If we stay with a negative attitude to a provider who worked flat out to provide internet to all people and everywhere then its not too nice. I think the reason why other providers have failed to achieve this is because of the cost….I believe the issue of prices will be arrested gradually not instantly………..

  7. Great job to Econet for working hard to get broadband internet to Zimbabwe. Will they reduce the prices I wonder, this might just be their excuse for not reducing prices now or the near future “Econet’s response has been that the “cost of any product or service will inevitably be determined by the level of investment a service provider puts into it” and that it has “to pay for back up satellite links”.”

  8. Why is it that consumers in Zimbabwe are so gullible? Do we just believe we don’t deserve the best? Econet is not doing us a favor by providing all these new services. They are trying to saturate the market before big foreign guns step in like Vodacom. It’s just that the difference they are making is so marked because of the passivity and foolishness of their direct competitors. So we should not thank them for anything. They should thank us for the support the market has given them. But the way they do it is to offer basic telecommunications services at exclusively exorbitant prices. They are talking about how the cost of the investment is high yet everyone else in the region is experiencing similar costs. Market research is crucial in all business ventures. Had they done their homework they would have realised that charging triple or quadruple what the rest of the world is charging, will not result in sustainable profits in the long term, but will serve as a catalyst for resentment. And when the aforementioned big guns step in they stand to lose. So congratulations for turning into a heartless, soulless entity

  9. I agree with Lee Masuka. Lets appreciate the great work done by ECONET, and stop joining the bandwaggon of complainers. All that complainers do is watch and complain.

  10. Good carlo…You know what…lets all know the country we are living in….Econet has had a relatively cheap $25, 3G earlier though not fast enough…People complained. Now its fast but they dont appreciate….What we say is appreciate the good and criticise the the bad, with an understanding of what caused them. Now they got fibre but we don’t appreciate…I believe this post is talking about the joined fibre but people react badly and start being negative…

  11. Yesterday I saw an advert on SABC 1 of CellC internet (mobile broadband). It cost R 149.00 for 2GB of data.
    Simple mathematics will tell you that at $10 for 50mb econet broadband means that if were were to get 2GB of data it would probably cost you 40 times more in terms of econet pricing that is, $4000 for 2GB of data. Can you imagine this? Could econet charge $4000USD for 2GB?
    Heck they won’t.
    Can they charge $2000 for 1GB of data? No they won’t.
    That’s why 1GB of data is going for about $100USD.

    But then that’s exactly why we discovered that econet broadband is expensive. Charging $10 for 50mb is very very expensive. Trust me, it is very expensive.

    All we are saying is, give us the best service but don’t scare us away with high prices.

  12. Except, it isn’t fast is it? Neither is the 4G. Forget the ridiculous prices I just want a connection that works. Bad service + high prices = angry consumers. I think that’s fair enough.

  13. I am EXCITED at the news, now waiting for the performance – bandwidth and price wise! Only then can we comment from an informed viewpoint.

  14. we will keep yelling for price reduction. Its seems the only thing broad thing
    about econet broadband is the price.

  15. Can somebody in the know answer me this: If the econet (or telone) fibre optic cable passes right in front of my doorstep (house, school, business, or remote growth point), is it possible to “tap” into this fibre or is it like living under a 330kV ZESA line without electricity (so near and yet so far)?

  16. Here’s a good example of why ICT education is important and ministers Chamisa and Coltart need to liaise and come up with a contemporary curricula.

    To anwser Marek’s question: no you can not just tap into a fibre running across your front pouch. There is considerable middle-ware (hardware & sofwtare) that need to sit between a fibre line and your connection point.

  17. Thank you for your response.

    I think that you could have simply answered the question without the unnecessary innuendos. It is hardly a general knowledge question and I dont think it would be covered in any contemporary cirricula.

  18. some fools rush to complain and never celebrate the merits. Come on Zimbos. The price will go down once the investro (econet) has recouped some of the funds dedicated to it. We compare prices with UK, SA? Have u ever nchecked to see how much Vodacom’s mobile broadband was when it launched in 2004? Did u know that the taxes in Zim’s telecomms industry are the highest in the world? Look at facts, research before you show us how shallow you are. Well done Econet, we know the prices will come down soon…and yes, even faster speeds…

  19. Some fools rush so support Econet at every turn, there is nothing wrong when our people can see through Econet’s daylight robbery….It is not right to overcharge your customers, Econet has been doing this ever since they started their business. It is a typical African strategy… invest $0 and make $10 out of that… in Econet’s case sell “broadband” at the cost of BROADBAND and use the pure profits to build the Real broadband link. In other places they call this Fraud and I do wonder why some Zimbabweans do not see this….
    For those enlightened like me it is high time we start a pressure group to push for realistic pricing and real broadband instead of allowing these crooks to use technologial terms to steal from us…. Econet has been built on short changing us for a long time now… and the consumer’s voice needs to be heard….


    mobile broadband for 100M is slightly above $10in S.A, and in Zim its $20 for the 100M. I beg to differ with someone saying 40 times… ko imi vanhu munopedza nguva yenyu muchipopotera econet, ko asingadi akarega zvakaipei… vana Malaika mave kutotuka vamwe kuti mafools… ii zvanyanya.. dei maitaurawo yemapassports nezvimwe zviri kudhuriswa muZimbabwe nehurumende…. i’m a very hopeful person and i believe things will be well with us soon..

  21. I think jamesM answer to Marek was inappropriate as not everyone is IT literate and is not a must. If i ask a doctor what happens to my heart if i run too fast, can the doctor refer me back to school or ask the Gvt to introduce medicine in class? Come on guys, questions asked mean the person needs an answer not be ridiculed because they asked a question.

  22. I agree that Econet is number one in high prices. Trying to recover the cost of upgrades and installations of BTS or fibre in 2seconds does not justify the exorbitant charges. $98(R686)for 1GB(MTN R289/1GB – come on Econet, even mina i will feel the fork in my backside if i sign up for that deal!! 🙁

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