We use Mweb (now iWayAfrica) for our primary internet connection at the office. I have 3 mobile broadband dongles from Africom, Telecel and Econet, which I use in order of the most affordable and usable at any given time. Now the problem with Econet sites is that, unless I’m using the Econet dongle, I cannot open them.
Right now for example, I’m on the Mweb connection and can’t open the Econet websites www.econet.co.zw , comms.econetmobile.co.zw and www.econetbroadband.co.zw. These sites won’t open on the Telecel and Africom connections either. A friend using a ZOL internet connection tells me the three websites won’t open for her.
We’ve told Econet business development employees and they say nothing is wrong because, well, it opens perfectly from their end! We know it does.
Tracing the route the internet route of the three websites to find where they are hosted, you can see the trace ends at Econet servers in Zimbabwe. We’re figuring this is something Econet can do something about.
It’s been like this for some months now so not sure if it’s because nobody at Econet cares to actually take a look or they’re finding it difficult to fix. Whatever the reason, it needs to be fixed. The websites serve subscribers with information they can’t get anywhere else. They’re also a gateway to subscriber mailboxes, and that must count for some prompt action in fixing it. Unless ofcourse Econet deliberately won’t let you access the mail services if you’re on a rival connection.
A great alternative if Econet is finding this non-core business a pain would be just hosting the websites at a local company that specializes in hosting. We know at least one that might be able to handle hosting a site for a business the size of Econet.
And it’s not just Econet with these avoidable misconfigurations; Africom won’t fix the resolution of the afri-com.com name no matter how many times I complain. You can only get to the Africom website by typing in the full www.afri-com.com (with the www). The PowerTel website too has been having lots of issues lately; today for example it’s returning the nasty errors below about a Joomla session crashing.
Surely, these problems are not that hard to fix.
We (and I’m sure Econet, Africom and PowerTel) would love to know your thoughts about this. What would be the best strategy for these companies? Just host their websites at dedicated hosting companies? Employ dedicated web teams? Or maybe just care more about their internet platforms?
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