It’s usually extremely hard to get information from TelOne. No one there will speak on record. Especially about the ADSL service the country’s online fixed line operator launched early this year. So you can imagine our delight when we read a speech presented by the Post and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (POTRAZ) director general, Mr. Charles Sibanda recently at POTRAZ’s 10th birthday.
Speaking at the function the DG disclosed that TelOne has connected only 2,600 ADSL customers so far.
We say ‘only’ because we really thought (and sincerely hoped) the figure was much higher than this. In the same speech, Mr. Sibanda discloses that TelOne has a total fixed line subscriber base of 337,881. That’s tens of thousands less than POTRAZ reported last year in February (386,000 subscribers – Slide 7 in the PowerPoint presentation download).
The declining subscribers is an issue for another story, let’s ignore it for now. The point here is that the total fixed line subscribers figure means just 0.8% of all TelOne subscribers are connected to ADSL. It’s way too low than we expected. We expected a couple of tens of thousands at least.
The DG comments in the speech that there are “good prospects for fixed internet expansion”. Being the man on the inside, we hope he can see it clearly enough the expansion will happen at a significant rate in 2012. We all need more reliable and lower priced internet.