Internet body disputes price announcements
INTERNETBy BiztechAfrica - Aug. 18, 2012, 3:32 p.m.
By John Churu, Gaborone, Botswana
The Botswana internet Services Provider’s Association (BISPA) which is the only industry body in the country that looks after the collective interests of the internet community, has rejected the recent pronouncement by the government that there has been a price benefit to Internet Service Providers.
“We feel, however, compelled to respond to recent press announcements that there has been a price benefit to ISPs of 59% as a result of WACS capacity. We find these statements are factually incorrect and unfortunate in the way they created false expectations in the market,” said a BISPA statement.
According to the BISPA: “BTC announced a reduction in the wholesale price of bandwidth by up to 59%. Unfortunately none of the announced products has been reduced in price by this much. The majority ISPs who will be purchasing on a 3 year basis will, at best, make a saving of 30-46%.”
It added: “As BTC is aware, the wholesale price of is only one component of the cost of providing internet services, they should therefore have been sensitive to this fact and clearly identified that the percentage quoted do not translate into percentage discount on the retail prices.”
The organisation said a good example of a cost calculation must be factored in is the continued devaluation of the Botswana Pula. Since BTC passes the foreign exchange losses to ISPS every quarter, and since consumers do not expect to pay higher prices to absorb theses costs, price reductions such as these help in buffering this cost. “Therefore, understanding the above explanation, BISPA anticipates that the actual retail price reduction will be the 10% to 15% range.”
BISPA added that there has been no announcement of reduction in the wholesale ADSL bandwidth prices from BTC. The wholesale ADSL price is the price that BTC charges to ISPs who resell their ADSL service and therefore one would expect, since BTC’s input costs have been lowered, there should be some percentage discount which they would pass on to ISPs, which would then allow ISPs to reduce the prices on ADSL.
“ADSL subscriber should note, and as an example, on the lowest priced product, that the internet portions or their ISP charges only contributes perhaps 46% of their overall bill. 54% is actually what they pay directly to BTC and again, this price has not been reduced,” complained the local internet body.
Accordingly, the new pricing will only be available to ISPs who sign a new contract with terms that many ISPs find irresponsible to contract under. Even though BTC’s announcement stated that the changes would be effective from 1st of August 2012, their letter made it clear that pricing would not be available until at least several weeks later.
“Further delays in receiving these prices are also anticipated as each ISP and collectively as BISPA we try to negotiate the terms of the contract to be more in line with acceptable practice,” explained BISPA.
MORE INTERNET NEWS
DRC builds 34 000 km fibre optic cable networkThe Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is currently building a 34 000 km fibre optic cable network that will connect the whole country to the Muanda landing station. Read More
Teraco connecting to 54 countriesTeraco reports that its Africa Cloud Exchange, launched two years ago, now provides access to 54 African countries. Read More
Cheki.com Ghana shows auto dealers the benefits of the webOnline specialists Cheki.com.gh have hosted a special session for auto traders to motivate them to promote their cars online. Read More
MTN Cameroon transfers WACS landing station to stateMTN Cameroon has transferred ownership of the WACS submarine fibre optic cable landing station at Limbe to the State of Cameroon. Read More
DEG launches Easy School Find in GhanaDigital Education Group (DEG), an academic consulting firm specialising in classroom technology, has launched a new search engine for schools called “Easy School Find”. Read More
Kenya Defence Forces Twitter account hackedThe Twitter account of the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) has been infiltrated by hacking group dubbed #Anonymous. Read More
Malawi to run 1st online recruitment siteMalawi has launched an online recruitment site, ‘Myjobo.com’, providing free job ads and job searching. Read More
SEACOM plans continent-wide initiatives for its Foundation DayOn 23 July 2014, Pan-African telecom enabler SEACOM will celebrate the fifth anniversary of its commercial launch, by donating time and providing support to communities that need assistance across the countries where it does business. Read More
NAPAfrica celebrates new peak at 15GbpsNAPAfrica, describing itself as Africa’s most successful neutral peering exchange, has reached a record-breaking peak of 15Gbps. Read More
FEATURED STORYWidening ICT skills gap: Cause for concern
Nigeria's FDI gains could be eroded by the widening gap in indigenous skilled ICT manpower, writes Kokumo Goodie.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHKenya rolls out e-extension to improve agriculture
In a bid to curb the overwhelmed number of agricultural extension officers in Kenya, the ministry of agriculture is embracing technology with their introduction of E-Extension services, which are aimed at reaching out to over 7 million farmers annually.