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IS, Incredible, offer uncapped ADSL

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Internet Solutions (IS) and Incredible Connection have partnered to offer consumers and small businesses end-to-end ADSL solutions, available via signup in-store or from the www.Connection.co.za website.

Known as Connection DSL powered by IS Ignite, the offering enables Incredible Connection customers to walk into a store, buy a router, signup for uncapped Internet and walk out connected. Throughout the process, customers are assisted and advised by expert consultants.

‚”The adoption of DSL in South Africa is growing rapidly as Telkom continues to drop pricing and upgrade existing infrastructure,‚” comments Herman Jansen Van Rensburg, GM of IS Ignite. ‚”The continued growth of mobile and smart devices in the home, combined with the cost and unpredictable nature of mobile data, as well as the rise in popularity of online and connected gaming are key drivers of DSL adoption. Consumers are looking for a high speed, low cost means to remain connected.‚”

Jansen Van Rensburg also explains that the partnership is of strategic importance as it significantly expands the company’s distribution network into the retail space. ‚”With over 70 Incredible Connection stores nationwide we have been able to reach more clients, and make the service more accessible to the public.‚”

Two uncapped product variants are available initially one designed for home use, while the other targets small businesses. There are also different line speeds available, with 1, 2, 4 and 10Mbps options.

‚”The home offering poses aggressive market pricing, while the business product includes a monthly allocation of 300MB of Wi-Fi data from AlwaysOn to enable greater mobility.‚”

The solution is available on a month-to-month basis, so customers are not obliged to enter into a long-term contract. ‚”Additionally, we are offering a limited numbers launch promotion where the first 1000 signups receive special pricing of R99.00 per month, which will make this the most affordable 2Mbps DSL offering in the country,‚” says Jansen Van Rensburg.

The Connection DSL Home Uncapped package offers four line speed options, which are bundled with DSL, mail, and fax-to-email.

1Mbps: R164.00

2Mbps: R194.00 (or R99.00 for the first 1000 customers)

4Mbps: R260.00

10Mbps: R499.00

The Connection DSL Business Uncapped package includes DSL, mail, fax-to-email, and Wi-Fi connectivity through all AlwaysOn hotspots.

1Mbps: R254.00

2Mbps: R354.00

4Mbps: R594.00

10Mbps: R894.00

To find out more about this offering, and stay informed of future connectivity product options that will become available through Incredible Connection, visit www.connection.co.za

* Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com

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Telcos want one face

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The investments that telecommunications service providers are making in reshaping their online properties into customer-centric portals reflects the growing maturity of self-service and Internet uptake in the industry, says KEVIN MELTZER of Consology.

Many telcos around the world are overhauling their websites to offer customers more holistic portals that give them a single point of entry into the organisation.

They are doing so because they recognise that service will be a key point of differentiation for their businesses in a market that is becoming increasingly competitive. They have also realised that they have a major opportunity to shift customers away from expensive contact centres towards low-cost electronic channels.

In the past, most telecommunications operators ran multiple sites across multiple domains and subdomains. These web-based properties were built around the way that telcos structured their own businesses rather than around the needs of the customer. But we are now seeing the leading operators take a more user-centric approach to the way that they design their web and mobile sites.

This coincides with a change in the industry from slicing customers into numerous segments and then serving them across a range of functional and product areas. For example, many operators split customers into prepaid and postpaid segments or voice and data users, distinctions that are becoming less meaningful in a world of technology convergence. They now want to present a single face to the customer rather than servicing the subscriber through silos.

These changes are starting to percolate through to operators’ customer service and sales strategies. Telcos are starting to pull together disparate products and services that once resided across multiple sites into customer service portals.

These sites put a wide range of information at the subscriber’s fingertips, he adds. Increasingly, for example, subscribers can log directly into their accounts from the operator’s homepage and then access a wealth of services and information. This marks an evolution from the fractured and inconsistent customer experience of the past.

Leading operators are even thinking about how their Self-Service platforms should be integrated with social media strategies to allow customers to pay their electronic bills or top up airtime with a single click from within a social network.

Whereas Self-Service portals on telco sites were once purely about account management functions, they increasingly offer far richer functionality. In addition to allowing subscribers to pay their bills and check their account information, they are also increasingly becoming the first stop for service and commerce.

Operators have started to recognise that splintering their e-commerce, service and account management functions simply makes no sense. Customers want to be able to do everything through one interface rather than needing to visit two or three Web sites, or eventually possibly needing to phone a call centre or visit a store for certain transactions.

Integrated and easy to use online customer service channels will be central for telco operators who want to be competitive in the markets of tomorrow. They form an advantage in an industry where it will be customer relationships rather than cost or service that drive loyalty and purchasing decisions.

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Talk for less with MWEB Talk

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Today, MWEB announced its consumer VoIP package called MWEB Talk, which allows users to make free network calls and get discounted rates made to landlines and mobile phones.

MWEB, today launched its new Voice over IP (VoIP) offering to South African consumers. The service, MWEB Talk, will offer users’ free on network calls to fellow MWEB Talk users’ and cheap calls to landline and mobile phone numbers. This follows the success and demand of the ISP’s existing VoIP products in recent months.

‚”We have seen a noticeable transformation in users’ Internet behaviour with consumers wanting services that complement their ADSL connectivity solution. We have seen phenomenal growth and by the end of the year will deliver over 100 million minutes on our VoIP platform,‚” says Carolyn Holgate, General Manager of MWEB Connect, the ISP’s Consumer and Small Office/ Home Office Division.

MWEB has made significant investments in its infrastructure and VoIP has been prioritised on its network to ensure performance and stability of the MWEB Talk service for both businesses and consumers.

‚”In addition to the high quality of the service, MWEB Talk is also simple to set-up and users’ should experience a significant reduction in their telephone bills. By implementing a VoIP service consumers and small businesses can cut their monthly telecommunication bills by up to 55% to landline and mobile numbers,‚” says Holgate.

With no subscription fee, existing MWEB customers can log into their MWEB account, register for the service and download the application for PC and Mac as well as mobile applications that turn an iPhone, Android, and Nokia smartphone into a VoIP phone. Customers will also be able to purchase a Desktop VoIP Handset for R99 which will be HD voice ready and will support multi-extensions.

‚”We believe that VoIP is the future of telephony in South Africa and we are extremely excited to see the consumer market shift into the VoIP space,‚” concludes Holgate.

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