Following Telkom’s reveal last week and the subsequent launch of their VDSL offerings, many people were scratching their head about where they could sign up and if they could even get VDSL to their house. Well, Web Africa has a list of planned areas for upgrades as well as a nifty online checker to see if you’re eligible for the service (compared to Telkom’s ADSL checker, it actually works). Most of these are also areas where Telkom techies laying cable have been spotted, as well as eagle-eyed forumites on MyBroadband picking out the new MSANs being built.
For those of you interested, the VDSL checker can be found here: Web Africa VDSL checker. If you’re still asking questions, VDSL is a huge speed boost over regular ADSL that uses a fibre optic infrastructure to reduce the latency that typically hamstrings your connection going from your phone line to the local exchange to the internet exchange. It enables download speeds up to four times faster than Telkom’s fastest ADSL line, with upload speeds typically being two to five times faster. Its a big step forward to what is really a world-class internet service and given the span of Telkom’s planned service, its really going to be something once it’s more widely available. While you still use a copper telephone line to connect up to the MSAN, its fibre all the way from there on.
This extra-long list is merely a guideline Telkom’s said to be following, as all these areas are reportedly only in the planning stages for now. However, MSANs have been spotted in Port Elizabeth and Fourways in Johannesburg is already up and running. Its only a matter of time before the other areas see their MSANs light up and chances are that rapid VDSL adoption could actually reduce Telkom’s reliance on copper telephone wires and possibly eradicate ADSL services by, say, 2018. If Schoenmakerskop can get VDSL, soon pretty much anyone will be able to as well.