I'm in the heart of the Eastern Cape, East London. Sure people will say Port Elizabeth is bigger or the Bhisho is the capital but East London, part of the Buffalo City Metro, is the real heart. Cry Freedom was based on the activities of East London newspaper editor, Donald Woods and his friendship with Steve Biko. East London is also nearer to former President Nelson Mandela's Qunu home.
But do you think you would be able to find a decent signal anywhere in this place? 3G is almost non-existent as your smartphone is reduced to some stuttering, blithering fool. I had to recharge twice a day as my phone gasped for signal. I know being a Blackberry doesn't make a real smartphone, more like a phone that passes but will eventually fail at life. Anyway, with the tragic event of my dog passing and this incredible heat I never quite managed to set up my ADSL.
Firstly as much as I love my FNB, their FNB Connect service was awful. The guy that tried to help me, on a badly connected voicecall was pretty darn useless. He sent me the wrong password and the modem was never really set up. Right up until I phone my other ISP - Afrihost. I think I waited longer to be helped than I did on the line as he gave me my password, modem connected and I was online.
I have seen 384 lines. They were never as slow as this. And although I get 3 GBs a month on this line which my mom will use on her new netbook. And then I thought. Nowhere in South Africa is the Internet connection consistent in terms of connection, speed and uptime. And it is great to have products like uncapped, but my own home in JHB can't get an ADSL line because Telkom says they don't have any infrastructure but they can put a phone line in. That is another criminal practice of the criminal outfit known as Telkom. Forcing customers to take a landline with their ADSL line is the sort of thing keeping telephone and connectivity limited in SA. Firstly Telkom must admit, the quality of its lines are show a committment to be completely and utterly dedicated to being kak. Not surprising, it is state owned.
Often our services are priced similarly to other overseas destinations, but can that be justified when the quality of service is this poor? I wish we could offer a solution. I wish I had some way of using my Internet from FNB (I get about 1GB free) or just have some form of Internet connection that I could rely on.
So please dear Internet gods, I am not being ungrateful for all the lovely bandwidth I enjoy but can I just ask we improve the connection? This is like buying the finest car in the world and then finding out someone stuck an Uno 1100 engine in it. The people shall revolt, because we can't connect to online.