There is a guide to broadband products available
in South Africa which was available on MyADSL. This guide rates the various broadband offerings in South Africa using factors such as price, reliability and bandwidth. The best product in South Africa, comparatively speaking, appears to be the Telkom DSL Home 384 at R648 (roughly $105) per month and with a 2 GB cap. What is scary about this is that this product, which apparently costs roughly 46% of the average income in South Africa, is considered good value compared to the others.
What really puts this all in perspective is the guide to some of the international products. The product which is rated the highest is a broadband product available in Japan. It is the Yahoo!BB 45M ADSL (I am guessing this is a 45 MB product) and it costs the equivalent of R230 (roughly $37) per month and there is no usage cap. Even Egypt is ahead of South Africa with its 512 kbps offering priced at the equivalent of R255 per month.
I have to wonder if there is any point signing up for broadband in South Africa for general use. Most of the products are only available if you sign 12 or 24 month contracts and they are grossly overpriced. The alternative is a 56 kbps line which is horribly expensive to use during the day anyway. Of course, at the heart of all of this is Telkom’s frighteningly exorbitant tariff structure and their stubborn insistence on protecting their profits. If ever there was a monopoly worth fighting, this is it.