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-Zimbabwean government-run fixed line operator TelOne has announced the commercial launch of its fibre-optic link to the East African Submarine System (EASSy) international undersea cable via Mozambique. TelOne, which owns a stake in EASSy through the West Indian Ocean Cable Company (WIOCC) consortium, has been allocated initial capacity of 2.48Gbps (16xSTM-1s) on the cable, which it expects to increase to 15Gbps in the next ten years, Techzim reported. TelOne’s 280km terrestrial link to Mozambique is the first phase of the planned national backbone rollout, with another fibre cable being laid on the Harare-Bulawayo-Beitbridge route and an expansion of the existing Harare-Chirundu route also planned. Huawei Technologies of China is TelOne’s main contractor for its recent fibre expansion. The state-backed telco is reportedly the fourth operator to commercially launch high capacity international fibre bandwidth in Zimbabwe, following PowerTel, Econet and Africom all connecting to cable systems at the country’s borders with Botswana, South Africa and Mozambique respectively.

-Telkom has no immediate plans to launch uncapped broadband products based on its asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL) copper network, despite growing competition in this space from rivals like MWeb.Armstrong says fewer than 3% of Telkom’s customers use more than 9GB of data a month. Telkom has no plans for a “big bang” deployment of fibre to the home and to small businesses.This is in spite of plans by a new rival, i3 Africa, which is promising to deliver high-speed fibre access to as many as 2,5m SA homes over the next four to five years. Copper will continue to be the principal way the home and small business markets are served by Telkom broadband, However, there are no plans to extend this infrastructure directly into people’s homes on any sort of scale.

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