Dial-up Internet access is the most expensive way a small company could connect and they should consider booting it out completely.
This is one of the conclusions drawn in Arthur Goldstuck's new book, "The Mobile Office", which reveals the true cost of connecting a small office or a mobile worker to the Internet – and sounds the death knell for dial-up access.
A detailed analysis of the cost of Internet access in South Africa shows that dial-up access is the most expensive form of Internet connectivity in South Africa. The belief that dial-up is cheap because it tends to carry the lowest monthly subscription of all forms of Internet subscription is shown to be a myth. While the upfront subscription is usually far cheaper, once the access is actually used, it quickly becomes more expensive.
World Wide Worx's research into mobile technologies in South Africa, under the Mobility project sponsored by First National Bank, provided the initial impetus for the book.
FNB Mobile and Transaction Solutions CEO, Len Pienaar, says FNB has been sponsoring the Mobility research project for the past three years and is proud to be the only financial institution supporting this initiative. "The book offers a strong component of financial common sense, which we support wholeheartedly," he says.
Among the findings revealed in the book, it has emerges that:
* A business using dial-up would have to spend 18 minutes per working day on dial-up to justify moving to a basic ADSL service;
* For a residential user who is also online weekends, daily usage that would justify ADSL is even lower at 16 minutes;
* For 3G for small businesses, the dial-up time that justifies moving over comes down to 12 minutes; and
* For iBurst, it is half a minute.
"Our Internet and SME research always indicated that dial-up was a dying technology among small businesses, but the scale of the savings offered by mobile broadband that came out of our new analysis was a shock," says Goldstuck
"The cost model that we provide in the book shows that dial-up access is obsolete both in terms of utility and in terms of cost. It is unsustainable, and broadband must now become the default for Internet access in South Africa," says Goldstuck.