South African users can look forward to dramatic cutsin bandwidth connectivity pricing in the next few months.
According to Ajay Pandey, CEO of Neotel, the excitement of a shifting telecommunications landscape experienced by the local market in the past 12 months will not compare to the next 12-18 months as the new undersea Seacom cable comes into operation around July this year.
"We will see a new age in telecommunications in South Africa as it becomes extremely competitively priced like never before, not only for local businesses and consumers but also we will witness the dawning of SA becoming really competitive in global terms for the first time, activating the much needed second digital economy," says Pandey.
He believes the activation of the Seacom cable will ensure a flood of extra bandwidth for for local economy and drive down prices to an internationally-comparable level with faster and more affordable connectivity and data speeds spurring local business in the run up to the 2010 World Cup.
Pandey says the price drop will also inject impetus into the last quarter of the calendar year and help position local and global companies prepare for the massive service provision and business growth predicted to be required for 2010.
In addition, the country could come back into the competitive global outsourcing market, further injecting much needed revenue into South Africa.
"Local business players will definitely need to graduate to a higher level of service and team with telecoms service providers to build capacity and enjoy managed data services and variable bandwidth pricing. This process will spawn a host of innovative new products and services, moving the market away from expensive fixed pricing and 'me too' products," he says.
"The days of 'one size fits all' communication service offerings will quickly pass as the next evolution of telecoms comes into play, hopefully spurring new business for South Africa at a time when we need it most."
Pandey adds that, alongside the strong growth of innovative telecom products and services, we will also see an increase of service provider partnerships geared to help facilitate the building and expansion of much needed local fibre infrastructure without duplication, as recently occurred between Neotel and MTN.