A few years ago I transitioned from owning a manufacturing/retailing business to developing an internet based business. My reasons were many, but a large motivator was that I was sick and tired of black incompetence and the omnipresence of BEE. My maxim became, "My next business will be based on my intellectual output only." Without getting into the details, let's just say I am very familiar with the necessity of having good internet access.
Essentially, if you are a small business, you have come to rely on internet access. It is a business necessity, and your options have essentially been Telkom, 3G mobile or iBurst, with the last two being slower, less reliable and more expensive. Now anybody who lives in a first world country, like me, will attest that contacting SA via Skype, to 3G or iBurst users is fraught with problems. So Telkom became the preferred service provider. However in a monopolistic environment the sole provider of the premier service is under no pressure to upgrade infra-structure, so it comes as no surprise that South Africa's "premier" service has now become as unreliable as Eskom. To read the article posted by IOL Technology click here.
As an aside, those of you that make use of Skype or another VOIP provider, be careful the service is not free. I know that essentially computer to computer communications do not attract a charge, there is the issue of bandwidth consumption. If you are a first world resident, you probably get 60Gigs of traffic, or thereabouts, with your monthly low fee of about R150.00. For South Africans you are probably haemorrhaging about R400.00 for 1-3Gigs. If you are using video and voice, you will very quickly consume your bandwidth and will then incur a charge. So be careful.