Safaricom has been on the receiving end of complaints for a while now after a good number of their Fibre to the Home customers experienced issues with the once benchmarking home internet solution. When Safaricom Home Fibre was launched back in October 2017, the service was described as the best in the industry by early adopters (myself being one of them). But a year later, after numerous customers had been boarded, the once admirable internet speeds were overtaken by complaints of unreliability.
A quick browse through social media shows numerous tweets and Facebook comments calling out Safaricom for their degrading service with accusations of the degradation being intentional with the aim of pushing subscribers to pay for the more expensive packages.
The company did try to debunk this myth, having personally gotten an explanation from one of Safaricom’s engineers explaining that the issue at hand was caused by bandwidth hogging gadgets that would leave other devices connected to a particular router without a stable connection. The biggest culprits being IDM internet downloader, Windows updates and any kind of software update or download for that matter.
As much as this explanation may have some meat to it, it still did not explain how this issue started over a year after the service launched. To counter the problem, Safaricom tells Gadgets Africa that they deployed an AI solution which will assist in assigning bandwidth to the individual devices connected to a router at a particular time.
According to the company, this should help deal with “rogue” devices that want to hog all the bandwidth leaving everything else to hanging out to dry. Safaricom says that the smart solution was deployed on January 10th and explains that customers should be experiencing better services now.
Mother Green also talked about their imminent rollout of Voice over LTE (VoLTE) technology that was first pioneered in the country by Faiba 4G but failed to receive any significant traction. Safaricom says that they have completed all the VoLTE development and tests and all that is left is deployment.
The company also mentioned that at launch, no dates were given, Samsung Galaxy flagship phones (S8 and newer), a few Huawei devices as well as a number of TECNO and Infinix devices would support the telco’s VoLTE. There was no mention of pricing but our assumption is that the VoLTE service will consume data as opposed to airtime. Unfortunately, iPhone users will have to wait longer than everyone else before their devices get Safaricom VoLTE support due to complications between the telco and Apple.
One question remains, are you excited about VoLTE or is it just another gimmick that we’ll never use?