Open access fibre network operator (FNO) Frogfoot is piloting Frogfoot RISE, a prepaid, uncapped internet product designed to bring fibre connectivity to more South Africans.
In a statement, the FNO says Frogfoot RISE will be rolled out across 40 000 to 45 000 connected homes over the next three to six months, with areas in Vrygrond and Phillipi in the Western Cape earmarked for the initial phases.
It notes all areas fall outside Frogfoot’s current footprint and are in higher-density, underserved areas.
“Frogfoot Networks’ ambition is to bring access to uncapped connectivity to as many South Africans as possible,” says David Coleman, Frogfoot chief product officer.
“Of course, this will have to be accomplished through a mix of technologies, but it makes more sense to provide the communities that border our footprint with fibre-based wireless connectivity. Frogfoot RISE will provide them with a more stable and cost-effective internet experience, with uncapped access for less than R10 per day.”
According to the company, retail packages will start from a 10/5Mbps voucher for seven days at R69, to a 50/25Mbps voucher valid for 30 days, costing R499.
It explains that unlike traditional fibre installations, Frogfoot RISE simplifies access for residents by installing an optical network terminal (ONT) that includes built-in WiFi capabilities.
This means there is no extra fibre installation required by the internet service provider (ISP), while residents don’t need an additional router in order to access the internet, it points out.
“Local partners play a pivotal role in building the fibre network, installing ONTs, conducting activations and recharge campaigns, as well as network maintenance – bringing longer-term benefits to the communities they live in,” says Coleman.
“Engagement has been going on for some time now in the pilot areas, and working closely with the community enables us to build these virtual highways in a way that local communities feel part of it.”
Coleman points out that Frogfoot has a schools programme, where registered schools within its fibre footprint were given a 1Gbps line with the ISP of their choice, and this will continue with schools in the Frogfoot RISE coverage area, bringing further benefits to these communities.
“Frogfoot Networks has been focusing on maximising our investments to date, including evaluating various options for geographic expansion of our network, paired with the right offering aimed at improving fibre penetration across more communities. More areas located within close proximity to our fibre backbone with similar characteristics to the pilot areas will be considered beyond the pilot phase,” says Coleman.