If you’ve ever had to choose a broadband solution you know how complex it can be. Between fixed, wireless and mobile solutions, shaped and unshaped, capped and uncapped, choosing the right solution for your needs can be a veritable minefield. A new South African website launching on Monday hopes to making picking the right provider and package that much easier.
Clinton Bemont, an academic from the University of Kwazulu-Natal, is one of the three people behind WhichBroadband, a site that will make it easy for consumers to compare all of South Africa’s various broadband offerings.
The website will detail for consumers how each broadband package in the market is priced, whether its contract-based or month-to-month, and what restrictions apply to each. Consumers will also be able to search for broadband solutions that match particular criteria, like price range, connection speed and whether or not there are any initial costs for hardware.
Bemont says WhichBroadband started out as a passion project seven years ago. “It was born out of our own personal need to optimise everything and to create a database of what broadband packages would be best for us and people we knew,” he says. “WhichBroadband started out as an Excel spreadsheet.”
While the site won’t be monetised at first, Bemont says he hopes advertisers will come on board in due course. “We would like to make money out of it eventually, but initially we just want to put it out there. We hope people think it’s as cool as we do and that there’s a need for it.”
The broadband landscape is an ever-changing one, meaning WhichBroadband will have to keep the site updated with new offers or price changes from operators and other service providers.
“We’re hoping to be able to pull data from some service providers’ websites directly,” Bemont explains. “But until then we will be doing it manually and updating the website accordingly.”
Bemont says while the WhichBroadband interface is ready to go the database is being finalised, hence the delayed launch. The site has been designed to be responsive, meaning it will work on mobile devices as well as desktops and laptops.
WhichBroadband goes live on 11 August 2014.