South Africa’s data prices have been found to be excessively high by the country’s Competition Commission. The short version of the Commission’s announcement, made earlier today, is that mobile service providers MTN and Vodacom have two months to drop pricing to a more appropriate level.
How much, how soon?
Commissioner Tembinkosi Bonakele said that “…there is scope to reduce these prices in the region of 30-50%,” giving the industry 60 days to implement the price drop. Should a drop not appear, the Commission will “…consider a prosecution for excessive pricing.”
Bonakele noted that there have been recent price drops for data in South Africa, but recommended that the big data players arrange “…an agreement with the commission on an immediate and substantial reduction in prices, especially of prepaid bundles.”
The report doesn’t give us any hints as to when (or whether) MTN and Vodacom will drop their data pricing. The ball’s in their court at present. We’d imagine there are some serious meetings taking place right now in boardrooms. There’s probably some yelling. But in suits, so a little softer than you might expect.