Hate them or love them! But these guys can not be ignored.
For years they have been saying much but that really did not move me, not until they disrupted the price tag of internet access and remodeled how we access internet at homes and also at our offices.
I have always said access to the internet is a human right, but without laid infrastructure and inhibitive prices, this becomes nothing but a wishful statement that can only be used in rhetoric.
Liquid Telecom has laid more than 12 000km of fibre in Zimbabwe which is the backbone for internet communication, and now through their ISP, sister company ZOL Zimbabwe have started aggressively deploying the service with a mass market strategy which will shake up Zimbabwe and rewrite our connectivity history if they remain in that trajectory.
Three pieces have always been missing in Zimbabwe these are connectivity , affordability and and wider coverage for access to the homes, which even Fibre To The Home, (FTTH) has failed to deliver . All service providers in Zimbabwe, Liquid and ZOL included are yet to successfully deploy the FTTH to larger neighborhoods in Zimbabwe.
Finding readily available internet access across major towns and cities , with a plug and play device around Zimbabwe, has been the greatest missing piece of the puzzle, and it seems ZOL Zimbabwe and Liquid telecom are now putting the pieces together .
Even though there has been intense effort and scramble to deliver the expensive (FTTH) technology in the lower residents, the high density areas have remained disconnected with little attempt by ZOL Zimbabwe in Warren park and TelOne to cover some high density.
This has averagely made fast internet connectivity of over 5mbp/s a mirage for most Zimbabweans who are living below the National Poverty Datum line as it remained fairly too expensive to be deployed to homes for entertainment purpose.
Today the game has changed with 5mbps access from as little as $10, These executives have finally found part of the missing piece to earn them space in the Zimbabwean history of internet movers and shakers.
However they lacked the best strategy on deploying the indoor or outdoor units which are coming in steep, another hindrance to their own innovation as Zimbabweans are looking for access to the internet not their enabling gadgets.
I have always said whether you deliver fast internet via ADSL, Wimax or fiber, the general customers wont really care, all they want is functional, fast, reliable and affordable connectivity, hence the overall cost factor is a major issue still, which they need to relook into.
I would have advised these guys to subsidized their devices, and focus more on maxmising on signing up subscribers and create more turnover over usage rather than recuperating costs of devices from the sales prices.
The Wibroniks is a great initiative, millions will jump on it mainly because its easily and readily available in their home area hence ease of network coverage, but still price of the devices needs a serious relook, before they close the history books.