iBurst: Fix your broadband

There is no doubt that iBurst is one of the worse broadband providers out there. Look at the over 500 complaints in the last 12 months on HelloPeter or HellBurst.

While most users complain about incorrect debit orders and the accounts department being up to sh#t, I pay via EFT and avoid surprise debits exceeding several thousand Rand a month. Yes, choosing iBurst was my choice — Telkom was not capable installing a copper line (after 5 months), Neotel did not launch and 3G is too expensive, but the incorrect advertising (broadband) and the (lacking) level of service is consistently delivered by iBurst.

While I originally used to get 500-700kbps (with omni-directional antenna and 100% signal), over the last 2 weeks my download speed looks like this (note that this is in KiloBits per second and not KB):

and a Speedtest reveals this:

Great ping-time, but iBurst completely lacks the backhaul capacity to provide any level of service. Incident was logged with them 19th September with the promise to have an engineer call within 1 hour. Phoned again today and was told that “everyone” is working on this.

On the MyAdsl forum you will notice posts like this one, that one, or this one, or that other one, or this one. By now you should get the hint, that not everything is as rosy as we are led to believe.

What does it mean to me: Tried to download since Thursday a 150MB patch for PS3 Burnout Paradise. Sofar the download was interrupted 12 times (4x on Thurs, 5x Friday, 3x Sat). This has cost me over 1GB of my bandwidth and iBurst is refusing to fix or compensate —- bad business practices.

Although Telkom could not get their act together in January, I have re-applied and hope that in a few months I will be on ADSL. PM me if you would like to purchase the iBurst Desktop modem (not that I have not warned you…)

Update 1: It has been now 3 days since I started notice the bad connectivity. Between 18/09 and 21/09 I wasted already 2869MB on trying to redownload a 120MB file. This is using up the additional R599,00 bundle I bought – iBurst will unlikely provide compensation for this.

Update 2: The call-centre now tells me that my local setup is wrong – iBurst see screenshots below (100% signal strength, no frame-errors, but your magic link-speed is 293kbps):

Update 3: Close to a week later, several phone-calls and emails, iBurst has now decided that the problem is on my side. So how is it possible that I can have great speed-tests against iBurst servers, but any international download suffers from lack of speed (download this morning of a 64MB Synology Firmware was going at a hot 5KB/sec). I will get my site-visit now on 26th – a week after reporting the incident the first time. Will be surprised to see what the resolution will be.

From some people I heard that iBurst does not have sufficient international back-haul capacity and all their towers are oversubscribed, this would then explain an international SpeedTest: