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  1. SA BB Fan's Avatar
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    Default Beginning of the end for Blackberry in South Africa

    Although BB has seen recent tough times around the world, it is very popular in South Africa due to the BIS; although even in 2011, data charges are incredibly high in South Africa, so for the price sensitive, BIS is a definite winner.

    However, one of the major networks has recently decided to CAP BIS usage to 100Mb per month!!! 100mb is nothing considering email, navigation and random browsing. At best, we never get more than 128kbps download speeds on that. Abusers who download gigs at a time I understand, but to place such a ridiculously low threshold cap on everyone??? Does the rest of the world have the same issues? Or is this another effort for corrupt 'fat cats' in South Africa to line their pockets?

    Google: Vodacom Epic Fail Blackberry caps

    This should be brought to the attention of everyone. I want to stay with Blackberry but this would cause many users in South Africa to jump ship.
    Could this be the death of Blackberry in South Africa? I hope not!
  2. Buzz_Dengue's Avatar
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    ... are you part of the 5% ???

    Slowing Down Blackberry ‘Abuse’
  3. SRR500's Avatar
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    I agree that that sounds like a redicously low cap but where are people going to jump ship to? Android and iPhone will blow through that cap like it isn't even there.

    After re-reading your post, I have a question. Does the cap apply ONLY to BlackBerry? Do other smartphone platforms have a higher or no cap?

    If that is the case, perhaps the government is trying to tax BB out of the country in favor of something easier to monitor. (just a wild guess)

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    bquinney, Jake Storm and nliang like this.
  4. SA BB Fan's Avatar
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    Just for the record, I do not abuse the BB bis. I use email, bbm, whatsapp, the occasional app, garmin navigation and random browsing. I dont watch youtube or download (through BIS?). Even then, with random google searches etc, I can easily use 5-10megs a day, in a month that = 250megs a month roughly?

    I stand corrected. The news articled mentioned limiting speeds (they only 56kbps-128kpbs) and not hard capping after 100 megs of usage a month.

    Still think this rather unfair and the biggest reason I choose a BB over other more-sophisticated phones. We pay R59 a month for unlimited BIS - or we used to.

    Appreciate the opinions and feedback
  5. belfastdispatcher's Avatar
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    The only thing affected would be video streaming (youtube) so I wouldn't worry at all, use away.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
  6. southlander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SA BB Fan View Post
    Just for the record, I do not abuse the BB bis. I use email, bbm, whatsapp, the occasional app, garmin navigation and random browsing.
    Ooops. Sorry misread that completely.
  7. JayLiebenberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by belfastdispatcher View Post
    The only thing affected would be video streaming (youtube) so I wouldn't worry at all, use away.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    Actually...no.

    I'm a South African BB user and according to the latest stats, an "abuser".
    All data that is downloaded and uploaded through BIS, included pics, soundclips, files etc. Whether through BBM or Whatsapp or even email will count towards this "cap".
    Any internet browsing, facebook, tweets etc also count towards this "cap".

    As soon you have reached your "cap" your handset is limited to 2G.
    This includes any and all applications that requires 3G to operate optimally such as SatNav.

    It has been revealed that the SP Vodacom has been aware of the issues for a few months and that a solution had to be found.
    They have decided to not reveal this to the public but instead decided to continue to offer the Blackberry and BIS to an all too naive consumer.

    In all of this we have not heard from RIM at all.
    From the online comments, the current BB users are looking at flocking to other service providers but the rumour is that it will only be a short time before they adopt similar "caps".
    RIM stands to lose a large number of consumers.
  8. Reed McLay's Avatar
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    I can offer some perspective on the data cap issues.

    Three years ago, the Canadian carriers offered BlackBerry with 1.5Mb monthly data caps. Additional data was billed at $10 per Mb.

    In practice, this meant using your BlackBerry beyond basic text email could become very expensive.

    Then, the iPhone appeared on the scene. The carrier offered an introductory special deal of 6Gb (6,000 Mb) in the basic package. Additional data was billed at $0.10 per Mb.

    CrackBerry Kevin rallied the troops and helped convince the carrier that BlackBerry users deserved a similar deal. That is when I went BlackBerry with a 6Gb data plan. It was awesome, there was no way I could ever go over cap and be charged above my basic plan.

    In practice, my actual data use rarely exceeds 10 Mb in a month. True, I seldom stream video or music and the majority of my email continues to arrive in non-HTML format. The bulk of that use results from frequent BlackBerry App updates.

    Today, that 6Gb plan is a collectors item, I could auction it for a small fortune. The typical data plan is now 500 Mb, which I consider more then adequate for BlackBerry service.
  9. belfastdispatcher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JayLiebenberg View Post
    Actually...no.

    I'm a South African BB user and according to the latest stats, an "abuser".
    All data that is downloaded and uploaded through BIS, included pics, soundclips, files etc. Whether through BBM or Whatsapp or even email will count towards this "cap".
    Any internet browsing, facebook, tweets etc also count towards this "cap".

    As soon you have reached your "cap" your handset is limited to 2G.
    This includes any and all applications that requires 3G to operate optimally such as SatNav.

    It has been revealed that the SP Vodacom has been aware of the issues for a few months and that a solution had to be found.
    They have decided to not reveal this to the public but instead decided to continue to offer the Blackberry and BIS to an all too naive consumer.

    In all of this we have not heard from RIM at all.
    From the online comments, the current BB users are looking at flocking to other service providers but the rumour is that it will only be a short time before they adopt similar "caps".
    RIM stands to lose a large number of consumers.
    Actually it's still a yes, a blackberry works just fine on 2G, believe me, I live in a country where as soon as you get out of the city and even in the city, you're stuck on 2G, and I'm not talking the fast EDGE of 50kbs but the very slow GPRS of 2.5kb/s. Navigation on a blackberry does not require 3G.

    And Rim has as much say in the price of data as car manufacturers have a say in the price of petrol/diesel.

    Like it or not this is the way things are going, Vodafone uk gives 500mb and if you go over they charge you another £5 for another 500mb, in my case with a business contract I get 750 and then I pay £5 for 250mb if I go over.

    Be glad of the BIS data compression, it makes that 100mb last a lot longer.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
  10. kassdog's Avatar
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    What about just using wifi when available? That's what I've been doing in the states and seen my usuage drop considerably.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
  11. buckwylder's Avatar
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    that would be a ridiculous plan, for me too. capping data using bandwidth excuses or capacity excuses, does seem like a "way for fat cats to line their pockets" and i can understand how lame it would be to really exceed that, overage charges can be high, but i bet carriers would make more on unlimited data anyways. a lot of people in my part of canada use blackberry's and my provider would never limit their bb's, which are capacity god sends for the carriers, and really reliable and awesome smartphones for the consumer, so it makes sense for my (or any) provider to want to actually sell more blackberry devices, over other smartphones (they don't do that because technically they couldn't) - anyways... that would be a brutal cap for me and it seems weird that your carrier would do that, here's why:

    i get unlimited data, period. sixty bucks a month, tethering, whatever, mobile hotspot soon, anything. no extra fees. this plan is brilliant for 2 reasons: 1) my provider ends up actually making a good profit to keep growing and creating jobs because they have a lot of clients who probably pay $60 and hardly use any data, as a "just in case" data plan 2) i get unlimited data and use it a lot, not tons because i do not download a bunch of crap, lol, but it's my only connection to the internet for any device i might have...and all i have is a playbook, and a ps3 so it's perfect, lol - i use it for everything, anywhere my providers foot print reaches, which is essentially everywhere, it's awesome

    i worked for a large mobility telco as a tech, i won't argue about capacity and bandwidth, at the end of the day - caps are strictly for profit, that simple, lol - it's all for profit, that's not a problem for me, i'm just really happy with this kind of mobility freedom, so to speak. but i also wish every provider realized they could probably have more long term data clients and actually make more money in the long run, cuz of clients who may or may not use a ton of data, but have the peace of mind knowing they "just can", and from anywhere, promote it as "freedom" - people like that, anyways - i am rambling now

    i'm also lucky because i don't subscribe to anything except a mobility account, so sixty dollars a month isn't bad considering i do not have any television or landline related services

    i wish more carriers offered unlimited data, because it works for the provider and the consumer, a win win situation in my opinion

    another good thing here in canada is carriers use something called "grandfathering" - maybe that is just normal and everybody knows that, perhaps all carriers do it, but i remember from my old career in the industry, that having your plan "grandfathered" simply meant you would keep it for as long as you had an account and did not change your plan or sign a new contract. maybe all the carriers do this, lol - just means i get to keep this plan as long as i have an account.

    anyways, that sucks about their plan
    Last edited by buckwylder; 09-13-2011 at 09:07 PM.
  12. brades's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reed McLay View Post
    [color=green
    Today, that 6Gb plan is a collectors item, I could auction it for a small fortune. The typical data plan is now 500 Mb, which I consider more then adequate for BlackBerry service. [/color]
    The big three offer 6GB every year for a couple months.
  13. Artwerks's Avatar
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    It's ridiculous to limit the speed after only 100mb... They should do like my internet service provider (unrelated to mobile use, but it would work), it only limits the speed during rush hour or when necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by Reed McLay View Post
    Today, that 6Gb plan is a collectors item, I could auction it for a small fortune. The typical data plan is now 500 Mb, which I consider more then adequate for BlackBerry service.
    I just traded my unlimited BB data plan at 30$/month with Bell (no tethering) for a 500mb plan I could use in Canada and in the United States (tethering included). They also offered me a 6gb plan for 30$/month to use in Canada only (tethering included).

    I don't see these plans as collectors item. The unlimited data at 30$, which was a legacy, doesn't offer the possibility to tether and roaming charges are too expensive. The 6gb data plan offers tethering and is still available right now for anyone to sign up (6gb for 30$ at Bell, 1gb for 35$!!! Both includes tethering)
    Last edited by Artwerks; 09-13-2011 at 10:02 PM.
  14. d3adcrab's Avatar
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    OP forgot to mention the cost of the previously unlimited and now 100MB throttled BIS service is less than $9 USD per month...which is really not bad IMHO.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
  15. rcm1301's Avatar
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    SA BB fan, you say you pay R59 for inlimited BIS in South Africa. In today's exchange rate, that is about $8. The CHEAPEST unlimited plans in USA starts at about $30. So what are you complaining about?
  16. valkyrie's Avatar
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    Its a very good deal as it stands now. Its just that even on 3G, speeds on a Blackberry in SA seems to be slower than they should be when compared to non-BB devices using 3G. So if they drop it down to GPRS speeds, it will crawl so badly, that the entire experience will be almost unbearable.

    On the other hand, data prices (except for BIS) is South Africa are still ridiculous. to get 500MB a month will cost R300 or $43 or GBP30.
  17. Ousus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcm1301 View Post
    SA BB fan, you say you pay R59 for inlimited BIS in South Africa. In today's exchange rate, that is about $8. The CHEAPEST unlimited plans in USA starts at about $30. So what are you complaining about?
    Remember, South Africa is a third-world country. $8 is not a lot to you, but it is for some of us (many people don't even earn that much per day). Since we don't have cheap broadband in South Africa due to what is basically a monopoly, access to the internet through cellphones is the way most people go as it it more affordable. We are already ripped off so much that BIS and Blackberry was a welcome change and that's why Blackberry experienced a boom in our country.
  18. d3adcrab's Avatar
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  19. belfastdispatcher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudesai View Post
    Its a very good deal as it stands now. Its just that even on 3G, speeds on a Blackberry in SA seems to be slower than they should be when compared to non-BB devices using 3G. So if they drop it down to GPRS speeds, it will crawl so badly, that the entire experience will be almost unbearable.

    On the other hand, data prices (except for BIS) is South Africa are still ridiculous. to get 500MB a month will cost R300 or $43 or GBP30.
    No, completely wrong, a blackberry might be slower on 3G compared to other smartphones but but them side by side on 2G and a blackberry will fly, an iphone is completely useless on GPRS, needs at least edge speeds and even on that it's slow.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
  20. d3adcrab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ousus View Post
    Remember, South Africa is a third-world country. $8 is not a lot to you, but it is for some of us (many people don't even earn that much per day). Since we don't have cheap broadband in South Africa due to what is basically a monopoly, access to the internet through cellphones is the way most people go as it it more affordable. We are already ripped off so much that BIS and Blackberry was a welcome change and that's why Blackberry experienced a boom in our country.
    Please, I lived in SA, most people who can afford a BB are more than happy to pay R59 per month for their BIS which is considered very very cheap. Incidentally this is the same amount as a single lunch at Nandos, no? or two basic meals at McDonalds for non-SA people?

    Also, if you read the response from Vodacom, it appears that there are a few users who are clearly abusing the service by using it to download movies and eps, etc....this is definitely not the majority of folks who do a bit of browsing and use bbm...clearly a bunch of people who dont know the meaning of fair use, are engaging in illegal downloads...they have found a loop hole which they are exploiting. Not condoning the proposed cap which I believe is counter productive, but you can see the point the carrier has. Hope Rim gives them a solution to sort the outliers out without affecting the majority of normal users.
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    Well, you've got wifi from your wireless router to take advantage of, as BIS can go through it. So it's not the end of blackberry for that.

    I think the public should hold a protest, a peaceful loud one, outside the carrier's office building. Then, maybe then they'll get the message and raise the cap to 512MB.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
  22. belfastdispatcher's Avatar
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    Sorry, I would've proffered the throttled but unlimited data after 100mb. It would've stopped streaming but it would not have stopped large downloads. So the only thing that would've suffered would've been youtube watching.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
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    Don't let this abuse hogwash fool you, although it might be true. This is purely down to the release of the PlayBook by Vodacom and the company trying to curb the use of the Bridge software.

    BlackBerry has been around in South Africa for some time and if these so called 5% have been abusing the blackberry.net APN why are they only now attempting to throttle speeds which conveniently coincides with the release of the PlayBook?

    They should offer tiered BIS plans instead of limiting consumers to a measly 100MB per BIS cycle before being throttled. I don't mind paying for my usage...

    To top it all off BIS speeds are pathetic this side. When tethered I get between 1 - 2Mbps and while bridged I only get 0.3 - 0.5Mbps so I refuse to pay the equivalent of standard data bundles for BIS. I might as well get an Android or iPhone then.

    Anyway, it is all moot now as they have backtracked.
  24. gingertonic's Avatar
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    This is why my family and I pay premium prices to Verizon. People complain about how expensive big red can be, but at the end of the day I have unlimited data on every phone in the family plan, ridiculously fast internet that doesn't get throttled during peak hours or shared between a neighborhood like optimum does, and excellent TV service through FiOS.

    If you want the best, you had better be prepared to pay for it.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
  25. ADFXPro777's Avatar
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    100MB is more than enough for most Blackberry users, especially since most Blackberry users average around 50MB a month. Also, Blackberry has excellent data compression, making it 5x more data efficient than all other smartphones.
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