The presidency’s declaration of COVID-19 as a national disaster at the weekend has forced many people to work remotely if they can. This is coupled with schools and tertiary institutions shutting their doors during the outbreak too this week, which means more people will be at home and utilising data, whether it be fibre or mobile-based.

To address this increased demand for the former, Vumatel has announced that it will be upgrading line speeds for its customers in a bid to assist those working remotely in particular.

“Vumatel together with its participating ISP partners will be upgrading the line speeds of its existing users on the network at no additional cost, with effect 1 April 2020 until the end of May 2020, to enable seamless remote working, additional streaming and educational services,” the network confirmed in a press release sent to Hypertext.

The upgrade will see customers move up one spot to the next available line speed. This sadly does not apply to those with a 1Gbps line, as Vumatel does not have anything faster at this stage.

The company says that it has been in consultation with a number of its ISP partners, to discuss the initiative, and many of the ISPs, who have the capacity to do so, will participate.

“Our ISPs are a critical enabler of this initiative and we believe that in our own small way, we are collectively helping to make remote working and online learning, an easier process for many,” explains Vumatel CCO, Simon Butler.

As such it will be dependant on your ISP as to whether an upgrade is made available, so it’s worthwhile finding out if they will be assisting.

The network adds that for new customers in the process of installing fibre, it will waive its monthly line rental over the next two months together with participating ISPs.

“We have a responsibility to make it easier for people to stay connected as they navigate the next few weeks of working and learning from home. By increasing  the line speeds we will make content streaming and educational services more seamless; as well as enable a better remote working experience,” Butler concludes.

It is pleasing to see a network take steps to help its users at the moment, but we’re hoping more local networks take a similar approach, as data and connectivity are crucial at the moment.

[Image – Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash]