[LINK] Carrier pigeon delivers data faster than Telkom

Bernard Robertson-Dunn brd at iimetro.com.au
Fri Sep 11 11:00:10 AEST 2009

 From the "it couldn't happen here?" file

Carrier pigeon delivers data faster than Telkom
 From correspondents in Johannesburg, South Africa
September 10, 2009 08:06am

A SOUTH African information technology company has proved it was faster 
for them to transmit data with a carrier pigeon than to send it using 
Telkom , the country's leading internet service provider.

Internet speed and connectivity in Africa's largest economy are poor 
because of a bandwidth shortage. It is also expensive.

Local news agency SAPA reported the 11-month-old pigeon, Winston, took 
one hour and eight minutes to fly the 80km from Unlimited IT's offices 
near Pietermaritzburg to the coastal city of Durban with a data card was 
strapped to his leg.

Including downloading, the transfer took two hours, six minutes and 57 
seconds - the time it took for only four per cent of the data to be 
transferred using a Telkom line.

SAPA said Unlimited IT performed the stunt after becoming frustrated 
with slow internet transmission times.

The company has 11 call-centres around the country and regularly sends 
data to its other branches.

Telkom could not immediately be reached for comment.

Internet speed is expected to improve once a new 17,000km underwater 
fibre-optic cable linking southern and East Africa to other networks 
becomes operational before South Africa hosts the soccer World Cup next 

Local service providers are currently negotiating deals for more bandwidth.


Bernard Robertson-Dunn
Canberra Australia
brd at iimetro.com.au

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