Notes from underground

يارب يسوع المسيح ابن اللّه الحيّ إرحمني أنا الخاطئ

Telkom upgrade: lots of freebies, but what are they for?

One of those Telkom salespeople phoned a couple of months ago and offered us a faster Internet connection for an extra R100.00 a month, and it included free datadownloads between midnight and 6:00 am.

Since one son does computer animation which requires regular huge program updates, and the other likes to watch videos of motor racing, that seemed like a useful deal, so I signed up for it.

It came with a lot of other benefits. One was that it included Telkom-Telkom calls 24/7 instead of just during “CallMor” time. We don’t make many calls anyway, so it’s not really a benefit, but nice to know in case we need it.

But there were a lot of physical goodies too, which came in a big box.

The trouble is that there were no instructions, and only the barest descriptions, so we don’t know what half these things are, never mind how to use them, and for what.

So this is a plea for help: can anyone tell us what these things do, and if they are at all useful? Or do they just incur more liabilities?

Can we use any of them, or should we just advertise them for sale on an online auction site?

You can see the web page with the list of goodies here: Telkom Smarthome Premium ADSL.

And here are the goodies that came in the box:

  1. D-link ADSL Wi-Fi Router
  2. 3G Hauwei E5330 Mi-Fi Router
  3. Huawei Wi-Fi Range Extender
  4. Microsoft Office 365 (x2)
  5. SIM 1 with 1GB Data Every Month
  6. SIM 2 with 1GB Data Every Month
  7. SIM 3 with 100min Talk Time Every Month
  8. SIM 4 with 100min Talk Time Every Month
  9. Free DStv Explora

(1) The D-link ADSL Wi-Fi Router may be useful if our existing router gets struck by lightning.

(3) The Huawei Wi-Fi Range Extender may be useful for using laptops away from the router — is that what it does? How do we get it to work?

3G Hauwei E5330 Mi-Fi Router

3G Hauwei E5330 Mi-Fi Router

(2) 3G Hauwei E5330 Mi-Fi Router — Am I right in assuming that this could be used to connect to the Internet while travelling or during load shedding, using SIM cards (5) or (6)?

If so, it could be the most useful thing in the box. We’d just need to learn how to set it up and get it working.

MS Office 365

MS Office 365

(4) and (9) —Microsoft Office 365 and Free DStv Explora seem to be the gifts that go on taking, since it seems that you can’t use them without paying expensive monthly subscriptions. Should we try to sell them on an online auction site?

(7) & (8) the SIMs with 100min Talk Time Every Month seem to be useless without extra cell phones, or are they the kind that you can transfer your existing number to when your present contract expires?

Any ideas/comments/suggestions anyone?


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3 thoughts on “Telkom upgrade: lots of freebies, but what are they for?

  1. Andrew on said:

    Worth changing to the new router as it may have a greater bandwidth than your current one, that just means you can use more devices wirelessly in the house at the same time, not that you necessarily get greater speed from the modem to your server.
    The wifi extender, if it works like Australian ones, needs to be linked to your router, instructions would be handy, and then just put into a wall plug so it has power.
    The 3G router is, exactly as described, an option for data usage via the mobile towers, and I would put one of the sim cards into it. Make sure you do not loose the pin (the password for the gadget), mine is taped to the back. If you cannot find it, they often print them inside, under the battery casing. Try and get an app that will allow you to monitor your usage, or you may need to occasionally put the sim into a smart phone that can check the usage. Telkom may have one for tablets/ipads etc. and Huawei advertise that they have one, but it may not record the data that goes through the towers, which is what you are billed for.
    Good luck with your new technology.
    As for the office 365, it should come with a years subscription already paid for, and the handiest component is a terabyte of cloud storage.

  2. Well, I installed the range extender, and now my wife can’t connect to the network at all.

    You go into the network troubleshootying, and click “Help” to troubleshoot the connection, and you get Microsoft’s very own Catch 22. We can’t help you to connect to the Internet because you are not connected to the Internet.

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