Orange on Wednesday launched the Flybox, a GSM router targeting small office and home users. The router runs on Orange's recently launched High Speed Packet Access + (HSPA+) network which offers speeds of up to 21 Megabits per second (21 Mbps ). The router can connect up to 10 computers silmutaneously via WiFi and ethernet cables and has a maximum speed of 7.2 Mbps (High Speed Packet Access).
Targeting both postponed and prepaid users, the Flybox can also offer telephone services. Users of the device will also be provided with up to 10 email addresses with 2 GB capacity. Also integrated into the Flybox is a parental control feature for parents who would like to control how their children use the internet.
The device is available in Orange shops today and will cost KSh 16, 999 for prepaid customers to use with prepaid bundles. Postpaid customers get the device free with monthly rates starting at Kes 6, 399 for 10 GB data and 8, 399 for 10 GB data, 2000 minutes and a Panasonic headset. The catch though is that the 2000 minutes are only applicable for Orange to Orange calls. Also available are 20 GB and 50 GB data bundles at Kes 9, 399 and Kes 20,599 respectively, with additional charges of Kes 2,000 for 2,000 Orange to Orange minutes.
Commenting during the launch, Orange Chief Executive Officer, Mikhael Ghossein said, " We have designed this structure in a way that the cost of the modem will reduce, based on the bundle that you choose. Those who chose the highest bundle will walk away with with a free high speed modem, in addition to other benefits such as free email. Our 3G network is the best with bufferless YouTube streaming, hence well suited for the youth."
Ghossein said that Orange would unlikely adjust local charges soon as other operators, except Safaricom, had not done so. Some international tariffs though were likely to rise based on the strength of the dollar. The CEO also said the firm woul not venture into triple play due to the high cost of setting up such a platform and that of purchasing required content.