South Africans may still struggle to get online today

  • Multiple cable faults have thrown connectivity in South Africa into disarray.
  • Firms such as Angola Cables are rerouting traffic along the SACS cable that connects Africa to Brazil.
  • Microsoft says it hopes to have its services restored by 16:00 SAST today.

For most of Thursday South African internet denizens were suffering with slow speed and an inability to connect to some services altogether.

After much confusion it was ultimately determined that the cause for the terrible internet connectivity was down to multiple cable breaks. Fibre cables running along the West Coast of Africa including WACS, MainOne, SAT3, and ACE all have reduced capacity according to an update from Microsoft.

“In addition to these cable impacts, the on-going cable cuts in the Red Sea — EIG, Seacom, AAE-1 — are also impacting overall capacity on the East Coast of Africa. These incidents together had reduced the total network capacity for most of Africa’s regions,” Microsoft wrote in an Azure Services update.

Late on Thursday evening, Angola Cables advised that it was redirecting traffic along its SACS cable which stretches from Angola to Brazil where connectivity to the US and UK is provided. This may cause increased latency so you may want to delay any online gaming you plan on doing today.

“Angola Cables has network backup and restoration solutions available through cables that have not been affected by the faults off the Ivory Coast,” the firm wrote in a press release.

Angola Cables also notes that the cause of the cable issues isn’t yet known.

“Our technical team is currently diligently working with industry partners to stabilise international connectivity and to ensure that we can provide support and guarantee the stability of services to African network operators and entities that need it,” the ICT firm added.

Microsoft says it is adding capacity to its local services and expects services to return to normal – or a version of it at least – by 16:00 SAST on Friday afternoon. With that in mind, services could return to normal at any moment so it’s worth checking the link above for updates.

Anecdotally, many in the Hypertext office are experiencing problems connecting to a number of websites. Even platforms like are slow to load if they load at all. While things may improve and providers move their traffic to backup cables, it’s looking like another slow internet day for South Africans.

[Photo – Sigmund on Unsplash]


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