Why fibre is better than mobile in South Africa
White woman smiling at her phone

For years, South Africans have been cancelling their fixed-line contracts, replacing their ADSL with something that has a bit more oomph. Both fibre internet and LTE mobile are arguably better than long-term contracts with an inefficient telecom provider. Poor customer service, slow speeds and rising costs have led many South Africans to ditch their antiquated lines in search of greener internet pastures. 

Modern life is characterised by screen time. Both work and play are increasingly happening in the digital world. Without a reliable, high-speed internet connection, households find themselves in the dark ages of telecommunications. As different connection types have become increasingly available, customers now have to make a decision between fibre and mobile. But which is better?

Growth in the telecommunication industry has inevitably led to increased competition, making world-class connectivity commercially viable for the mainstream consumer. Fibre has become the new norm. In South Africa, if fibre is available in the area where you live, you have no excuse for why your Zoom call lags or slow buffering speeds on your favourite video streaming service. Let’s explore some of the reasons why it is better than mobile in South Africa. 

Fibre beats mobile hands-down 

Whichever way you look at it, fibre is better than mobile. Cost, performance and reliability are all superior with fibre. Even though it has triggered mobile data costs to drop, consumers still face the ever-present threat of being charged those dreaded out-of-bundle rates if they happen to run out of mobile data before the end of the month. 

For heavy data users, such as those who work, study, or entertain themselves online, mobile data just won’t cut it. It’s a drain on your wallet and is simply an unnecessary expense when more cost-effective solutions are available. Most fibre internet providers offer free installation and month-to-month contracts, making the service affordable for those who don’t have extra income. 

In terms of performance, mobile will never be as powerful as fibre, which offers much faster speeds and lower latency. This is important for home users and for those running their businesses from home. With fibre, users can enjoy the same upload and download speeds that remain stable, no matter the weather or how many users are connected. 

That being said, not all fibre internet providers offer the same quality services, so be sure to sign up to a reputable provider, such as WonderNet, to make sure you have a dedicated connection with no hidden costs and industry-leading uptime. 

Fibre infrastructure in South Africa

If you are living in a remote or rural area, fibre may not be available in your area just yet and you may have no choice but to use mobile data to connect to the world wide web. But in most urban areas, including small towns, fibre infrastructure has already been set up. These fibre networks are expanding on a weekly basis.

There has been an explosion in demand in recent years with more of us using our homes as an office or classroom. This trend has been a catalyst for fibre roll-out in most residential areas across the country. High levels of demand help to lower the cost of deploying fibre. Even areas which, historically, have had poor infrastructure are now fibre-ready. 

Given the current energy crisis faced by South Africa, more internet users are looking for Eskom-proof connectivity. During load shedding, it is common for mobile networks to also go down. Mobile towers require electricity and during power cuts, they run on backup batteries. Signal strength drops and our web pages struggle to load. 

Fibre users can avoid these power cut headaches by getting an Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS). This device is essentially a battery that can power your fibre router for a few hours – enough to get you through rolling periods of load shedding. 

Fibre packages compared to mobile

At WonderNet, we make sure that our customers have access to the best internet in their price range. We have different packages to suit different types of users, and these packages can be quickly and easily upgraded as our customers’ needs change. 

Light users can choose a small package that will give them access to their social media and email, without needing to pay for data they will never use. More seasoned internet users, who require ultrafast uncapped connectivity, can subscribe to our top-of-the-range packages, connecting up to 10 devices to a superfast dedicated fibre line. 

Mobile users, on the other hand, are often tied into 36-month contracts that quickly fall short of their internet data needs. With today’s rapidly-evolving technologies, internet users should expect a flexible subscription that can be easily scaled up or down, according to how much data they need. This is why fibre has become a household standard for most city dwellers. 

The future of the internet in South Africa

Three decades ago, every home had a landline phone. Twenty years ago, cell phones started to make an appearance in pockets and handbags across the country. Ten years ago, internet access became an absolute necessity for most people, both at home and on the go. Now, we expect to have access to world-class internet from the comfort of our own homes. 

As fibre internet has become more widely available, high-speed internet has become a more integral part of our daily lives, both professionally and socially. Looking ahead, virtual worlds that are accessed by augmented reality headsets will require users to have a steady, ultrafast internet line. Mobile internet won’t make the cut. 

WonderNet offers an extensive home fibre package called The Bells & Whistles. This is delivered at speeds of up to 200Mbps and can support up to 10 connected devices. For more information about our fibre offerings or to get a quote for an internet upgrade, please contact us today or check if we’re connected to your address.

WonderNet brings affordable broadband internet to South African homes. We work alongside leading fibre network providers to maximise our reach and to offer fast, reliable and secure internet connectivity to your home. We are owned by SEACOM; one of Africa’s top information and communications technology (ICT) companies with an expansive network of subsea cables, landlines and fibre connections. WonderNet strives to offer the best customer service in the country. We will go above and beyond to ensure that our customers are satisfied with their internet access.

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