SA Digital Villages + Afrihost experience

Diego Tristan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2010
Messages
159
Hi

Experience share:

I moved to a new complex in Lonehill, Jhb. Only option was SA Digital Villages (SADV). Google ratings are pathetic and HelloPeter probably worse, so I was not hopeful at all. I actually wanted to join MTN Lonehill as they have a specific contract in this area. Stayed in Beverly AH (next to Lonehill in Fourways) for three months from Jan 2018 and I enjoyed the 100Mbps connection with MTN.

Applied for a 20Mbps fibre line with 100GB cap to try and gauge what my usage would be in a given month. Went with Afrihost. R689 per month. Afrihost are running a special where they cover your installation as well as router costs. So all I've paid so far is the R689. Not bad.

Timeline:
16 March (Fri) - Placed order with Afrihost
18 March (Sun) - got confirmation that order was sent to SADV
19 March (Mon) - confirmation email from SADV that order received with two week waiting time to come.
23 March (Fri) - router dispatched by Afrihost.
29 March (Thurs - day before Easter / Good Friday) - router arrives.
- Fibre installer (FOSC) arrive at 4PM to commence installation of cabling.
- Installation not completed by FOSC due to inability to locate the correct manhole to make my block of
apartments "go live".
2 April (Tuesday - after long weekend) - FOSC return as well as Afrihost technician who brings the 801 router.
- FOSC complete installation in less than 40 minutes.
- Afrihost technician unable to activate router. Goes back to office and calls me saying the firmware needs
updating on router and will return following morning to swap out routers.
3 April (Wednesday) - technician returns with new router. I speedtest the network... getting between 2 and 5Mbps!
- try logging onto the Afrihost Client Zone and after putting in my password, I then get a "You're
connected" sms / email. Do another speedtest. 19.5 up, 19.0 down. Not bad.

Took about 2 and a half weeks from start to end.
It was not smooth even though this timeline simplifies it. Many phone calls and strongly worded emails (regrettably) happened to get the job done.

The surprises you might be in for, installing fibre:
- Just accept that its going to take a month and then you won't want to tear your hair out.
- There are two routers: the Wifi router and the Fibre (801) router. ISP should provide both so make sure they are dispatched together or hassle them on the phone the morning set for installation, to bring both.
- Usually the first visit to the site of installation is not for installation purposes but rather for site inspection but if you are forward like me and stern on the phone then you can perhaps muscle them into doing both in one go.
- If you are in a complex please note that the fibre installers may need access to other units in your block to "daisy chain" the wiring.
- As they need access to other units (potentially), YOU will have to go and knock on their doors and forewarn them and arrange a mutually acceptable time that is still within working hours... good luck. Some neighbours can be rude so brace yourself.
- SADV DID NOT TELL ME that they couldn't make contact with the respective units that they needed to go through to get the cabling up to me and this delayed the process by one week - I WAS BOILING. Please be proactive and phone them to find out which units they may need to access. If you are on the third floor, then it is likely the two units directly below you.
- I was blessed enough that they didn't need to access the other units and could work around that, especially seeing as the installation of cabling ran over two separate days which could upset your neighbours.
- MTN through SmartVillages have decently priced uncapped packages (google SmartVillages), you get a free router but they only finance the first 8metres of installation then its your cost. I am on the third floor of my block and they had to use 40 metres of fibre for safety -- so BEWARE.
- When ordering the wifi router from Afrihost, my router wasn't delivered for a whole week and the installers were coming before I even had a router so I was concerned and hassled Afrihost / Dawn Wing till I got it. Do yourself a favour and phone phone phone to get the tracking number from Dawn Wing and phone them yourself. The router was at the warehouse in Jhb East (airport side) - I'm in the North -- I couldn't drive there due to work but it is an option next time.
- Work on your relationship with your boss beforehand because you need to be present whilst they install -- meaning time away from work. In my case three days. You are warned.
- PHONE PHONE PHONE. If you place the order on Monday, phone them on Tuesday and on Wednesday and Thursday and Friday. Phone both the ISP and the fibre provider This is the only thing that will move the process along. Had I just sat back then I would not have known that I didn't furnish my unit number in my order for Dawn Wing to deliver the wifi router, only to find out that it was sitting in the warehouse no longer marked for delivery! Yes, my error. Furthermore, I would not have known that SADV couldn't get in touch with the tenants staying below me. Also, had I not phoned on the day scheduled for installation they would not have come out - technicians were apparently still stuck at site 1 and I was site 3 on the list for that day. This led to a strongly worded (again, regrettably) email and then they jumped to send someone at 4PM from Alberton, the day before Good Friday.
- The estate management may be a bit lethargic when it comes to responding to your email as to who the fibre installer is in the area so phone the ISPs directly and ask them.
- SADV supplied me with a multiplug as both routers need to be plugged in, so be prepared to lose two sockets.
- Fibre connection through the wall is in the kitchen next to the stove so be careful (if you stay in a Summercon type apartment).

Connection is flawless. 20Mbps is probably overkill for a single user. 10Mbps should suffice and even if it doesn't, Afrihost offer month to month so you can just upgrade at the end of the month. Don't be afraid to go with SADV and Afrihost. I'm content. Ask for "Pretty" from SADV - she sorted out all my grievances.

Good night

Mods please sticky this.
 

Flamer283

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2014
Messages
237
Thanks for this SADV is currently installing fibre lines in my area. And seeing Afrihost offering free installation and free router, it would seem like a good choice to go with them.
 

Diego Tristan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2010
Messages
159
Thanks for this SADV is currently installing fibre lines in my area. And seeing Afrihost offering free installation and free router, it would seem like a good choice to go with them.
You're welcome mate. Internet is not even a stress now, thankfully. And I present live online lectures and no stresses so far. It's a schlep to get it installed but once in, you're living.
 

cavedog

Honorary Master
Joined
Oct 19, 2007
Messages
14,333
I'm not a big fan of Afrihost but they have decent deals. Not sure if Afrihost Plus+ also work for fibre but I'm sure it should especially if you are on capped. If it does work nice to see that for R109 extra a month they can double you data something that you can keep in mind if you run out of data.
 

eg2505

Honorary Master
Joined
Mar 12, 2008
Messages
16,013
I wont go with SADV, they promise and dont deliver, my entire complex of some 1000 plus units isnt going to be cabled by them,
(that much I have ascertained)

lets hope telkom is better, as they held a roadshow in our area and we expecting Telkom to hook up all to fibre as soon as possible,

as LTE is nice, but sucky sometimes, with dropped connections ect....
 

Diego Tristan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2010
Messages
159
I'm not a big fan of Afrihost but they have decent deals. Not sure if Afrihost Plus+ also work for fibre but I'm sure it should especially if you are on capped. If it does work nice to see that for R109 extra a month they can double you data something that you can keep in mind if you run out of data.
Thanks man, I didn't even know about this. Will Google a bit. Good looking out
 

Diego Tristan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2010
Messages
159
I wont go with SADV, they promise and dont deliver, my entire complex of some 1000 plus units isnt going to be cabled by them,
(that much I have ascertained)

lets hope telkom is better, as they held a roadshow in our area and we expecting Telkom to hook up all to fibre as soon as possible,

as LTE is nice, but sucky sometimes, with dropped connections ect....
That's max frustrating, sorry to hear bud. Hassle them - get your complex mates to phone in daily for about a week or two and send carefully worded emails. If you pressure them, then they will respond. No point relying on the estate management but CC them in emails and specifically mention them in the body of the email.

Mail jason@sadv.co.za - ask him to escalate your grievance to Pretty
 
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