The best South African ISPs for gamers

A stable online connection is one of the most important considerations for online gamers.

If these gamers want to play online, it is critical that their connection allows them to do so without lagging or disconnecting them from the game.

Likewise, as more gamers switch to purchasing digital versions of video games, it has become important to have a connection that can download large games fast.

When deciding on an ISP, it is therefore important that gamers do their research.

Steam download speeds

If you are a PC gamer, you will probably download a lot of your video games from Steam.

It is therefore important that your download speed when accessing Steam’s servers is high.

Steam has detailed the average download speeds for users of various top South African ISPs, which can be viewed below.

ISP speeds on Steam
ISP Download Speed
Cool Ideas 32.2Mbps
Afrihost [Fibre] 28Mbps
Web Africa 25.5Mbps
Vox Telecom 23.8Mbps
Vodacom Business 20.9Mbps
Axxess 18Mbps
Afrihost [Other] 17Mbps
MWEB 14.8Mbps
Rain 12.5Mbps
Telkom Internet 8.9Mbps

It is worth noting that there may be faster ISPs that are not on the list; however, these ISPs were not among the top 10 most popular ISPs in South Africa according to Steam.

At the time of writing, the average download rate over the past seven days was 15.5Mbps, while South African users had downloaded a total of 749TB – which accounted for 0.2% of global Steam traffic.

ISP speeds in South Africa

MyBroadband’s Speed Test tracks the speeds recorded when users gauge their upload and download speeds.

The latest data on the download and upload speeds of South Africa’s most popular ISPs was published in August 2020.

The median download speed, upload speed, and latency of South Africa’s top ISPs are provided.

Latency, also known as ‘ping’ in gaming circles, refers to the time between the user issuing a command on their device, and the command being executed online.

This means that the lower the latency number, the better the experience of the gamer.

It should be noted that these speeds are technology-dependent and should therefore not be seen as a reflection of network performance.

August 2020 ISP Rankings
ISP Latency (ms) Download Speed (Mbps) Upload Speed (Mbps) Rating
Cool Ideas 6 18.451 11.224 4.06
RSAWEB 7 13.655 10.213 3.60
Afrihost 13 10.094 9.112 3.59
Supersonic 8 18.784 18.965 3.50
Vodacom 32 10.656 8.003 3.47
MTN 43 15.478 10.992 3.47
Vox 19 13.086 9.952 3.46
Webafrica 7 18.295 10.258 3.34
Axxess 23 7.801 3.510 3.25
Internet Solutions 45 7.931 5.628 3.23
MWEB 16 9.586 4.892 3.06
Liquid Telecom 40 5.028 4.649 3.04
Cell C 30 12.022 9.802 2.82
HeroTel 43 4.850 2.068 2.79
Rain 39 3.235 4.295 2.62
Telkom 34 5.809 1.690 2.55

Customer satisfaction

While the previous table provided customer satisfaction ratings, MyBroadband recently published its Q3 2020 broadband and ISP report, which provides a more up-to-date view on South African users’ favourite ISPs.

The report is based on thousands of customer satisfaction ratings from South African users between 1 July and 30 September 2020.

This report details the highest-rated ISPs – both among the larger ISPs, and smaller ones.

These details are below. Note that the rating is out of 10.

ISP Rankings
ISP Rating
Cool Ideas 7.88
Afrihost 7.54
Vox 7.37
MTN 7.35
Webafrica 7.18
Supersonic 6.94
Axxess 6.93
Vodacom 6.85
Internet Solutions 6.57
MWEB 6.40
Liquid Telecom 6.24
Cell C 6.17
HeroTel 6.13
Telkom 5.32
Rain 5.29
Smaller ISP Scores
ISP Rating
Seacom 8.74
Cybersmart 8.58
Mind the Speed 8.42
CipherWave 8.20
Level-7 7.52
Rocketnet 7.44
Home Connect 7.32
Ikeja 7.27
Metrofibre Networx 7.20
Wirulink 6.73
Amobia 6.18
Letabanetworks 6.13
Accelerit 6.00
Jenny Internet 5.20
Screamer Telecommunications 4.92

Now read: South African ISP rankings – Good news for Cool Ideas and Afrihost, but bad news for Rain

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The best South African ISPs for gamers