Can’t connect to Twitter in SA? Thank the broken undersea cables for that


If you’re in South Africa and struggling to load Twitter today, don’t worry you’re not alone.

Due to undersea fibre cable breaks off the west coast of Africa, international traffic to and from the country has slowed to a crawl.

The breaks have also made accessing services located beyond South African borders a nightmare, and one of the services affected is Twitter.

We’ve tried a number of different methods to connect to the social network, include logging in to Tweetdeck, pinging Twitter via Windows’ command line tool, and using different mobile networks and connection types. All methods have failed.

The Meme staff also tried using Opera’s browser VPN and TunnelBear for Android, with the idea that perhaps connecting to Twitter through a different server located in India or Singapore would work, but nope. Nothing.

Interestingly, we’re still receiving notifications from Twitter via the Android app, but once tapped the app refuses to load any additional content.

On Friday ISP WebAfrica noted that website loading times would be longer and packet drops would be more pronounced, and this is what we’re now seeing with Twitter.

According to DownDetector, users across South Africa are affected.

The outage aggregator is also noting issues accessing other services from South Africa, especially international gaming servers. These include Call of Duty, Apex Legends, and Rainbow Six Siege.

Posts in Reddit’s r/SouthAfrica confirmed these issues.

The likes of Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook, and Google’s services remain unaffected.

It’s not clear when the undersea fibre cables will be repaired.

Feature image: the Twitter app on Android, by Shereesa Moodley/Memeburn

Andy Walker, former editor


Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights. sign up

Welcome to Memeburn

Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights.