Fibre is the fastest thing this side of the sun and everybody’s talking about it. So what’s all the fuss about? Is it simply about speed, or is there more? Read on to find out how Fibre compares to ADSL and whether taking the Fibre plunge is worth it!

ADSL – The Facts

ADSL or Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line – yes, that’s why you probably didn’t know what it stands for – works with copper cable and offers high-speed connectivity, as opposed to older technologies, such as dial up internet that worked through a landline with a modem.


  • It is available in most areas. 
  • It offers competitive speeds for users that are seeking basic connectivity and are not overly active online.
  • There are capped and uncapped versions available depending on your needs. 


  • The further your home is from the Telkom Exchange (little structures set up in certain neighbourhoods where connections meet locally), the slower your ADSL speed. Word on the street is that anyone living 5 or more kilometres from an exchange is wasting their time with ADSL.
  • ADSL is susceptible to electrical interference and requires a lot of maintenance, which means there are often reliability issues.
  • You need a landline to be able to access the internet with ADSL.

Available Speeds: ADSL is available in the following speeds: 1, 2, 4, 8, 10, 20 and 40 Mbps (Megabits per second).

Fibre – The Facts

Fibre, or Fibre Optics, literally harnesses the speed of light by transferring data through means of glass cabling. This makes it the fastest and most reliable form of internet connectivity currently available.


  • This technology offers several benefits, such as clarity and reliability in data transfer. One of the reasons for this is that glass cannot conduct electricity, so electrical storms, for instance, will cause less interference on the lines. 
  • Data can travel up to 50 km to/from an exchange before any form of degradation in speed takes place! So it does not matter how far you are from your exchange.
  • Fibre cabling itself is similar in price to the copper used for ADSL, but much easier to maintain.
  • You do not need a landline to access the internet with Fibre.
  • And the best part about Fibre is that new ways might be found to transmit light data even faster without the infrastructure becoming redundant.
  • There are capped and uncapped options are being rolled out as you read. 


  • The biggest drawback to Fibre at the moment is that it is new on the market and not available in all locations yet! That said, Webafrica can already offer Fibre access in almost 100,000 locations, so it is worth checking whether you are eligible.

Available Speeds: Fibre is available in the following speeds: 2, 4, 8, 10, 20, 40, 50 and 100 Mbps (depending on Fibre provider).

ADSL vs Fibre

Why is Fibre so desirable? While the blistering speed is the most attractive prospect to many people, the true beauty of Fibre lies in its reliability, and it not being dependent on a landline. If you can get Fibre in your area, swapping out a 40 Mbps ADSL line for a 40 Mbps Fibre line even makes sense when you consider that your extraordinarily fast internet won’t fail you when you need it most – and if you can get something faster, even better!  

Here’s how a 10 Mbps ADSL line performs against a 100 Mbps Fibre line.

Download 10 Mbps ADSL 100 Mbps Fibre 
100 MB Download (Roughly 50 Photos) 1 minute and 20 seconds 8 seconds
5 GB (1 High Definition [HD] Movie) 1 hour and 8 minutes 6 minutes and 49 seconds

How Do I Know What Is Right For Me?

Check out our infographic below to determine how much data you use when online. If you spend a lot of time streaming Netflix and tunes or downloading larger files, then a fast connection will mean you can do so much more, so much faster. With 100 Mbps Fibre, you can download a 2 GB game in less than 3 minutes, where it will take you almost 30 minutes with 10 Mbps ADSL.  


Infographic by Amiel Botha

If you’re interested in Capped Fibre or ADSL the infographic above can help you decide how much data you use. If you’re looking to go Uncapped, then data won’t concern you, as there is no limit on how much you can use.

How Do I Get Fibre?

Check on our Fibre map to see if you can get it and sign up for Fibre now, email our Fibre team at or call us on our dedicated Fibre line: 086 000 9555.

We don’t want to leave anybody out, so if you can’t get Fibre yet, you can leave your details on the map on the Fibre page, and we will let you know as soon as it reaches your neighbourhood!

Article Name
So What's The Difference Between Fibre And ADSL?
Fibre is the fastest thing this side of the sun and everybody’s talking about it. So what’s all the fuss about? Is it simply about speed, or is there more?