The PowerTel fibre internet backbone broke this morning. This backbone carries most of Zimbabwe’s traffic so when it goes down, it’s a really big deal. Service Providers are forced to reroute traffic via limited satellite capacity and this create enormous congestion for the country resulting in what may be referred to as tortoise internet.
Leading internet providers Africom, ZOL and YoAfrica communicated the outage to their clients this morning.
Africom, by SMS:
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P1 Fault: Please note that our main internet platform is down due to some challenges with transmission upstream. We are on our backup link which is slower.
ZOL, through an update on their @ZOLStatus account:
And Yo Africa, the email below:
The Powertel/Botswana Telecom fibre, feeding a large portion of the international and regional Internet Bandwidth into Zimbabwe, has developed a fault. This affects all Service Providers utilising this link. We do not at this time have details of the exact nature of the fault and the time to resolution.
YoAfrica has automatically switched to backup links, mainly over satellite and of a reduced capacity, this will increase latency and reduce browsing speeds.
We ask all users to be considerate during this time and refrain from bandwidth intensive activities such as peer to peer music, large downloads, streaming media etc. This will ensure fair usage for all subscribers.
We regret any inconvenience caused and assure you we are doing all we can to assist our upstream providers in coming to swift resolution.
YoAfrica Technical Team