Home Gaming No Xbox Live for South Africa

No Xbox Live for South Africa

56 second read

Well this is disappointing news for the end of the day.

Over at www.myadsl.co.za they are running an article about how Microsoft are going to be moving some of their focus over to the casual gaming market, but what really got my attention was the following.

However, Stefan Lampinen, sales director for Microsoft’s home and entertainment division in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, says it is unlikely that the service will be launched here in the short term as the low penetration of broadband makes it difficult to justify costs.

Basically because we only have around 500 000 broadband users in South Africa and so Microsoft believe that we are not ready for broadband Internet.

As much as we don’t want to hear it you can see his point, especially when we are competing against a country like Turkey which has 4.5 million broadband users.

So we have an answer of sorts… pity it isn’t the right one.

Focusing on the casual market

Last Updated: January 16, 2008


  1. JimBob

    January 16, 2008 at 17:23

    So, Microsoft South Africa has been clueless and/or lying all this time. Why didn’t they give us a straight answer to start with, given that answer was something like: beat it third world losers, we don’t care about you?

    For many people, the availability of an official online service is an important aspect of their buying decision. I also think a raw comparison of Turkey’s broadband numbers vs ours is probably a dumb way to make the decision.


  2. LazySAGamer

    January 16, 2008 at 18:04

    Well I don’t think Microsoft were lying, I have sat in a few meetings with them and discussed this exact issue. They really are trying and like you say a straight comparison between broadband numbers is not the right way to do this.

    I know that John Press of Microsoft South Africa was just this week pushing for us to get Live so lets not take it out on the local guys… I don’t see this as the end of the battle either….


  3. evilredzombie

    January 16, 2008 at 19:07

    Ever watched “The Girl next door” that dude SAMSANG….they F…ed me mamma ,,,,they realy F…ed me.
    Thank you sony..thank you for giving us PSN SA


  4. PillsburyDeeBoy

    January 16, 2008 at 21:28

    Why am I not surprised? I’ve been saying this for months – we just don’t have enough people to make it worth their while. 500 000 broadband users versus …? 2000 Xbox Live users versus North America 2 million users. Come now, guys…it’s just business.


  5. LazySAGamer

    January 16, 2008 at 21:48

    @Pillsbury, Yeah but they also need to remember that if they are going to try and win the global campaign then they need to cater for the smaller markets.

    We may not have all the money but we can kick up a stink if we get abused.


  6. evilredzombie

    January 16, 2008 at 22:03

    All I can say is keep going guys.. I stil have a profile on live and will continue to support the fight for live sa. More racket needs to be made


  7. Messiah

    January 16, 2008 at 22:04

    hmmm, anyone want to play Playstation?


  8. J4NR1K

    January 17, 2008 at 07:01

    Makes no difference to my daily Live.

    So we potentially pay a bit more per year.. yada yada… still able to play the games I love with the people I love, everyday.


  9. Lupus

    January 17, 2008 at 07:46

    Yeah but we get more and more restrictions on what we can and cannot download, we also have to commit credit card fraud, find dodgy means of purchasing the points. It’s not hard for Microsoft to just enable South Africa, make us pay in local currency, we do not need to have servers here. But if we do have servers here we could service the whole of Africa, Microsoft SA and Redmond have to stop thinking small scale here, the combined broadband users of Africa must be a bit more?


  10. Roto

    January 17, 2008 at 08:25

    Everyone is complaining that the download of content is being restricted. Now is this MS restricting it, or is this via demands from the studio’s and record labels? Remember, the UK only got a video market place a few weeks ago, more than a year after the US got it. In order for there to be a Live market place, MS needs to license to content from 3rd parties like movie studio’s and they are the ones telling MS that in order to have the content, they must restrict the access.

    And by having a Live service in SA, does not mean you will get the content either! It will then be governed by SA movie and music companies and by various content laws.


  11. JimBob

    January 17, 2008 at 08:31

    Microsoft’s broadband numbers seem outdated, researchers project 1.3 million broadband subscribers by the end of the year:


    And it’s all very well saying we can still use workarounds to access Live – but don’t be too surprised when they cut us off completely. Mark my words, it’s coming, especially after the capacity planning problemes they had in December.

    We can’t afford to be complacent – then again, when there are alternatives like the PSN and PC gaming, it’s hard to see why we should be fighting Microsoft to give us is complete product rather than a half-assed one.


  12. Evilredzombie

    January 17, 2008 at 08:51

    PSN is due for a major rework this year and with the buzz on the net im sure they will give MS a go. I know currently live is far better… however, every one in SA in on illegally and MS will cut you down…Sony says we acknowledge you SA and we give you PSN free.. they also say we know its not great and not just say they are fixing it but you can see they are.


  13. BlueCollar

    January 17, 2008 at 09:07

    I must agree with Evilredzombie on this one. While Live is admittedly better than PSN (for now), I greatly respect Sony for making PSN a) available in SA, b) free. I’ve never been happy with the fact that you have to pay to play games online on a 360, when PC games (MMOs notwithstanding) and PS3 games are free to play online. The fact that M$ doesn’t offer the service in SA, is just salt in the wound.


  14. doobiwan

    January 17, 2008 at 09:57

    Frankly I don’t need ‘Live SA’ I have been using live UK for ages without major complaint. I can game and access Live and XNA so I’m happy.

    We don’t need our own servers, frankly I’d be a stoked puppy if they’d just sell “Live UK” points and subs cards here in most retail stores. That’s all we really need.

    Oh well.


  15. koldFU5iON

    January 17, 2008 at 11:07

    It’s not illegal to be online and play in South Africa, if you’ve purchased an pre-paid card legally via a store, or it was gift from a friend overseas you can use that card to activate your account the only time you are doing things illegally is when you use your credit card and the billing address don’t match up that’s Fraud.

    This is still dis-heartening tho. although it doesn’t effect me greatly my personal goal with my site http://www.thexboxlounge.co.za is slowly diminishing as we built it in the hopes that MS would eventually activate live in SA. And what’s worse is the Majority of Consumers don’t even realise that you can connect your Xbox Via Live.

    Personally I’m going to make a statement about this and educate the population with or without MS’s Help. I’ve done so, so far and don’t see any reason not to continue.


  16. Vincent Maher

    January 18, 2008 at 11:02

    I am a fan of the Xbox, I switched from PS and that took some doing. I distinctly remember, while making this decision, that MS was saying the Live was imminent and on its way – that was one of the reasons I decided to cross the floor.

    So this feels to me like a betrayal – where is the official statement saying we’re sorry we led you on but our bosses think we’re insignificant. Of course it’s a straight business decision and, let’s face it, our market is tiny – the attitude is what bothers me.

    People don’t have loyalty to a platform on the basis of a set of reasons that are all rational. There is an emotional component to it and this, ultimately, is what keeps people loyal. If I was completely rational I’d think about it this way:

    1. My X is paid for so I could buy another console now
    2. MS isn’t bringing Live to SA but the value in the games is increasingly based on multiplayer
    3. Sony has a free network that might become better
    4. I can keep my X and still play my old games but start buying new games on PS3 so I don’t lose my collection
    5. Blueray just won the format war, a player costs close to the PS3 anyway so I may as well do it

    Therefore, screw my XBox and MS.

    However, there is something that makes me feel loyal to my Xbox – maybe its time invested, hours enjoyed etc. But MS are not making me feel like that relationship is reciprocated and so The 5 points above start to make more sense to me.

    Yes, I am upset. Maybe I should get a life.


  17. Pozat

    January 25, 2008 at 22:03

    this is just not fair. i bet most of us here have had the 360 for well over a year now. why does microsoft provide the console for us to buy if they’re only going to provide half the features???? so now the profits they gained from us are being used to improve live in america and in uk…its kak.


  18. Aslam

    February 5, 2008 at 16:34

    I’ve got 2 Xbox 360’s and about 20 games. I’ve just installed a 4mbps line at home and bought a 107 Full HD Bravia screen. I was really stoked about Xbox live. I’ve Always been a fan of PS especially Tekken. We’re not getting Xbox Live in S.A, we’re not getting Tekken on Xbox 360, so screw Microsoft, I’M GOING BACK TO SONY!


  19. doobiwan

    March 18, 2008 at 00:08

    woot. Link love for thread resurrection! 😉

    Shame Aslam, boo boo shucks. Too much PT to enter a postal code? I guess no-one mentioned that Tekkens platforms haven’t been announced and is probably coming to 360…

    doobiwan’s last blog post..Ranting in my armchair: The 360 Price Cut & Why the Arcade wins


  20. I_want_live!!!!

    March 24, 2008 at 17:55

    I think MS attitude sucks. It’s so difficult for us South Africans to have a decent game on live. I don’t want to have to play with a constant 1 second lag but more so I don’t want to have to create A NEW ACCOUNT every month!!! It’s not fair that we should have to order our account subscription from overseas just to be able to play online. If they don’t want to give us servers at least do us some justice and give us the option to pay for our subscription legally! As far as I remember our country was promised that live would be launched here but now we all sit a year later and there is still no progress. No excuse MS offers will make me change my mind on this topic. As far as I’m concerned MS has more than sufficient money to accommodate our country and I don’t see how the amount of users should make a difference, it all comes down to the fact that they should want to make their customers happy so that we will come back to them next time – but right now I’m relooking my options. They will lose more money not giving us live because, after all this trouble, how many people are going to choose a Microsoft product next time. You can ask yourself – “Was it ever really their intention to release Xbox live here or was it a ploy just to get more sales” – shouldn’t this market research have been done beforehand. I don’t regret them launching it here because it has given me countless hours of fun but honestly who wants to pay for half a product?


  21. doobiwan

    March 24, 2008 at 22:11

    Same story whinge.


    Easier and cheaper than buying local, and as for “A NEW ACCOUNT every month!!!”, whatever you’re doing, you’re doing it wrong.

    Over 2500 South africans are happily playing on live and until someone releases a mass market broadband solution that supports XBL minimum spec (256Mb UP) we’ll wait for official local live.

    doobiwan’s last blog post..Evil Genius Conspiracy Theory of the Day: For the homeless …


  22. I_want_live!!!!

    March 25, 2008 at 16:46

    ok well first off i dont want to pay R750 for an accout subscription from europe instead of R350 staight from live.
    so i create a new account every time and i will till we get live!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  23. I_want_live!!!!

    March 26, 2008 at 16:22

    For the month free membership.


  24. MS SUCKS!

    June 14, 2008 at 16:53

    I am absolutely enraged with Microsoft 👿 it’s like my teamate on halo 3 just wacked me in the back. it’s honestly not fair i can see this was a ploy to increase sales. they obviously don’t care about their customers if i was smarter and was’nt as loyal to xbox i would’ve made the wise decision and bought myself a ps3. here are the reasons i got an xbox over a ps3.

    1. iwas always a fan of xbox and it’s great games
    2. i was one of millions who got caught up in the halo trilogy (I still support Bungie of course)
    3. the ps3 came out late,costed more and used up 10x as much power as a ps 2.

    as you can see i am P.Oed with ms and will jump at the chance to sell my original xbox and maybe my 360 and hop on the sony bandwagon put that in ur pipe and smoke it Micro$oft Screw you bill gates you pencil necked geek!


  25. Panther 150

    July 6, 2008 at 19:22

    MS SUCKS, I agree with what your saying. Ms wont release live for us, and therefore we are actually buying a game but only being able to use half of the said game. Halo 3 for example,…. I finished the single player and then when i wanted to get all the achievments, i couldnt,….. Y?! Because we have no live support!!!!!!! The same has happened with Test Drive unlimited, Forza 2, import tuner challenge and basically every 360 game i own!

    I have lost most of my faith in sony and the PS3, but now that my bros have a PS3 and they kick it online and play with their mates all the time, i’m seriously thinking of scrapping the Halo themed Box that i payed R3800 for, and saving for another year or two and buying a PS3, cause if we dont get LIVE, we lose half of the 360’s functionality, which frankly is quite a B###H.

    And to those people who go through the hassle of using an overseas address for your live account,i feel for you, cause i have done the same and paying a load of cash for a “phenominal online experience” that LAGS like SH!T and basically makes you want to fly to America so you can take a running jump off the top of the Empire State Building is really annoying.



  26. doobiwan

    July 7, 2008 at 10:01

    Don’t be an idiot, there are thousands of South Africans on live who always play local, you can get into a lag free game in minutes. Just go to xbox-360.co.za to meet the guys.

    doobiwan’s last blog post..The Games that made the consoles


  27. Kale

    July 21, 2008 at 10:45

    Amazing how the PS3’s sales are no as good as the 360 but we get the service free and the localisations and we can play online all free, I’ll say it again free… free-free-free. I’d gladly pay for a live account if we had the service. Also to respond to doobiwan – Have you tried adding a South African credit card lately??? And not many would be happy paying UK rates – you do realise the Exchange rate fluctuates?? Honesly Microsoft are FOS.


  28. LazySAGamer

    July 21, 2008 at 11:19

    You can always just sign up for the US account 😉

    But there is some new news in the market and local Live seems like a remote possibility again


  29. Zebluey

    September 13, 2008 at 09:54

    Thank You Microsoft – You have made up my mind… I will purchase a PS3 – happy online mayhem and buying – And have my 360 worked over (no more paying for games) – so that I don’t need to buy 360 games and not contribute to a company that could not give too shytes about the consumer – The PS3 is more powerful anyway – it can run LINUX 🙂 has blu-ray and is hell of alot quieter… :mrgreen:


  30. Wesley

    October 6, 2008 at 12:11

    I would love to get Live to be honest , with the upcoming dashboard release will be something to experience.

    I heard from a contact from Btgames that Xbox live will be available next year here in RSA well ill just get a temporary account till then i guess… sure there is some way to switch servers in cases like we are having


  31. LazySAGamer

    October 6, 2008 at 12:16

    I have heard nothing about local live but I guess now is as good a time as any to hassle Microsoft about it


  32. MS SUCKS

    October 12, 2008 at 10:37

    I agree with you Wesley, with the new avatars and other things coming with the new dash it would be cool to have xbox live only I recently discovered something a little disturbing, don’t panic now, but when i created a new account (for the free month) I never received the free month, im beginning to think MS is onto us and isn’t handing out free months anymore. Which sucks because now I can’t play with any of my friends. If anyone from microsoft is listening I have an Idea. Instead of making live in SA global, just make small local servers here that generate enough profit. I know I would be alot happier if they would at the very least create local servers in SA
    P.S. The only reason i still play xbox is because of my friends


  33. MS SUCKS

    October 12, 2008 at 10:40

    Thanks Panther Scroll down and see if you like my idea:mrgreen:


  34. Ryan 19

    October 12, 2008 at 21:49

    This really is KAK! I bought my 360 partly to play on live, and im sure thats why most of us did, little did i know that i would have to cheat the system and tell it i live in the U.S….The one month online gaming experience was great i didnt mind the lagging wasnt really fased by that..WHAT really got to me was when my online Gold membership expired and switched to silver so i got my Master card out more than ready to pay $7.99 to keep the expierence going. it didnt except my card now this pissed me off……. i look at it as if i payed full price for something i would only get half enjoyment out of………..i should have stuck with playstation


  35. MS SUCKS

    October 13, 2008 at 18:04

    Ryan if you want live as bad as I did look at dooibwan’s post with link to gamepointsnow and get it there it works, i’ve used it 😀


  36. Psyrkus

    October 17, 2008 at 11:13

    So what would be best? upgrade my pC, buy a pS2 or get an Xbox?


  37. MS SUCKS

    October 18, 2008 at 16:50

    Probalbly Pc if your not willing to pay in pounds for live


  38. SubXaero

    November 12, 2008 at 12:24

    Well I think alot has change since the thread initally started back in January and even though we not get live in
    SA and have to contend with annoying overseas based players.
    If the rumors are true and MS will unlock our accounts and
    give us the opportunity to buy memberships in ZAR and allow
    us to download content hassle free, then this is the time
    for MS to come out and say something about it.

    Sad to say the longer they leave it the more and more of
    will switch to PS3 because there are no issues when it
    comes to online gaming. I for one am tired of feeling
    like a criminal everytime I call MS Support and feel like
    a criminal because I am not suppoed to have live but I do
    because I WANT TO play against fellow gamers. Oh and having
    to pay in pounds for my subscription really bites.


  39. xgamer

    December 22, 2008 at 14:50

    there is a South African online shopping web site http://www.wantitall.co.za were you can buy a gold live membership dono how usefull it is in sa PRICE R 630 or somewere in the reagon of that price
    maybe that indicates that live is on its way or allready here


  40. LazySAGamer

    December 22, 2008 at 23:23

    Unfortunately that doesn’t mean anything. Wantitall.co.za are simply importing the codes from overseas and selling them locally.

    You can also buy subscriptions from http://www.zaps.co.za and http://www.animeworx.co.za

    I followed up with Microsoft last week about local Live and there is still no news to report on


  41. xgamer

    December 23, 2008 at 15:05

    i Heard about tricking your xbox into thinking you live in the uk or us
    how is it done?


  42. LazySAGamer

    December 23, 2008 at 21:26

    when signing up for Live it will ask you which country you live in. Just choose either US and enter an American post code (90210) or the UK and enter a British postcode (E16 2SP)

    Everything else can be set to your real details and don’t use your local credit card else you are committing fraud and may get your account locked out


  43. matt

    January 19, 2009 at 09:16

    So if my brother in the uk buys it for me there and sends me card and i use his postal code i should be able to play live against him.


  44. LazySAGamer

    January 19, 2009 at 10:15

    yes it shouldn’t be a problem at all… he doesn’t need to even send you the card, just the code that is on the card



    January 21, 2009 at 11:11

    😡 you now i dont now wat to say i just cant believe wat ms is doing to us



    January 21, 2009 at 11:18

    how must you do it then to play live on gold membersship


  47. SA T.J.H

    February 1, 2009 at 12:42




  48. LazySAGamer

    February 1, 2009 at 13:16

    Buy some prepaid cards either from your local retailer (www.zaps.co.za, http://www.evogames.co.za) or through https://www.gamepointsnow.com/


  49. SA T.J.H

    February 1, 2009 at 15:34



  50. SA T.J.H

    February 1, 2009 at 16:53



  51. SA T.J.H

    February 1, 2009 at 17:00



  52. LazySAGamer

    February 1, 2009 at 23:07

    No it is not illegal. to sign up you just need to connect your Xbox 360 to the Internet and select Join Live. Then fill in all your details and away you go


  53. matt

    February 18, 2009 at 16:30

    How much internet data cap does xbox live take up and is a 100.ooMbps conection fast enough to handle xboxlive


  54. Charles

    February 19, 2009 at 14:58

    Should u have Broadband in order to play Xbox Live? If so how do u get it? How much will it cost?


  55. Charles

    February 19, 2009 at 15:06

    If u can’t Maintain Xbox Live in SA for fu**k sake don’t sell the fu**kin thing here


  56. martin

    April 11, 2009 at 14:55

    Microsoft is bullsh*tting us. Will tell us LIVE will be here soon just to pick up the sales. Then drop us again.
    Bill Gates has a PlayStation 3 for sure!!


  57. Bardo

    April 20, 2009 at 20:18

    I’m currently playing Halo 3 online. It’s up and running but the lag frustrates me sometimes. Does anybody know of a way to knock the latency down. I’m assuming that’s my problem seeing as i have a 4Mbps line


  58. Geoff

    April 20, 2009 at 21:30

    Play games with locals – Local latency is much lower; try organising games with locals using one of the local communities. Try gamerlobby.net or xboxgaming.co.za


  59. LazySAGamer

    April 20, 2009 at 23:52

    I think you may have meant the local Xbox 360 forums (www.xbox-360.co.za/forum) but Xboxgaming.co.za is cool as well 😉


  60. Geoff

    April 20, 2009 at 23:58

    Doh! I really ought to pay attention to the warning labels on the cough syrup that advise against operating heavy machinery.

    Yes, I did indeed mean the 360 forum.


  61. Panther 150

    April 29, 2009 at 12:55

    thats a pretty awesome idea, to be quite honest, those loud mouth yanks are really annoying


  62. beukez

    August 9, 2009 at 18:48

    why god why look is there no way to get on x box live in south africa ive just moved here recently and i dont know if i should send my xbox’s over if there’s no live in south africa thats the only reason i dont play playstation man this is shit…………………………


  63. Wendy

    November 12, 2009 at 09:41

    Please can someone explain to me how to connect to
    Xbox live if SA doesn’t have the facility?
    Do you have to give an overseas address? How do you pay for this?


    • The Cure

      November 30, 2009 at 21:20

      Open a gmail account. Use that gmail account to sign up for a Windows Live ID, but during registration say that your country is USA. Pick any old city, and look up a valid ZIP code for that city. Now on your XBOX say Join Live and use that email address. There you go: you’re on XBOX Live.
      Now, to get point so you can buy games is a bit more tricky:
      Go to mspoints.co.za. Buy a USA points card. I’ve done this… it’s not a scam. You pay by EFT, not CC so quite safe. They email you a scan of the points card with a unique code. On the XBOX, buy MS points and select redeem card. Enter the number. I think they want your address for some reason: I just googled a valid address in New York (where I “stay”) and that was it. I bought Avatar Golf… pretty cool.
      Now if only SA people could publish XNA games and make some extra cash, all would be good.


  64. thurston salt

    December 15, 2009 at 03:38

    oh ok so u choose another country like usa
    but how much do u pay?and how do u pay?


    • LazySAGamer

      December 15, 2009 at 03:47

      When you sign up choose either USA or UK and complete the address details with your valid details. When asked for a postcode choose either 90210 (USA) or E162SP (UK) or any other valid postcode.

      Then head on over to http://www.evogames.co.za or http://www.mspoints.co.za and buy a Xbox 360 subscription and redeem that code.


      The cost varies depending on how long the membership is but you are looking in the region of between R170 and R370


  65. the mighty gamer

    June 14, 2010 at 20:00

    i think mircosoft is so lazy.so many countries have xbox live.this is (sorry for my language but)bullshit :angry: :angry: :angry: :angry: :angry: :angry:i am mad but im going to play xbox 360 elite and by the way to anyone who has red dead redemption its awesome i got it the first day it came out.(not braging)back on subject i just hate our mircosoft but when it comes into South Africa and this will be my face :w00t:


  66. mitas

    June 14, 2010 at 20:34

    LMFAO , most probably


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