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How to Buy data on Telkom

How to Buy data on Telkom

When you think of the pioneers of telecommunications in South Africa, the name “Telkom” comes to the forefront. Established in 1991, Telkom SA SOC Limited has grown to be a dominant wireline and wireless telecommunications provider, catering to users in over 38 African countries.

Telkom, with its headquarters in Pretoria, began its journey in Johannesburg on 1 October 1991. It has since expanded its horizons, operating divisions such as Telkom Consumer, Telkom Mobile, and Telkom Small & Medium Business. As per the 2019-20 fiscal year data, Telkom boasts a substantial workforce, employing over 15,000 individuals.

Being a majority state-owned entity (55.3%), Telkom enjoys significant support, with the South African government owning 40.5% of its stakes. Another 14.8% is held by the Public Investment Corporation (PIC), which too is state-owned. Interested readers can explore more about Telkom’s in-depth history, expansions, market shares, and services on their official website telkom.co.za.

Before explaining how to buy data on Telkom, it is necessary to appreciate Telkom’s rich history. Established on 1 October 1991, the company has grown exponentially. The first telecommunication initiative in South Africa dates back to April 1860, marked by a single line telegraph connecting Cape Town and Simonstown. Fast forward to the 1960s, South Africa had connections with 72 nations and witnessed over 28,800 outgoing international calls annually.

In 1994, under Telkom’s guidance and in partnership with Vodafone, South Africa ventured into mobile operations, birthing Vodacom. Vodacom’s subscriber base burgeoned, currently boasting over 45M users with a consistent average revenue per user.

The monopoly Telkom held was challenged by the advent of Neotel, and mobile operators like Vodacom, MTN, and Cell-C. Still, its extensive service range and unparalleled history have ensured it remains an industry leader.

Methods to Buy Data from Telkom

  1. Telkom Mobile App
  2. Telkom Website (Self-Service Portal)
  3. Telkom USSD Codes (*180#)
  4. Buying Telkom data With Airtime
  5. Purchasing Telkom Data for Another Number (Data Transfer)
  6. Mobile Banking Apps
  7. Telkom Retail Stores
  8. Authorized Telkom Dealers and Retailers

How to Buy Telkom Data with Airtime

  • Purchase an airtime voucher.
  • Dial *188# followed by the voucher card number.
  • Press the call dial to recharge your airtime.
  • Dial *180# and select your preferred bundle package.
  • Once the transaction is successful, Telkom will send a confirmation message.

How to Buy Telkom Data for Another Number

  • Dial *180#.
  • Choose the ‘transfer data’ option.
  • Enter the recipient’s phone number and select the desired data amount.
  • Confirm the transaction and await a success notification.

How to Buy Data on Telkom Self-Service Portal

  • Register or log in to Telkom’s self-service portal.
  • Navigate to the ‘load data’ option and follow the prompts.
  • Alternatively, purchase airtime from the portal and convert it into internet bundles.

How to Purchase Telkom Data on Mobile Banking Apps

  • Access your preferred mobile banking app.
  • Opt for the ‘buy airtime’ feature.
  • Choose Telkom as the network and input the relevant phone number.
  • Determine the amount and finalize the purchase.

How to Buy Data on the Telkom App

  • Download and access the Telkom Mobile app.
  • Tap on ‘load data’, select a suitable data package, and specify the quantity.
  • Conclude the purchase to promptly receive your data.

How to Buy Telkom Prepaid LTE Data

  • Disable mobile data and connect to an available Wi-Fi network.
  • Launch the Telkom app and navigate to the main dashboard.
  • Click on your account and then tap on the ‘buy’ option.
  • Choose ‘data bundles’ and then select ‘LTE/LTE-A once off’.
  • Select your preferred bundle and complete the payment process.

How to Convert Airtime to Data on Telkom

For users wishing to convert their Telkom airtime into internet bundles:

  • Dial *180# and select your desired data bundle package.
  • For converting airtime into data for another number, dial *180# and follow the prompts.

Other Telkom Services and Offerings

Telkom offers a broad spectrum of products and services, including ADSL retail services, provided via their ISP Telkom Internet, and through Telkom Wholesale to other operators. As per the 2008 annual report, Telkom is the country’s largest fixed-line broadband provider, having 412,190 subscribers.

Furthermore, Telkom’s mobile 3G services have been available since 2008. It also ventured into music streaming, partnering with Tencent Africa to launch Telkom Music in 2021, a service now available via the Telkom Music Powered By JOOX app in South Africa.


In conclusion, Telkom, with its rich history and vast offerings, has positioned itself as a go-to telecommunications provider in South Africa. The USSD codes, such as *180# for buying data for your line or *180# for another line, have made purchasing data on Telkom user-friendly.

Furthermore, with its strategic investments, like the acquisition of Business Connexion in 2015 and its significant presence in the IT market, Telkom is poised to offer unparalleled services to its users.

For more details and updates on services, offerings, and more, consider visiting the official Telkom website or referencing resources like Wikipedia.

Remember, staying connected in today’s digital world is not a luxury but a necessity. And with Telkom, you are assured of reliable and seamless connectivity.


Telkom, with its storied history and unrivaled market presence, continues to be a beacon for affordable and reliable data services. From its inception to its present-day status, Telkom has revolutionized the way South Africans communicate and access the internet.

The methods delineated above, from buying data using airtime to employing the self-service portal, not only answer “how to buy data on Telkom” but also showcase the company’s commitment to user convenience.

As technology advances and the internet continues to be interwoven into our daily lives, it’s essential to align with providers like Telkom that not only offer competitive rates but also a seamless data purchasing experience.

Key Takeaways

  • Telkom has a rich history as South Africa’s leading telecommunication entity.
  • It offers multiple avenues on how to buy data, from USSD codes to mobile apps.
  • Telkom’s USSD codes (*180# for personal and *180# for another line) remain central for quick data transactions.


  1. “Telkom SA SOC Limited.” Wikipedia. Link
  2. “How South Africa went from its first telegraph service in 1859 to 100Mbps fibre in 2015.” My Broadband, 12 August 2015. Link
  3. “The first-ever cellphones sold in South Africa.” My Broadband, 6 April 2014. Link
  4. “Electronic Communications Act [No. 36 of 2005].” Government of South Africa. PDF
  5. “Openserve finally joins ISPA after 25 years.” TechCentral. Link
  6. Thabiso Mochiko. “Competition Tribunal approves Telkom’s Business Connexion deal.” Biz Community, 5 August 2015. Link
  7. “Telkom CEO’s resignation a ‘calamity’.” IOL, 18 January 2011. Link
  8. “Dossiers plunge Telkom into crisis.” TechCentral. Link
  9. “Telkom and JOOX launch new music streaming app Telkom Music.” News24. Link
  10. “Telkom partners with Tencent to launch new streaming music service.” Tech Central. Link
  11. “High cost of Internet access is a major point of consumer frustration in South Africa.” Jane Duncan, The South African Civil Society Information Service, 11 April 2012. Link
  12. Bruce Whitfield. “SA’s biggest blunders.” News24, 12 May 2011. Link
  13. “S.Africa’s Telkom agrees to R200 mln internet fine.” David Dolan, Reuters, 14 June 2013. Link

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