Browsing all articles tagged with broadband

WiMax Laggers Fined – MCMC Finally Takes Some Action!

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I was pleasantly surprised to read in a local daily today that 3 local WiMax operators have been imposed fines (ranging from RM200,000 to RM1.9 million) for not meeting the target of 25% population coverage by end-March 2009. Personally, I think these fines are long overdue and perhaps even a little too lenient for some of the operators that have yet to roll out any service two years after the receiving the license! Until these operators start rolling out their wireless services, the competition amongst the existing operators will continue to be limited.

With limited competition, I feel that the inferior quality of existing broadband service in Malaysia will continue to the detriment of consumers. At the moment, I already subscribe to the services provided by the two leading broadband providers – both of which I find severely lacking in terms of speed and reliability. Despite my displeasure with them, I have no choice but to continue my subscription for a very simple reason – the lack of any viable alternatives. Yes, I could subscribe to the mobile broadband service via HSDPA provided by the telcos (which I already do) but in reality these are not viable alternatives given their inferior connection speed and comparable lack of reliability.

So, these fines IMO are a step in the right direction. Hopefully, it will spur all operators to improve their services. Until then and unless anyone of you has any bright ideas for alternative broadband solutions, I guess I will have to grit my teeth and continue to suffer in (relative) silence :)

P1 going to Singapore

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I just read this article (P1 article) on Green Packet, the company that provides the P1 WiMax broadband services in Malaysia. They have entered into a deal to purchase from Pacnet its facilities-based operator license and corresponding wireless broadband access spectrum rights. Pacnet is one of 6 companies in Singapore with a license and spectrum rights to provide wireless broadband services.

Apparently, one of the selling points for future customers of P1 in Singapore is the additional perk of Internet roaming, given Green Packet’s existing P1 WiMax services in Malaysia. As an existing disgruntled P1 customer in Malaysia, my first thought of their plan is that my service is going to get worse – if that’s even possible seeing as my network connection to P1 these days ranges from very slow to non-existent.

Since I signed up 6 months ago, the service has essentially deteriorated after each month to its current sorry state. Calls to their customer service has been met with promises of upgrading work in progress and partial fee waivers – a small consolation but pointless for people who depend on the Internet to earn a living.

A word of advise to my Singaporean cousins – make sure you know what you’re getting into before you sign up!

Broadband Services Revisited

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Finally, there’s some decent news for Malaysian broadband users. In the Budget 2010 speech given by the Minister of Finance / Prime Minister yesterday, not only will the implementation of high-speed broadband (HSBB) be expedited, consumers will be allowed to claim tax relief on any subscription paid for broadband services. A tax relief of up to RM500 per year can be claimed from 2010 onwards and will continue until 2012.

Most people subscribed to a broadband service should be able to enjoy the full RM500 tax relief – although some subscribed to limited usage packages (e.g. those on the Streamyx 384 kbps package) may enjoy a lower amount. This means a maximum total tax relief of RM1,500 over the next 3 years – it may not be a substantial sum for most but it is still some consolation for us long suffering Malaysian broadband consumers :D .


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