WiMAX To Roll-Out in Malaysia As Promised (Aug 2008)

The WiMAX Forum WiMAX ArchitectureImage via Wikipedia It was more than a year ago when WiMAX first surfaced into the media of Malaysia.

During those periods, it was all about who should have the licenses ?... That debate is long over.

Malaysian have been waiting and waiting... occasionally distracted by the general election, rising crude oil prices, WCIT and Olympic games. But those are short-term hot happenings as compared to the issues of telecommunication facilities for all Malaysian. We are still not getting good enough service coverage; many would agree.

PiKOM has invested efforts to do their parts, by convincing the government that targets are not realistic (on July 2007) that government now expects 50% of the households to have broadband by 2010 and a few months later commented again that WiMAX effort was losing momentum (on April 2008).

So, things are moving.

YTL E-Solutions, Green Packet, REDtone all have had press releases that promised WiMAX will be launched by end of Aug 2008. Yeah, that is good, finally we get to see something and since the HSBB (High Speed Broadband) project by TM has been lingered with uncertainties.

But interestingly, the bigger subject is that how effective are all these guys going to contribute to the national broadband plan ? The answer can be found at this blog entry (Dec 2007) about QucomHaps Malaysia.

Check out the commentaries (never-mind those that are semi-relevant) where it took me out of bewilderment by an anonymous industrial expect who commented that non of these guys can contribute much to the national broadband plan, because they are driven by commercial values.

Let me republish the content here...

    STREAMYX (ADSL) just cannot serve everything nationwide. Just ask the suppliers.

    3G LOCATIONS just cannot serve everything either. 3G has taken more than 6 years to roll out not much (nowhere even close to nationwide) service coverage.It could take 10 or 20 more years (like GSM!) to roll out enough nationwide service coverage locations.Maybe it will never be affordable to do so anyway.

    WiMax LOCATIONS certainly cannot serve everything (maybe will not even serve anything some experts think!)The reality is that WiMAX provides zero service coverage in Malaysia today, even though it gained the full support of Intel and expert others for years.
    There is no projected timescale for when nationwide WiMAX service coverage will ever be available.
    If and when it does happen then it will probably be the Haps people that do it!

    GSM took over 25 years to roll out nationwide service coverage it is worth remembering. 25 years! And provides no useful internet access.

    SATELLITE gives nationwide service coverage no problem. After taking 5-7 year programs to build and launch them.But the problem is that almost nobody other than commercial and public customers can afford these satellite broadband services anyway. So again that's completely useless for the rakyat!

    And you can't receive any satellite signal anyway to or from a normal Nokia, Sony etc mobile phone.

    'Fibre to the home/office' might happen one day, I agree. But it will likely take 10-15 years to cover all buildings nationwide. And it may not be affordable for everyone even when the service becomes available.

    Even 10-15 years from now, when service might be nationwide, it would still offer NO internet access at all whenever you are outside and away from buildings.

    So this is the internet service coverage reality in Malaysia and all the possible choices.

    80% of buildings in Malaysia today have NO broadband internet access or services. 80%! Similarly 80% (or more) of the populated working areas outside of buildings have no internet coverage.

    The social and economic retardation and the social divisiveness dangers caused by this challenge is very serious, for everyone.

    Many of Malaysia's neighbours have already overtaken us in terms of internet access and service.

    New business and increased educational and other advancements blossoming.
    Other neighbours also already have plans to overtake us on many important fronts.

    What's the big rush then for an almost 'instant nationwide service solution to all-buildings and to all-mobile-locations' from Haps?

    Is it because only by having Haps internet access and service nationwide we can we even hope to compete as a nation?

    Almost no matter how long it took the Haps guys to deliver service they would still likely have done it way before any of the other possible technologies.

    All the other technologies took many years longer to roll out their own types of service coverage.

So, this is interesting time, let's see how the WiMAX will live up to the expectation.

Finally, in some countries, BitTorrent throttling is illegal, don't you agree ? A software has been created to measure the actual speed of your Internet connection, it is called Switzerland. Check it out dude, before you purchase new service!

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