Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Ibrahim Ali's s*#^ @ broadband speed - STILL ON IBRAHIM ALI'S S*#^ 3x

Ibrahim Ali's s*#^ @ broadband speed

On the way to work a couple of weeks ago, I received an SMS about the launch of Telekom Malaysia’s UniFi High Speed Broadband service.
Finally, I thought. No more hours spent twiddling my thumbs waiting for YouTube videos to load.
Watching that red bar slowly inch forward is, to me, the most irritating thing in the world.
Well, to be honest it is kind of a tie between that and filling out tax returns which I would have to get around to doing soon.
Anyway, a few days ago it took me 25 minutes to load, via YouTube, the Al Jazeera video with the now infamous Ibrahim Ali interview. The great brown hope was asked whether affirmative action policies giving Malays, regardless of their income, advantages in housing, education and employment makes Malaysia a racist country.
His answer was, and I quote, "If they say that oh we feel that we are second class citizen, don’t talk s**t la I tell you. You see. Don’t talk s**t. I... I... I... I... I... I... I... I... I repeat, don’t talk s**t three time. We the Malays have forgive a lot of thing to these people. We have sacrificed a lot of our interest."
No prizes for guessing the winner of the 2010 Zainuddin Maidin We Have Erection in Malaysia Award for the Best Interview and Best English categories.
I... I... I... digress.
Back to my High Speed Broadband adventure. I rushed into the office and eagerly surfed for information about initial areas covered by the service and the packages offered. Happily, I discovered that my area was among those covered.
Excitedly, I called the number on the screen. A young chap answered. I gave him my address. He checked the system. Wait for it. Let me give you a rough verbatim.
"I’m sorry Sir, your area cannot" he says.
"Why not?" I ask.
"Because, actually your area got the thing, but there is a technical problem so only when can already, I will call you" he replies.
We went on to have a long conversation about the packages on offer and so on. His jovial nature and grasp of the information about the packages available was about the only credit to TM in this conversation.
Why in the world would you launch something if it is not entirely functional in all the areas that you claim it is functional in? Why launch the service within selected areas of selected areas?
Well at least I have Streamyx at home unlike my friend who just moved into a new development in the Summit USJ area. Last week, he popped into the TM shop nearby and enquired about getting Streamyx installed.
A young man dealt with his application. He gave the man his address. The man checked the system. Wait for it. Let me give you a rough verbatim.
"Your place cannot," the man said.
"Why?" my friend asked.
"Tempat you takde port. So tak boleh," said the man.
"What do you mean takde port? What is a port?" asked my friend further.
"Port is port. Takde port. So cannot," repeated the man.
My poor friend then drove home only to find out from his condominium management that a team of technicians from TM had recently installed Streamyx for some other residents there. The management even had the number for the TM technician that had installed the Streamyx.
Confused, my friend drove all the way back to the TM shop and asked the same person what the whole issue was about. He even persuaded the person to speak to the TM technician that had carried out the said earlier installation.
After much talk, the guy at the TM shop puts the phone down, looks at my friend and says with a serious face: "Ya la, ya la ini port system kena update dulu. Lepas itu kita hantar orang buat survey."
I have no idea when TM will call me back with the good news that the High Speed Broadband is active in my place. I also have no idea when the so-called survey will be conducted at my friend’s place of residence.
But the point is this. We really do need to get our act together when it comes to broadband services. And we should really start by ensuring that every place in the country is given quality access to the World Wide Web.
The only way to do this is to first ensure that all necessary "surveys" are done as soon as possible.
Next, we should ensure that the prices are not too prohibitive. It was reported that in Singapore, a 1Gbps (gigabit per second) line costs RM200 a month while TM’s UniFi High Speed Broadband costs RM249 a month for a 20Mbps (megabit per second) line which is in fact 5 times slower.
Besides, the even slower 5Mbps line from TM costs RM149 a month or RM1788 a year. How many of us can spare that kind of money?
I hope TM and the Government reduces the UniFi subscription rates. This will go a long way towards achieving the Government’s high broadband penetration target.
Failure to do so may result in the whole exercise going the way of the UniFi blimp on the official UniFi website front page. The blimp appears at the top-left of the screen and slowly floats downwards across the screen and finally ends up disappearing into a blue space that resembles the sea. (BY DAVID D. MATHEW/MySinchew)

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