21 August 2013

Is PLDT The Root Problem on Slow Internet Connectivity?

The slow connection with ISP isn't a new issue. Poor service and slow connectivity have been there for years already. The sad part is that Philippines still way behind from other neighboring countries.Why other countries have a better, faster, & cheaper Internet connection compared to the Philippines? Are there factors consist that makes it more expensive and slower connection?
PLDT
PLDT
In an average techie, though I am progressively becoming one heck type of person, sometimes fails to notice Internet connections. Well, I rather tagged myself as a hobbyist, a researcher, a great-complainer-ISP-user, and once-upon-a-time competitor with CISCO networking(I forgot the kind of stuff, so sad). Thus, I might consider myself equipped with the technical knowledge(slight) about this topic.

The question: Is PLDT The Root Problem on Slow Connectivity? YES and NO. Yes, might be true in some other technical aspects. No, I did not want to hear the truth.

Disclaimer: This is my mere opinion only that I have learned from those expert network administrators. No Companies especially competitors of PLDT pays me to write this post. This review talks about what's wrong with the PLDT. PLDT has good points too but for this post, however, I will focus on the negative side – somewhat, the TRUTH.

Introduction

Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company(PLDT) is the largest telecommunications in the Philippines. It was established on November 28, 1928.(Yeah, it's kinda old-age though). And PLDT was already there at the peak of WORLD WAR II.

Okay, let's forward a bit and highlight few important notes.
  • In the 1970s, PLDT was being nationalized by former President Ferdinand Marcos. And it became country's telephone MONOPOLY.
  • After Marcos was overthrown, PLDT was being re-privated as Antonio Tonyboy Cojuangco as PLDT chief.
  • In 1995, there was an ACT that made PLDT de-monopolized.
  • Now, PLDT has a new CEO – Manuel V. Pangilinan replacing Cojuangco.
PLDT owns SMART COMMUNICATIONS INC, and DIGITEL(SUN CELLULAR). Though, PLDT has bought more companies I just limit it with smart and sun.

PLDT's biggest Competitors are GLOBE TELECOM and BAYAN TEL.

The ISSUE

When I stumbled and read posts on ISPs PH real facts on a gaming Forum LOL Garena PH, I was shocked with the topic. A certain foreigner guy who played LOL(League of Legends) stated that PLDT is the culprit of the slow connectivity here in the Philippines.

This foreigner lived in the Manila and for 15 years, he spent building on large scale networks in Europe. So, he is knowledgeable in the networking realm.

I shall just be named him as Miklos(this is his username in that forum).

Miklos contributed that there are 4 layers of possible lag(latency) namely:
  • User end
  • ISP
  • Interconnect
  • Server end
He shared that to measure lag, PING(ICMP echo) is not a reliable tool. "Historically, Ping is not used to measuring", he claimed. "The ping tool is used to determine if a host is alive", he added. Then, he suggested using WINMTR(http://winmtr.net/) instead, to trace route using ping.

Miklos stated that in Europe, infrastructure and government laws are very good and well-enforced respectively (PH is excused).

Hence, the most common caused of lag is on the User End. He added also that, here in the Philippines, there are more causes of lag especially on the gamers – and worst being PLDT. Lastly, he said, PLDT is INTENTIONALLY disrupting online gaming here in the Philippines. Why did he say that PLDT is the intentionally disrupting gaming?

Interconnect Law

He detailed since PLDT(SMART and SUN CELLULAR) has a dominant market share in mobile and internet market. PLDT(together with Smart and Sun Cellular) is not interested in the Interconnect Law(Interconnecting with other Telecom companies like Globe Telecom). If you are experienced delays on texting via Globe to Smart, this is probably the reason why. Moreover, PLDT does not want Globe Subscribers to be enjoyed and satisfied –  Globe subscribers will switch to SMART. So, this is the reason why there is a throttle data exchange and lag issue because PLDT limits the interconnect to other telecoms. Limiting the interconnection of other telecoms is against the law in the Philippines.

Miklos said: Money Talks, Morale Walks. These greedy government officials, sigh.

In other News

In a post here, Globe Telecom Interconnection Woes, in the test marks given by the NTC with five(5) parameters: blocked calls, dropped call rate, signal strength, signal quality, and call set-up time.

It appears that the source of the problem is the interconnection between Globe Telecom and PLDT networks.

But this interconnection issue is still subject to legal dispute.

[ Source: Globe’s interconnection woes by Alvin Capino |  http://manilastandardtoday.com/2013/02/22/globes-interconnection-woes/ ]

According to TMCNET Post, NTC and Globe Telecom proposed Local Internet Exchange(Interconnect), but PLDT rejects it.

So why is Interconnect important?

It explains like this:

Each ISP has its own connection to U.S. When a user accessed from Local ISP to another user from LOCAL ISP, the traffic data will travel first to the US and to the intended local ISP user.

If you and your friends want to meet up in a certain place(Manila), you need to meet up first in the US instead of connecting locally.

Thus, interconnect is a MUST.

[ Source: Issues with the Local Internet Exchange Proposal in the Philippines by David Sims,http://www.tmcnet.com/channels/voice-peering/articles/211574-issues-with-local-internet-exchange-proposal-the-philippines.htm ]

Conclusion
Is PLDT The Root Problem on Slow Connectivity? Perhaps YES! With the PLDT rejection of the National IX, we would still suffer yet slow and expensive internet connection.

References:

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