NTC starts measuring ISPs’ broadband speeds

By , on September 19, 2015

(Photo from Flickr/PlanetofSuccess)
(Photo from Flickr/PlanetofSuccess)

MANILA – The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) on Thursday conducted its pilot testing on the fixed broadband speeds of local ISPs (Internet service providers).

NTC deputy commissioner Delilah Deles showed the newly acquired JDSU Handheld Services Testers (HST) attached to broadband routers of Bayan Telecommunications (Bayantel), Globe Telecom, Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT), and Sky Cable Corporation’s SkyBroadband.

“ISPs are monitored from different locations in Metro Manila at different times of the week. During each testing, we use our JDSU [HST], which cost about a million pesos each, to monitor and measure the speed of fixed broadband,” Deles told reporters.

The JDSU-HST measured both upstream and downstream metrics, particularly the upload and download speeds, consistency, ping time and data packet.

Starting up the units, the measuring session was started. It then tested consumer plans: Bayantel’s  up to 2 mbps downstream/1 mbps upstream, Globe’s up to 3 mbps downstream/3 mbps upstream, PLDT’s up to 3 mbps downstream/1 mbps upstream and SkyBroadband’s up to 3 mbps downstream/1 mbps upstream.

After the pilot testing, all ISPs were within the standard parameters of 256 kbps – the standard of the International Telecommunications Union.

However, of the four ISPs, Bayantel registered the slowest broadband speed of 563 kbps advertised with ‘up to 2 mbps downstream.’

“Bayantel… showed the slowest speed so they have to diagnose their network and improve it before the actual testing next month,” NTC director Edgardo Cabarios said in an interview, ordering the telecom firm to inform its subscribers of its actual Internet speed.

Bayantel, for its part, asserted that the results of NTC’s pilot testing of measuring broadband speed may not be accurate.

“The data presented from the pilot NTC test of measuring the Internet speed of fixed broadband speed of service providers were the initial results taken from a test environment, located at a specific location and point in time. There is reason to believe that it may not present an accurate reading of our service to our customers,” the telecom firm said in a statement.

“There are a host of other factors – technical and non-technical in nature – that could very well affect the speed of Internet service like latency error, signal loss, proximity of network equipment, etc.,” the statement continued.

“In our continuous effort to improve our services, we will be working closely with the NTC to validate these results and will cooperate to identify improvement areas to better serve our customers.”