Salleh fires latest salvo in 'Internet speed' war of words with Kit Siang

  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 29 Sep 2015

PETALING JAYA The latest salvo in the war of words between Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak (pic) and DAP advisor Lim Kit Siang has been fired, with the Communications and Multimedia Minister maintaining that the focus of Internet services in Malaysia is on speed, coverage and affordability.

"In Malaysia, our Internet penetration is 67% of the population. We are still below South Korea (92%), Brunei (75%), Japan (86%), Singapore (80%), and Taiwan (80%). However, we are definitely ahead of the rest of Asia," said Salleh in a blog post on his blog on Tuesday.

Salleh added that the Government wanted to ensure that at least 95% of Malaysians will have access to the Internet by 2020, saying that the average Internet penetration for the whole of Asia is only 38.8% and 73.5% for the whole of Europe, while North America is ahead of the rest of the world at 87.9%.

"We also want to ensure that at least 50% of urban areas and 20% of rural areas have broadband speeds of 100 Mbps. As I said yesterday (Monday), we are planning to give 95% of Malaysians Internet service by 2020, which is only five years from now, and the Malaysian Communications And Multimedia Commission plans to spend about RM9bil by 2020 to achieve this," said Salleh.

Lim, in a blog post Tuesday pointed out that the issue was that high Internet speeds in Malaysia were too costly when compared to other countries, adding that it was Salleh's task as Minister to make them affordable.

In response, Salleh said that the Akamai Second Quarter 2015 State Of The Internet Report did not take into account that entry-level packages for fixed broadband offered by Telekom Malaysia started at 386 kbps, adding that when 71% of the users are in the entry-level 386 kbps category, then the overall average would be low.

"Therefore, due to the high number of subscribers for these entry-level packages (71%), this had the effect of pulling down the average speeds measured by Akamai.

"For example, 87% of High Speed Broadband subscribers are for the lowest speed five Mbps package and there are hardly any takers for the higher speed packages of 30 and 50 Mbps.

"So while I do not disagree with what Lim Kit Siang or Akamai said, we need to also take into consideration how the average speed of the Internet is calculated," said Salleh.

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