Why is the Internet Slow in the Philippines

According to an index of internet speed, South Korea has the fastest internet in the world. The index also takes on quality, pricing, and consumer satisfaction. All these data are available over at netindex.com.
top countries fastest internet
Top 10 Countries with Fastest Internet

The Philippines comes in as 133rd in a list of 169 countries with a depressing average of 1.68 Mbps. And that's seemingly an overstatement as many users here are surfing at speeds way below that average while South Korea, our Asian neighbor, takes the top position with a whopping average of 32.03 Mbps.
south korea internet providers
According to ISP planet, South Korea has 29 competing internet service providers. The heavy competition forces the firms to lower their prices or improve their quality of service or both. Now compare that to us where there are only 6 brands, 3 owned just by one person (MVP, owner of PLDT and Smart recently acquired Sun Cellular), and some brands providing their service only in a limited number of areas.
internet providers philippines
ISP brands in the Philippines

The government should really step back and ease the burdens on players who want to enter this market and allow this industry to flourish. I don't know the exact regulations or red tapes here in the Philippines in this market, but surely if we become more business-friendly, lower the taxes, streamline or abolish bureaucracies like the NTC, and minimize requirements and fees to enter the market, both foreign and local investors would be very willing to compete against the current brands that are providing depressing internet speeds and frustrating customer service.

But of course, fast internet is nothing without civil liberties. For instance, China has an average of 4.54 Mbps but I will never trade my slow internet for their faster yet heavily regulated and restricted internet.

There was a time when I was personally averaging at around 3.5 Mbps (you can check yours over at speedtest.net). I even have a screenshot when my torrent download speed reached 579 kbps. Now I'm back to around 0.8 Mbps. It's very frustrating and this is actually what inspired me to write this article. Aside from that, customer support is also very poor.

Faster internet will mean better education, more efficient businesses, more attractive markets to foreign investment, better economy, and of course more informative posts from this blog.


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11 comments:

  1. Harry, minor correction. Phils' rank is 125th, not 133rd, and average speed of 1.98, not 1.68 Mbps. Thanks for this blog info, very useful.

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  2. Oh wow, I think this is because their index is updated regularly (they can easily do this because they base their data on results taken from speedtest.net).

    This shows that we have moved ranking since I wrote the blog post. I swear when I was writing it we were 133rd and the average was 1.98 O:

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  3. it's so frustrating i searched for internet providers in the us they offer around 6mbps for just 15$ a month that way cheaper than the 999 pesos a month for 1mbps that we have here in the philippines

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  4. That's just so depressing. T_____T

    http://sinosicat.com

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  5. Mukhang pera mga ISP satin. Yung 3 mbps na plan P1999 nung isang carrier, at the same price may 100 Mbps ka na sa Europe or UK, haist...di pa nga aabot sa advertised speed tapos pag nagreklamo ka talagang ganun daw if 60% lang daw ng advertised and nasasagap mo, normal daw yun...naka Pinas talaga 0_0.

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  6. Mukha talagang pera. Walang silang pakialam sa mga subscribers. 2012 na parang naka-dial-up pa rin tayo. 100 Mbps dito 20k PHP imba!

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  7. Update: Rank 150 na ang Pilipinas

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  8. bat dito sa lugar namen, yung halaga ng 1mbps na nirereklamo nyo, 2mbps dito. hanapin nyo koooo. :) and i have never been satisfied like this. f*ck globe f*ck smart f*ck sun. The smartest thing you have to decide when thinking of getting an internet connection is....... Don't f*cking get a BROADBAND CONNECTION!!!! sorry for my language. I just felt it would sound better. lol. anyway. cable internet is still the best. lalo na pag malapit ka sa ISP. ewan, baka pamahiin lang yon. pero anyway. my 2mbps connection is living up to it's name. actually, more than pa nga sa pinromise na speed yung nakkuha ko. basta. always remember. wag masyadong mag risk sa "Wireless" wireless means more ping.

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  9. /sigh...

    wala talagang kwenta ang mga ISP dito sa Pinas... kahit anung brand, maraming problema at tama ka po sa sinabi mo na very poor ang customer service dito sa atin.

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  10. Why our internet sucks...Big Time.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ilMx7k7mso

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