How Filipino online users reacted to Marcos’ comments on internet speed improvement

July 24, 2023 - 8:10 PM
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Internet users
Unidentified people using a desktop computer. (Pixabay/ StartupStockPhotos)

Did the country’s internet speed really improve?

Some Filipinos disagreed with President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. who proudly said that the Philippines’ internet speed has improved compared to last year.

The chief executive in his second State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday, July 24 reported that the internet speed has improved “because of system upgrades.”

READ: FULL TEXT: Marcos’ 2023 State of the Nation Address

He said that as of June, the country’s fixed broadband speed ranked 47th out of 180 countries.

“This ranking is 11 places higher than it was in last year,” Marcos added.

He also said that the country’s mobile internet speed ranks at 83 out of 142 countries, adding that it is “eight places higher than it was last year.”

“There will be more improvements, as our internet infrastructure undergoes further upgrades. Early this year, Starlink went live in the Philippines, now providing high-speed satellite broadband connectivity,” Marcos continued.

“Our National Fiber Backbone and Broadband ng Masa projects will also deliver high connectivity and high-speed internet. We are prioritizing geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas,” he added.

“The DICT has been directed to consolidate all these digitalized government services into the eGov PH app, to establish the National Government Portal and the Philippine Business Databank, to improve the internet speed in our country,” the president continued.

DICT refers to the Department of Information and Communications Technology, the agency responsible for providing access to vital ICT info structure and services.

Meanwhile, some Filipinos on Facebook and Twitter disagreed with Marcos’ comments and shared their experiences while using the internet.

“Kelan pa po? ‘Di ko ramdam e,” a Facebook user said.

“Paki sampal po nag-sabi [niyan] try [niyo] pumunta sa mga probinsiya [nang] malaman [niyo] at ma-stress [kayo] sa [sobrang] bilis ng internet, tapos ‘yung mga telco din ang bilis maubos internet data kahit loading,” another Facebook user wrote.

A Twitter user claimed they did not get a job because of the speed of their internet.

“I didn’t get a job simply because my supposedly 40 Mbps internet that I’m paying for monthly is faulty and is in fact, only 20 Mbps,” the user wrote.

A 40 Mbps internet speed is considered a fast one that can support a wide range of online activities.

Meanwhile, a person using a 20 Mbps internet speed can have up to ten gaming sessions but at low bandwidth. It is not recommended for two to three internet users connected to the same Wi-Fi.

Another Twitter user claimed that their internet connection is unstable or fluctuating.

“Pawala-wala nga internet dito sa amin e. Kahit mobile data, wala,” the user wrote.

Mobile data is the internet delivered to mobile devices such as smartphones over a wireless cellular connection.

Another Twitter user said that the credit should have gone to businesses that are the ones providing internet service.

“Thanks to Globe and Smart. Maka-credit grab na naman,” the user partly commented, citing two major telecommunications firms in the country providing internet service.

The DICT said that the country has seen a “continued rise in fixed broadband and mobile internet speeds during the first half of 2023.”

Citing what they said was Ookla‘s latest Speedtest Global Index report, the Philippines’ median fixed broadband download speed has increased from 87.13 Mbps in December 2022 to 92.84 Mbps in June 2023.

“Mobile internet download speed has also improved from last December’s 24.12 Mbps to this June’s 26.98 Mbps. With these statistics, the Philippines ranks 47th for fixed broadband and 83rd for mobile internet out of over 140 countries worldwide,” the DICT said in a report.

The agency added that based on Ookla’s report, the median download and upload speeds in the Philippines had experienced substantial quarterly growth.

Internet speed in the Southeast Asian country is notoriously slow compared to its neighbors like Singapore.