South Asian broadband stuck in international bottleneck: study

CHENNAI, Nov 09, 2009 (LBO) – South Asian surfers get slower and less reliable broadband internet connections for every dollar spent despite compared to users in developed countries, despite ‘cheaper’ packages, researchers have found. “The US and Canada packages that we have tested are not too different to pricing to our ones but the difference is introduced in the speeds they offer,” Chanuka Wattegama, senior research manager at LIRNEasia said.

“So the speed to dollar ratio is higher in North America.”

LIRNEasia a regional telecom policy research body, has been running a study on South Asian broadband internet usage from 2007.

Asian telcos despite a lower tariff structure still makes money due to lower quality, the study has found. In countries like Bangladesh which has one of the lowest tariffs in the world average revenue per user (ARPU) is just two dollars per month.

“Costs are really driven down that’s why they can make money on five dollar revenues,” Helani Galpaya, chief operating officer at LIRNEasia said.

“Profits can be made due to lower quality of the network.”

The LIRNEasia study compares broadband packages of Asian cities such as New Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore, with North American bro