According to a report released by Akamai Technologies(the world’s largest cloud delivery platform), it is known that India ranks 89th globally in connection speeds with an average speed of 6.5Mbps, marking an 87 percent year-on-year change. In addition, we witnessed a 4Mbps broadband adoption of 42 percent in the first quarter of 2017 with an 81 percent year-on-year increase.
The internet is different in India from what it is in the US, where 60 percent have fixed lines, all converted into ADSL, DSL, and FTTH (fiber-to-the-home) so they give very fast internet speeds. Besides, 50-60 percent homes use the cable TV network, which is also used to deliver broadband. And wired broadband is always a better option. In India, only 20 million have fixed telephone lines and that too is going away slowly. Also, its quality is quite bad and it is copper and cannot take high speeds.
TRAI has been recommending the promotion of wired internet because it does not burden the spectrum. But, unfortunately, there is no fixed line and cable is not allowed in India. We have low internet penetration—350 million internet users with 512 kbps. If we increase speed to 1 Mbps, the numbers will drop. Wireless cannot provide robust bandwidth. The cost of high-speed internet is expected to be high in the initial days (like it is now), but will eventually come down as more people start to use it, as the price is mostly due to infrastructure development and maintenance.
China’s internet speed is way ahead of that of India. The reason why the internet is generally so slow in India is lack of public infrastructure. Yes, as you mentioned, the population does make things difficult by overloading the networks. Indian networks are loaded many times more than the networks in the west or countries like Japan and China, but that is not the problem which can be tackled. Because of the high population and population density, there are in fact more incentives for the government or the market to develop infrastructure, because you can cater to a large market with little investment.
Till date, the average internet speeds in the Indian homes was 2Mbps now its increased to 6.5Mbps only due to Jio revolution, which is such a shame. Countries like South Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Japan being on the same continent, have an average internet speed of 28Mbps per household. And the comparison of European countries with India should not be even thought of because there is already a big gap between its Asian counterparts. The internet is all about connectivity, and India is connected to the major internet data center hub at Singapore through submarine cables. This transit costs exceptionally high. Unless the transit cost gets low, there is no way, India is going to get cheaper internet. Price of getting content to India which involves legitimate costs of long-haul transport via Submarine cable but weird costs like ILD license, associated fees, cable landing station fees and much more.
Revolution Of Jio
Reliance Industries, chaired by Mukesh Ambani, showed what it is dealing with the richest India and Reliance. Injecting up to $29 Billion till last known data in JIO movement, It’s really something that even Government of India won’t dare to do. Revolutionizing the internet with free 4G and now lowest tariff based 4G services, the internet services market is changed forever in India. A clear corrupt practice by telecom companies came to light and that is the minimum usage and maximum benefit for each customer.
Even if we need and look for faster internet the structure of internet was never improved and neither telecom companies showed any interest in it to provide fast internet. When JIO came what we saw, a massive surge in use of the internet. With so many benefits we were kept deprived of the best internet speed for decades when the world went miles ahead. Many poor students could access the internet and get better study opportunities. Super fast internet, Good availability of internet even in rural areas, Internet-based free calling system’s introduction and many more facilities were introduced to normal people who majorly used 2g connections before and would have thought twice to buy costly data or talktime plans from telecom networks.
We now talk of 4G but it’s an Old technology in many countries they are moving ahead to other new plans. The basic point is if given India too is ready and prepared for the internet and get benefited from the revolution. But if Government don’t force the telecom operators and improve it’s own strength while focusing on more earning then how can the country benefit. But I think change started taking its first shape with JIO, I hope it stays an edge above others and keeps all other operators under pressure to improve and provide better and better with faster and faster internet connection.
As faster internet connection will improve the knowledge base of the country. Allow poor to access more material to study and understand life. Students will be benefited. Online delivery of education can be taken ahead and more literacy rate can be earned an increasing working group of people. As we are facing a huge challenge of employing nearly 1 Billion people it’s very very important to take help of super fast internet and make it available at the lowest cost to every citizen of India. I would rather advocate to include fast internet as a basic fundamental right of Indian’s, maybe then the country will see the new age revolution.