May 29, 2009

BBC UK Broadband research, Prothom Alo and we, people of Bangladesh

About three million homes in the UK have broadband speeds of less than two megabits per second (2Mbps) according to research commissioned by the BBC. The government has promised to provide all homes in the UK with speeds of at least 2Mbps by 2012. The research revealed that so-called notspots are not limited to rural communities, with many in suburban areas and even streets in major towns. "We had assumed that these notspots were in remote parts of the countryside. That may be where the most vocal campaigners are but there is a high incidence of them in commuter belts," said Alex Salter, co-founder of broadband website SamKnows

"In some cases people aren't able to shop online, aren't able to view certain websites or use social media applications such as Facebook and Twitter and they can't watch the BBC's iPlayer," said Mr Salter. To get speeds of 2Mbps or more, homes need to be 4km or less from an exchange. The Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform, charged with delivering the Digital Britain report, has acknowledged that current definitions of broadband are "outmoded" in a world where some countries enjoy speeds of up to 100Mbps.

These are some of the lines I quoted from BBC website. Regarding this issue The Daily Prothom Alo, one of the leading Bangla news paper in Bangladesh published an article on May 28, 2009. The reporter basically translated some major portions of the article from BBC website. To complement her, I also included almost the same part. But you will be shocked to see that, in the article at least five times speed is wrongly interpreted as megabyte Per second rather megabits per second. All of us know about Broadband speed measurement so I don’t want to discuss it again. But we don’t expect such wrong information from Prothom Alo. Many readers may not have any technical knowledge and this type of information will just mislead them about broadband speed. I think the news paper even didn’t realize it because so far no correction notice is published.

Now coming to broadband speed in Bangladesh, while people of UK are not happy with around 2 Mbps, we are still crying for throughput. While their regulatory has acknowledged current
broadband standard as backward, our regulatory is inexplicably asked WiMAX provider to provide only 128 kbps. Bandwidth price here is too high and so far no measure has taken to reduce price. Looks like we are still in the Dark Age compare to others.

Consumers are waking slowly but surely; don’t know when our policy makers will.


Anonymous said...

I don't understand, How on earth prothom alo can publish such article. I think reporter may not know how to calculate Bandwidth and thats why she repeatedly perform the same mistake.

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