KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 28, 2015:
DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang came under criticism for complaining about slow Internet speed while not knowing the actual speed available to Malaysians.
Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak said Malaysians actually prefer to pay less for slower Internet speeds instead of forking out more money for higher speeds.
He pointed out that about 71% of Malaysian Internet users prefer the slower Streamyx broadband package that offered speeds of between 384 Kbps and 1 Mbps.
Salleh said in his blog today: “Even though higher broadband speeds are available, the majority of customers subscribe to the cheaper and thus slower packages.
“In Singapore, Thailand, etc, the minimum speeds range from 4-5 Mbps. In Malaysia it is only 384 Kbps. Of course, we can also do this for Malaysia.
“We can increase the minimum Internet speed to say 5Mbps and force Malaysians to buy this higher-speed package.
“But that would mean the cost would be higher as well and Internet usage will be available to only those who can afford to pay the higher cost.”
Salleh, at the same time, refuted claims by Lim that he (Salleh) appeared to be only interested in his blog and Facebook, busy with his new toy and Cabinet assignment to be Najib’s chief propagandist to fight for the Prime Minister’s political survival.
Lim had also said yesterday that Salleh has been conspicuously unconcerned about Malaysia’s poor Internet infrastructure.
Salleh said it was estimated that if Britain wanted to improve the communications infrastructure, it would need to spend about RM200 billion as at the moment the United Kingdom is ranked 16th in Europe in terms of Internet speed.
He added that the question being asked in the UK was whether Internet users were prepared to foot the bill, on top of the RM1,400 billion the country needed to pay for the other infrastructure like energy, roads and railway.
He said the whole idea in Malaysia was speed, coverage and affordability.
He wanted to ensure that by 2020 at least 95% of Malaysians have access to the Internet, adding that he also wanted to ensure that at least 50% of urban areas and 20% of rural areas had broadband speed of 100 Mbps by that date.