Thursday, September 24, 2015
Some experience from preliminary connectivity assesments
I have been currently given the responsibility of assessing Internet infrastructure in the project areas of Changunarayan and Panauti . Evaluation of mobile Internet connectivity is a part of my role as a technologist. I noticed an interesting gossip about poor telecom service quality at Changunarayan – people believed the poor service quality of telecom was due to signal interference between towers of different network providers. Some of the local residents were extremely furious against the installation of a tower by WorldLink, which is an Internet service provider but not a telecom operator. I could not flatly deny such interference, because though this should not happen theoretically, malfunctioning of the towers or improper parameter settings can still lead to such undesired effects. I did not have any specific device to test signal interference.
Today I performed tests at Panauti. So far the results indicate service quality of Ncell is superior to that of Nepal Telecom, in both areas. At Changunarayan, signal quality of Ncell was poor. I came to know from the local people that there were no towers of Ncell at Changunaryan; the signal should have come from towers at Sankhu and other nearby locations. In contrast, there were about eight Nepal Telecom (NTC) towers, but services quality was embarrassing. Though NTC’s signal strength was in an acceptable range, service access delays and call drops were high, and mobile internet connectivity was terribly poor. Surprisingly, quality of Internet provided by Ncell was still better than that of NTC.
My experience shows wherever Ncell’s signal quality is better, its Internet service is better. This is not true with NTC. But the managing director of NTC claims
"In the present competitive scenario, Nepal Telecom is the only service provider that has been providing rich and quality network services at affordable price throughout the country. " (www.ntc.net.np)
The claim appears as a joke. It is a serious question why NTC, a government owned company having a superb infrastructure, is not providing quality service.