The Gist


/ 29 October 2021

When the isolation started in 2020 the whole world froze. But still, people found ways to cope with the pandemic despite the physical and mental strains it brought. And when it became apparent that it would still take time before we return to normal, a new reality opened right before us in order for us to go on with our lives — and thus the new normal began.

And whether you work from home or you attend online classes, this will be and still is our new reality. While it has been a year since this all started we now face one common enemy — slow internet connection. Regardless if you’re part of the working class or a student, having slow internet has become the bane of our existence since our shift to the new normal. With every single person depending on the internet to manage their business, to do their jobs, or even attend class, having fast internet access has almost become a basic necessity.

But let’s face it! The Philippines is not really known for its fast internet. In fact, the Philippines ranked 103rd for fixed broadband and 110th for mobile in the Ookla Speedtest Global Index last November 2020. This ranking is the representation of just how much of a struggle it is for workers or students to go on with their daily lives in this pandemic.

However, looking at a more recent ranking this 2021 the Philippines now ranked 63rd out of 180 countries for fixed broadband and 73rd out of 140 countries in mobile. Even in the ASEAN ranking, the Philippines seems to be doing quite well as the country ranked 5th out of 10 countries. With an average download speed of 58.73Mbps for fixed broadband and 31.97Mbps for mobile, the Philippines has risen to the challenge of catering to the need of its people for faster connectivity.

But why does it seem like the Philippines is still lagging when it comes to internet speed? And why is the country still considered to have one of the slowest internet connections? Well, that is because despite its steady rise in the ranking, and yes, our internet speed is faster than last year, but the Philippines is considered to have a high cost and low service quality when it comes to internet connection.

To put in perspective, Thailand and Singapore are in the top five countries with fast internet for fixed broadband with Singapore leading the ranking in the top spot while Thailand is 5th (this is still according to Ookla Speedtest Global Index). With 262.20Mbps and 221Mbps respectively, the fixed broadband plans in these two countries cost about the same as in the Philippines according to a report by The World Bank.