Ensure high quality free Internet package during MCO, CFM says

It shows the commitment of telcos in understanding the challenges faced by consumers in the current situation


LOCAL telecommunications companies (telcos) should ensure that the quality of free Internet packages is at the highest level from today until the end of the Movement Control Order (MCO) on April 14.

Following the government’s collaboration with the telcos, the Communications and Multimedia Consumer Forum of Malaysia (CFM) said it lauds the effort to offer free Internet special packages to all postpaid and prepaid users during the period.

“We would like to extend our thanks to the service providers for their effort in helping our customers stay connected while staying home.

“Through the free Internet offerings, CFM hopes that consumers will continue to enjoy the best quality of service,” CFM chairman Datin Mohana Mohariff said.

Mohana also said through these initiatives, it shows the commitment of the service providers in understanding the challenges and situations faced by consumers in the current situation.

She said during network congestion, consumers might experience decrease in data speed and difficulties.

“During network congestion, consumers might experience a decrease in data speed, as well as difficulties in making phone calls or even dropped calls because the network does not have enough capacity at that time to connect the call although the phone is connected to the network,” she said.

There are several special packages that telcos offer subscribers, such as providing additional data, free data for the latest news and special portals, rebates for online top-ups, top-up assistance and free viewing offers for selected television shows.

The initiatives are intended to help customers stay home throughout the MCO to combat the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to Monash Business School’s Global Internet Pressure map, the pressure on Internet infrastructure is being felt in Malaysia, Italy, Iran, Spain and Sweden.

Monash University Malaysia associate Prof Arkendu Sen said the broadband connectivity remains stable, while an increase in cellular 4G has been noticed as educational institutions have allowed e-learning to take place.

“Stakeholders of educational institutions need to adapt to asynchronous modes of learning and measures that require less data.

“As the period of lockdown increases in Malaysia, competing uses of Internet for different industries such as entertainment, Internet shopping and educations need to be considered,” he said.

Researchers are also able to examine how well each nation’s Internet is performing given the rapid escalation in home-based entertainment, video-conferencing and online communications by focusing on regions with at least 100 confirmed Covid-19 cases.

Raschky said in most Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development countries affected by Covid-19, the Internet quality is still relatively stable.

“Regions throughout Italy, Spain and somewhat surprisingly, Sweden, are showing signs of strain,” he said.