Enterprise

Philippine Internet turns 22 today, but it hasn’t aged a lot

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Today marks the 22nd anniversary of the Philippines’ connection to the World Wide Web, which might set off waves of nostalgia for some of you who may be old enough to remember the infancy of Internet culture in the country. 

I can hardly remember when I first hooked up my computer using a prepaid dial-up service — Internet cards were all the rage back in the early 2000’s — but I’m certain my use of the Internet involved a lot of time spent listening to the now-iconic modem handshake tone and waiting, and then more waiting. Oh, how I wish I could get all those idle hours back. (Insert situational GIF here.)

But enough about me, let’s talk about how where the Philippines is right now in terms of Internet adoption. Spoiler alert: Things don’t look rosy if the latest State of the Internet Report by networking-services company Akamai Technologies is to be believed. In fact, judging by how local Internet service providers have performed the past quarter, you could argue that the Philippines hasn’t matured enough with time. Which is a bit like saying the rest of the world has moved on to HTML5, whereas we’re still collectively living in the Adobe Flash Player era. Or that we’re rooting for Michael Jordan and the 90’s Chicago Bulls to win the NBA championship in 2016.

Akamai State of the Internet Report Q4 2015

PH ranks second-worst in terms of average download speed in the Asia-Pacific region

The Philippines, based on Akamai’s Q4 2015 survey, has the second-worst average broadband connection speed in the Asia-Pacific region, barely besting only India (3.2Mbps vs. 2.8Mbps). The country’s peak download speed of 27Mbps also trails most of its Asian neighbors, with only China and India faring worse. On a slightly positive note, the numbers have improved drastically year-over-year, which might indicate better days are ahead. Or at least I’d like to think so, what with the proliferation of residential fiber-broadband access and increasing competition between service providers. And I don’t mean the kind of competition that’s led to Australian telecom giant Telstra waving the white flag on a joint venture with San Miguel Corporation, as unfortunate as the situation with the local telecom industry is.

Speed is the metric by which consumers judge ISPs — and this holds true even for the nation with the second-slowest Internet speed in all Asia. Thankfully, more and more broadband companies are learning that lesson, as shown by the recent surge in fiber-network rollouts since the previous year. Akamai estimates around 2 percent of broadband subscribers in the Philippines are able to connect to the Internet at speeds higher than 10Mbps, which represents a triple-digit growth (from a low base) compared to the same period a year ago. So what’s the takeaway from all of this? We’re not where we want to be, but the industry is moving somewhat in the right direction, if at a snail’s pace. Which means it could be some time before things get much better.
[irp posts=”7566" name=”Singapore, S. Korea dominate 4G LTE rankings, Philippines struggles”]
Source: Akamai
Image credit: The Taft Life

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Netflix might limit password sharing between users

In order to gain more revenues?

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Netflix isn’t chill when it comes to password sharing. During its third-quarter earnings interview, the streaming giant discussed its plans. The company tackled users sharing one account to find a way around paying for a monthly subscription.

Netflix CFO Spencer Neumann says the company is continuing to monitor the situation. Neumann added, ”We’ll see those consumer-friendly ways to push on the edges of that.”

It’s still unclear on how Netflix will limit password sharing since the streaming giant didn’t announce anything specific. Netflix’s goal seems to restrict account sharing to people living in the same household. Some speculate that the company will take a look into IP addresses, but it poses a problem for families living apart. But for now, you can still enjoy sharing your account with friends and families as Netflix claimed they have “no big plans to announce at this time in terms of doing something different.”

 

Presently, users can log onto Netflix regardless of how many devices they have. Its only limitation — depending on the subscription plan — is how many people can stream all at the same time. In the near future, it isn’t surprising for Netflix to push through with their plans to limit password sharing since the competition with Disney+ and Apple TV+ is getting tight. In order to gain more revenue, Netflix might have to convert people to pay for their own subscription.

SEE ALSO: 5 reasons why Disney+ is better than Netflix (and 1 big reason why it’s not)

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Enterprise

Tim Cook is now the chairman of a school in China

New position comes as Apple faces Hong Kong controversy

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Today, a lot of Western companies are in an ocean of hot water. Following the recent Hong Kong uprisings, some American corporations are surprisingly taking the side of China. Though most won’t admit it, the wave of China-sponsored censorship is almost always attributed to the company’s desire to appease its Chinese backers.

Currently, the most prevalent culprits are Blizzard, Apple, and the NBA. For their part, these companies are already in a rudimentary stage of damage control. However, Apple is still digging itself deeper into a strange hole.

Based on a meeting summary, Apple CEO Tim Cook is now the chairman of the advisory board for Tsinghua University’s School of Economics and Management. He will oversee the position for the next three years. Cook will work to make the Chinese school into a “world-class” school.

Notably, Cook has served on the board before. He is joined by Alibaba founder Jack Ma, Tencent founder Pony Ma, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, and Tesla’s Elon Musk. Foreign presence is normal for the advisory board. However, Cook’s new position is a curious decision given his company’s current controversy with Chinese censorship.

Recently, Apple pulled critical apps from its App Store in Hong Kong. The apps supposedly revealed police and protester movements to their users. Apple’s decision was heralded as the company’s selling out to China. Since then, Cook has issued a defensive stance against detractors, claiming the app’s inherent danger factor.

Regardless, Tim Cook has a lot of explaining to do.

SEE ALSO: China isn’t happy with Apple amid Hong Kong protests

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India will let Huawei demo its 5G technology

Huawei is leading the 5G race

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On the consumer side, Huawei is known for making smartphones and wearables. However, the Chinese company is currently leading research and development of 5G — the next generation of wireless mobility.

It has gotten approval to participate in the demonstration of 5G use cases during the three-day India Mobile Congress to be held in New Delhi, even as the government is yet to take a decision on allowing the firm to participate in the upcoming 5G field trials.

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has assigned telecom service providers with spectrum in the 3400-3600Mhz band range to demonstrate India-specific 5G technology-use cases.

Huawei will present the demos with Airtel and Vodafone-Idea, who currently use Huawei and ZTE equipment for their network operations in India.

The Chinese giant has been barred by the US due to alleged security concerns. Earlier this year, there were revelations that Huawei is embedding snooping software in the source code of its serves to spy and access the data of other countries.  The US is also lobbying its close allies to boycott Huawei.

On the other hand, Huawei currently leads the 5G revolution due to its massive investment in research and development. Experts say the global rollout of 5G will be delayed by a couple of years if Huawei is barred in multiple markets. Competing companies include Ericsson and Nokia.

India is yet to give Huawei a clean chit for an actual rollout though. For now, the nod is seen as more of a diplomatic move by the Indian government ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to India.

SEE ALSO: The new online generation: Explaining 5G internet

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