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SingTel sticking to gradual LTE roll-out, promises better quality

19 Sep
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(Photo credit: SingTel)

Despite seeing its rival M1 become the first to offer 4G throughout Singapore, SingTel is sticking to its guns and promising that its slower rollout will provide better quality.

M1 became the first telecom operator here to cover 95 per cent of the island with LTE or Long Term Evolution signals on September 15, and the pressure is now on the other two local telcos to match up.

Yet, the “red camp”, Singapore’s biggest telco, has hit back by suggesting it offers better quality of service. Said its CEO for Consumer in Singapore, Yuen Kuan Moon: “We will focus on quality rather than (rush to) cover the entire island with LTE.”

Speaking at a media briefing with network equipment vendor Ericsson on Monday, he said customers who hop on to SingTel’s LTE network now will be able to fall back on upgraded 3G speeds of up to 42Mbps in areas where the LTE signal is unavailable.

This faster 3G is exclusive to SingTel’s LTE subscribers, and appears to be a temporary measure to keep LTE subscribers happy until the whole island is covered.

SingTel currently has 50 per cent of the island covered with LTE and expects 95 per cent coverage by March 2013.

Check out our guide to whether or not it’s a good time to jump on the 4G LTE bandwagon.

Tagged in: broadband, Internet, 4G, LTE, M1, mobile broadband, SingTel,  

‘Smart packages’ effective in pre-paid smartphone market may be better than slashing data caps

26 Jun
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Although mobile data usage among prepaid customers has traditionally been low, an Ericsson study has concluded that the rise of affordable smartphones presents an opportunity for telcos to access the largely untapped market.

Given the largely value-conscious nature of these smartphone buyers, telcos in emerging markets are offering what Ericsson calls “smart packages” for pre-paid users to take full advantage of their smartphones, yet leaving the network relatively untaxed so that user-experience can be generally smooth across the board, Ericsson executives shared at a roundtable discussion on the sidelines of the CommunicAsia show earlier this week.

Tagged in: cloud, Internet, communicasia, data cap, ericsson, mobile broadband, mobile data, smartphone,  

Goondu DIY: Choosing and switching your mobile, broadband and TV plans

20 Feb

If you are signing up or renewing a broadband, mobile or pay-TV service these days, the questions you face can sometimes be rather daunting, given big changes – mostly positive – that have shaken up the telecom market in the past few years.

Who has the best broadband deals in Singapore? Who has the best bundled “triple play” deals with all three services packaged nicely and billed in a single envelop? And, of course, how do I switch all my plans over to one operator?

Answer these questions well and you could be on the way to substantial savings by buying wisely and also enjoy the convenience of having fewer bills from so many operators.

About four years ago, I’d have told you, if you watch live football, the choice was simple: go for StarHub, because it had the fastest (cable modem) broadband, per-second billing for its mobile services and of course, the crown jewel – English Premier League (EPL) on its cable TV channels.

But things have changed so much in the past few years that consumers are sometimes spoilt, perhaps even confused with choice.

Fibre broadband has truly given users better deals – S$39 a month for an unheard of 100Mbps, for starters. The upcoming three seasons of the EPL could well be shown on both SingTel and StarHub, and possibly even M1, thanks to Singapore’s new pay-TV rules. And let’s not forget number portability, which lets you keep your mobile number while switching telcos.

With so many changes in the past few years and more upcoming, what should you be aware of when you next sign up for those two-year contracts? Here’s a little guide, gleaned from my own experience buying these services.

Tagged in: broadband, Cellphones, Internet, IPTV, Pay-TV, Singapore, VOIP, diy, fibre broadband, M1, mobile broadband, number portability, SingTel, StarHub, triple play,  

SingTel launches LTE services, expects 80 per cent coverage by end 2012

21 Dec
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SingTel is upping download speeds on the go on December 22, with a new mobile broadband service that promises up to 75Mbps with the new LTE or long term evolution technology.

The new service will be available at Singapore’s central financial district at launch, along with other high traffic areas like Orchard, City Hall, Marina Bay and Novena. By end 2012, SingTel expects to provide coverage for 80 per cent of users, and 95 per cent by end 2013.

Rival telco M1 had launched a limited LTE service earlier this year, but it offered this only to business customers. SingTel’s service is open to consumers as well.

Tagged in: broadband, Cellphones, Enterprise, Featured, Internet, Singapore, 4G, Galaxy S II, LTE, mobile broadband, samsung, SingTel, USB dongle,  

Commentary: SingTel launches Singapore’s first “priority lane” broadband plans

14 Jun

Singapore broadband users will be looking at a brand new range of broadband services this week, when SingTel starts rolling out mobile broadband plans that promise “typical speeds” along with a “priority lane” for users on pricier plans to surf on the cyber highway.

Tagged in: broadband, Featured, Internet, mobile broadband, mobile penetration, SingTel,  

SingTel aims at newbie smartphone users

3 May
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Just when you thought that mobile data plans could not get cheaper, along comes an “entry level” plan from SingTel to entice users to “test water” with surfing on their phones.

A couple of weeks ago, SingTel updated the prices for its Broadband on Mobile services. There’s now a S$5.90-a-month plan that gives you 200MB of data, with the total bill capped at S$29.90 (inclusive of subscription price).

Tagged in: broadband, Cellphones, 3G Flexi, Broadband on Mobile, mobile broadband, SingTel,