Zit Seng's Blog

A Singaporean's technology and lifestyle blog

Wah Malaysia Boleh

Wah, I thought Malaysia boleh. This morning on CNA I watched how a Malaysian astronaut has gone into space. It must have certainly been a proud moment for all Malaysians. Then from a ping.sg link on 4G wireless broadband in Malaysia, I thought, wah not bad leh. How is it that Singapore is loosing out in mobile broadband?

Alamak, someone needs to inform iZZinet, the Malaysian operator of this new mobile broadband service, what 4G is. For a start, check out the Wikipedia definition. Oh no, iBurst, the technology that iZZinet uses, is classified as pre-4G. The “4G” service sold by iZZinet operates at a mind-boggling 1Mbps downlink speed. Yes, that’s right, 1Mbps. Anyone wants to guess the downlink speed for a modest 3.5G technolog humbly known as HSDPA?

The Wikipedia idea of 4G expects convergence of voice, data and multimedia streaming on a wireless IP based network. From what I can gleam about iBurst, it seems to only carry data. (Of course you could then build VOIP over it, etc, but that is not an integrated solution incorporated into iBurst.) Other iBurst operators, such as the iBurst in Australia, doesn’t even make any reference to 4G. Possibly, the real speed of iBurst may only be down to 150Kbps (according to Angus on Goozeberry), with similiar speed complaints from iZZinet users (MyPDACafe).

ArrayComm, the people behind iBurst, should be credited for developing an innovative mobile broadband technology that was cool at that time. It’s probably the marketing types further downstream who have turned it into 4G. 🙂

For now, I think 3G (and 3.5G if you will) works sufficiently well. It would be nice to be faster, but just about anything and everything would be nice to be faster. Speed is never enough.

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