Astro IPTV, Time, TM Unifi, Maxis and more! All the home broadband plans in Malaysia analyzed!
Home Broadband Technical Bits Explained
There are actually many ways in which you can experience the internet at home these days. In the past it used to be via dial-up, where you make a ‘phone call’ from your computer to the internet provider and it gives you broadband. As well as being much faster than dial-up, broadband offers a couple of other key benefits. It’s always connected, so you don’t need to wait for the internet provider to ‘answer your call’, and it allows you to make and receive phone calls on the same line while it’s being used.
The old style ADSL broadband (most people’s experience of it is through TM’s Streamyx service, here we call it non-FTTH, explanation below) is normally delivered to your home via the phone line so you normally don’t have to do any extra drilling or installing, while FTTH requires some extra work as its typically delivered through a different line which needs to be installed.
Normally you’ll get a broadband modem and/or router, which allows your computer to use the signal, of course, all this equipment costs the service provider money, so most will lock you into a minimum 12-month contract (for FTTH 24-month contracts are the norm!) to recoup costs.
With so many companies granted broadband spectrum licenses these days, one would expect the competition in Malaysia’s broadband market to be cut-throat by now. But no, the cost for a basic broadband service is yet to be dirt cheap. Only a handful of plans out there are below RM50 per month and there is no provider that really guarantees service consistency. So much for “Best Effort Basis”!
Until the emergence of Fibre to the Home (FTTH), that is. First introduced to the mass market by TM 2 years ago, it is touted to consistently support up to 10Gbps bandwidth and the cost to have this service at home is almost as comparable as the conventional home broadband.
Basically, FTTH is supposed to be faster, more reliable and not necessarily that much more expensive than ADSL broadband.
Sounds like digital dream but we’re not sold until it is available to every home in Malaysia. FTTH is currently being rolled out in stages across the country, with a handful of providers offering plans to the public.
Before we dissect the plans offered by the broadband players to find out which is the cheapest plan you can get, it is worth to note that they will be grouped into FTTH and non-FTTH (ADSL and mobile broadband but what’s stopping you from using it at home). We know the agony of living outside FTTH coverage areas, hence the non-FTTH category to fulfill your Internet needs for now.
Only providers with coverage of at least the Klang Valley and 10 major cities in Malaysia are eligible for this showdown. This means guys like Jaring, VDT and Giga are left out. We will look at the plans in a 24-month context and show you how much money you can actually save by choosing the right plan.
Road warriors and those who don’t need WiFi at home, you’re not #foreveralone. We have a Cheapest Mobile Broadband section especially for you!