Patchy broadband tests patience of those on WFH
Internet usage in homes has gone up during the lockdown that has restricted movement, with broadband customers complaining about slowdown in services. While those working from home say the existing bandwidth is not supporting their official work online, other subscribers have been raising concern over frequent interruptions in downloading files.
T K Pandian, a resident of Anna Nagar, said he was finding it difficult to download even small files using his broadband connection. A subscriber of BSNL who uses a Wi-Fi connection at home to complete official work, he said he had been struggling with BSNL broadband over the past two months. “But, it has aggravated in the last 15 days. Drop in signal on my Wi-Fi modem has become frequent as it has become a herculean task to even download a file with a size of just 70MB,” he said.
The state-owned BSNL has the highest number of broadband connections, an estimated 1.5 lakh, in Chennai telecom circle comprising the city, Chengalpet, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts. The circle also has about 20,000 subscribers with optical fibre cable connections.
There are other problems too. A few residents in some parts of the city have complained that they have been unable to open two portals at the same time as the pressure on the server has increased since the time companies asked their employees to work from home. Sundar, a private bank employee and resident of Aminjikarai said that the Wi-Fi connection has been slow at least since the middle of March. He uses an office software for official purpose that requires better bandwidth. “But, it is slow as I cannot open two websites at a time,” he said. Accessing social media portals is also difficult. “We have an Airtel connection. We tried to call the customer care number to complain, but could not reach it,” he said.
While Airtel did not respond to a TOI query over complaints from customers, BSNL is increasing its gateway capacity. When contacted, BSNL Chennai Telephones chief general manager V K Sanjeevi said the traffic had increased by 20% over the last fortnight recording the maximum upload and download speed of 360GB per second. “Now, every hour has turned into a peak hour after work from home became the order of the day. We are activating our new equipment to upgrade the gateway bandwidth capacity by adding another 100GB per second within a week,” he told TOI.
―Times of India
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