My broadband service provider, Netvigator (by PCCW), throw the switch of my broadband connection this morning to upgrade it from 30 Mbps to 100 Mbps. Although Netvigator has fiber services to homes unfortunately this is not available for my home. Instead what Netvigator offers at my address is DSL at 100 Mbps. Since my DSL modem was recently (3 months) upgraded all that was needed was a setting change at the PCCW exchange.

With this new technology it means most customers who receive broadband services from Netvigator will have or will soon to have 100 Mbps bandwidth if they want to upgrade.

I am now getting an average of 69 Mbps for downlink and 25 Mbps uplink. Previously when I was subscribing to their 30 Mbps service, my downlink was averaging at 28 Mbps and uplink was 8 Mbps.

Before the upgrade I was on the 12th month of a 24-month contract for Netvigator's 30 Mbps service at HKD238/month. Netvigator was able to cancel the remainder of my 30 Mbps contract and upgrade me to the 100 Mbps service with a 18-month contract for an additional HKD18/month, giving me a total of HKD256/month.

Since this is not Netvigator's FiberDirect service it is not a symmetric 100 Mbps (both downlink and uplink), but a bandwidth that offers theoretical 100 Mbps downlink and 30 Mbps uplink.

I use SpeedTest.net to check the speed but since it's scale does not go pass 50 Mbps I am not certain it is truly accurate. Using HK Broadband's test I was able to confirm that I do have a 100 Mbps (downlink) connection.

You may say, why do I need that kind of speed at home? Will I actually be able to utilize it? Keeping in mind there are many factors that reduce the quality of experience when accessing content over the Internet. One of the main bottleneck being the country's (city in the case of Hong Kong) connection to the Internet and the speed of the web service provider to serve the content/service you are seeking.

In my case the decision to upgrade to 100 Mbps was simple; given Netvigator's offer of only an additional HKD18/month and only another 12 months to my previous contract. Plus since the day I subscribed to Netvigator's 8 Mbps service the number of individuals and the type of content/services they access through the Internet had grown in my household, having a bigger pipe just eliminates one of the many bottlenecks that may result in poor quality of experience.

I do suggest people upgrade to 30 Mbps if they can find a good deal, and to 100 Mbps if they are already on the 30 Mbps service and it is available at your location.

[Updated: November 18, 2010, 15:15] After several hours of use the bandwidth had not degraded. I even did speed tests while NOW TV (the Netvigator IP TV service) is running and the bandwidth still averaging at around 65 Mbps downlink and 25 Mbps uplink. That's impressive. Previously even with the 30 Mbps broadband service I was getting bandwidth of 18 Mbps downlink and 3 Mbps uplink if I had NOW TV on.

Since there was no modem or wiring changes, the improvement has to do with the switch and/or circuit at the PCCW exchange, the 100 Mbps allowance and the algorithm to manage the bandwidth allowance.

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AuthorVinko
Categoriesopinion

Nintendo LogoUnless you live in one of the undeveloped countries you will no doubt hear of the famous Nintendo trio: "Nintendo Wii", "Nintendo DS" and "Nintendo Game Boy". When the Nintendo Game Boy came out in 1989 it easily became the most successful handheld game console. It appealed to both kids and adult alike. The latter mainly because there was no other alternative until 1990 when Sega released its weak competitive console.

Nintendo then released the Nintendo DS in 2004 to counter the competition from Sony with its PSP (Play Station Portable) game console. Nintendo quickly released a revised and much improved version called, "Nintendo DS Lite" in 2006. It is this latter version that took off is masses throughout Asia, mostly the adult players; both males and females.

In Hong Kong the Nintendo DS Lite phenomenon is quickly surpassed Sony PSP in just six months after its release, with Hong Kong electronic stores receiving large quantities of old Sony PSP as trade-ins for new Nintendo DS Lite consoles.

From my unscientific observation, most of the appeal appear to be females. One can see women playing the NDS Lite while walking on street, taking the MTR (subway), on the bus, in the tram, and in Starbucks. basically everywhere you can think of. At Starbucks one will see group plays (a group of players playing the NDS Lite over WiFi connection).

The Nintendo Wii or as Nintendo officially refers it as simply "Wii", is no exception. With its launch in the North America, UK and Japan late 2006, it had not met the overwhelming demand on the console. Even after 9 months after the official launch it is still very difficult to purchase a Wii console in North America and UK.

The would be players in the rest of the world did not stand idle by their counter parts in North America, UK and Japan. Grey Market units become available in Australia, South Korea, Europe and Hong Kong. In Hong Kong the USA version cause less than the Japanese version by about HKD700.00 and both versions can come modified to allow them to play games from both regions. It is now almost a year after the official launch in North America and Wii are still flying off shelves here in Hong Kong.

In the mean time Sony and Microsoft both suffered massive loses in their respective division for the Sony Play Station and XBox consoles.

Nintendo took a very different approach compared to Sony, Microsoft and Sega, when its console the Nintendo Gamecube and its predecessor Nintendo 64 was arguably unsuccessful. It focused on the gaming experience and more importantly the game play rather than the graphics and realism of the scenes in the games like Sony and Microsoft.

With this approach Nintendo came up with ingenious approaches to game play, demonstrated by their Wii console and the titles that had been released. Similarly they have similarly unique gaming experience with their Nintendo DS Lite titles. Both of these consoles have player interacting with the console in ways that cannot be found on Sony's PSP, Playstation or Microsoft's XBox 360.

The phenomenon is further validated by the number of titles available for the Nintendo DS Lite and Wii compared to the Sony Playstation 3, Sony PSP and Microsoft XBox 360. Also the sustained resell value of both the Wii and Nintendo DS Lite consoles compared to the Sony Playstation 3, Sony PSP and XBox 360. The latter is dropping even much faster now that Microsoft has officially acknowledge defects in almost 50% of the consoles sold worldwide. As a result costing Microsoft 1 billion USD for extended warrantees for the consoles.

Will Nintendo enjoy this success forever. Of course not. Both Sony and Microsoft will not stand idle by watching Nintendo chips away their respective market shares. A sign that Sony is not standing still can been seen in its Little Big Planet project. But we have yet to see any innovations from Microsoft.