Qualitynet GM Speaks Out

Posted by Mark

On Tuesday, the Ministry ordered the ISPs to cut prices by at least 40 percent, slashing the price of an annual subscription for a 1 megabyte per second (mbp) connection to 48 Kuwaiti dinars ($170), while 8 mbps will now cost 200 dinars.
That means Kuwait is considerably cheaper than other Gulf countries; in Bahrain, for example, Batelco charges 120 dinars ($320) annually for a 1 mbp line and 360 dinars for 8 mbps.

But that will do little to improve fixed broadband take-up, said Qualitynet’s Kooheji, with Kuwait’s penetration of about 5.5 percent half that of the United Arab Emirates.

“We receive lots of calls from customers who want to upgrade and take the maximum speed for the price available, but they cannot do so,” said Kooheji. “The government should put more effort into improving the telecom infrastructure rather than cutting prices.”

Kooheji said only about 15 percent of fixed broadband connections in the country used fibre, with the remainder on copper lines.

If it wasn’t for WiMD I’d still be stuck on a 2Mbps DSL connection with a 256kb uplink. Yet I’d still be one of the lucky ones since at least I have a phone line. Check out the news article on [Yahoo]


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New Lower Internet Prices

Posted by Mark

The Ministry of Communications has set new maximum prices for various DSL speeds and as of now Qualitynet and KEMS have both updated their prices online to reflect the change. According to a person I spoke to at Fasttelco, they have yet to finalize their prices but it will most likely be very similar to Qualitynet and KEMS.

Prices above are yearly.
Sources: QualitynetKEMS


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Where do the World’s Tweets come from?

Posted by Mark

Gizmodo has a visual showing where the majority of the world’s tweets come from and Kuwait is ranked high. Not only that but Kuwait is one of only two other countries with high ratio of tweets to interent users. That’s pretty extraordinary, you can check their post and full uncropped visualization [Here]

Thanks Naveen


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Kuwait’s Internet Speed vs The World

Posted by Mark

According to Net Index, Kuwait ranks 104th place worldwide when it comes to the average internet speed while Luxembourg tops the list with an average speed of 41.01 Mbps. They also have a list of the fastest ISP’s and currently WiMD who are my current favorite ISP are leading the list by a good chunk. That probably has to do with the fact that the slowest speed they are willing to sell you is 6Mbps while with others like Qualitynet you could sign up to 1Mbps if you want to. Check out all the date on Net Index [Here]


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Kuwait sent almost 60 million tweets in the month of March

Posted by Mark

The total number of active Twitter users in Arab countries is now up to 1,311,882, says new data through to March of this year. Kuwait leads the way with a Twitter population penetration of some 8.13 percent, ahead of Bahrain (4.28 percent), Qatar (2.22 percent), the UAE (2.16 percent) and Saudi Arabia (1.37 percent).

Kuwait sent almost sixty million tweets in the month of March. The most popular topic across all Arab countries was the #Bahrain hashtag.

That’s alot of tweets. [Source]


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WiMD is back to normal

Posted by Mark

In my “WiMD Internet – 3 Months Later” post I noted on how my connection’s overall speed had decreased. Turns out the issue was with the wireless connection from my building to their tower since after running tests with their server I noticed I was only getting around 5Mbps instead of 10. The problem has now been fixed and I reran the speedtest and here are the updated results:

I was satisfied with my connection when it wasn’t performing at it’s best since I hadn’t really noticed a drop but now that it’s back to normal I’m even more confident I made the right choice going with WiMD.


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WiMD Internet – 3 Months Later

Posted by Mark

Back in February I signed up to a 10Mbps connection with WiMD and just over 3 months have passed since then so I figured I’d post a second impression. For those of you who missed my previous posts, WiMD is a local wireless internet provider that uses technology similar to WiFi and WiMAX except theirs works using the 5 GHz wavelength.

Since installing WiMD I got rid of all my other internet connections and have put all my trust in them. That might not sound like a big deal but you have to consider the fact I live my life online and if I don’t have access to internet I start experiencing withdrawal symptoms. Ok maybe that’s a bit extreme but you get the idea.

So how’s the connection speed 3 months later? Browsing websites everything is still super fast, pages load instantly and there is no lag of any sort. Downloading torrents I also don’t have any issues, if I let it download without any limitations it can easily bypass 1,000Kbps. YouTube on the other hand is horrible with WiMD. I’m not sure what exactly is the problem but I can stream an HD video from Vimeo instantly but I can’t watch a non-HD video on YouTube without having to wait ages for it to load. Running speed tests has also provided me with vastly different results than when I first started with WiMD. When I last ran the speed tests 3 months back I was getting results of around 10Mb/s, this time around I was having trouble getting half that. Check out the results below:

But really if it wasn’t for the YouTube issue I wouldn’t have noticed anything out of the ordinary. My biggest issue really is the YouTube problem since it’s ridiculous to have to wait for a low res video to load on a 10Mbps connection. I’ve already contacted support and they told me they’re working on a fix for it and I trust that they are. The speed test results have dropped considerably and what gets affected by this the most is downloads from a single source like say downloading an update or video from an Apple server. Since most of my downloads take place while I’m out of the house or asleep I’m not affected by this but I’m sure it does other people.

The best thing about WiMD and something I make great use of is the upload speed, it’s fast! What this allows me to do is upload files onto the server a lot quicker compared to my previous DSL connection. Nat takes advantage of this the most since she spends a lot of time emailing her clients large files and what used to take her a couple of hours now takes around 20 minutes.

But, like I previously mentioned, I’ve given up all my other internet connections including my very reliable DSL connection because I trust WiMD. I know they’re busy right now working to fix whatever needs to be fixing so I’m not concerned too much. They’ve just started catering to consumers recently and I know for a fact they’ve been overwhelmed with subscribers so it’s only a matter of time before things get back to normal. I’ll have to wait and see but so far I have no regrets signing up with them. They’re the best available option for me right now.

If you’re interested in a connection you can call them on 22475841 and 22475842 or visit their website [Here]

Update: Turns out the problem was the connection from my house to the tower. It’s been fixed and new speedtest results are posted [Here]


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Free WiFi at The Village

Posted by Mark

WiMD has setup free wifi at The Village in Abu Al-Hassany. They’re planning to roll out a country wide wifi network in the near future and for the next few months they’re testing the service out at The Village. No idea what the download speed is or if any ports are closed but my guess is their network won’t have a problem handling any bandwidth abuse.


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Internet Slowdown

Posted by Mark

If you’re experiencing internet slowdown then you’re not alone. An undersea cable near Egypt was cut and it’s now effecting internet all over Kuwait. I guess the sharks are back…


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10Mbps with WiMD

Posted by Mark

After trying out WiMD with unlimited speed I finally had to decide on what connection I was going to subscribe to and I decided to go with the 10Mbps. I originally wanted to go with 15Mbps but decided KD72 a month is more than what I was willing to pay. 10Mbps is KD523 a year which works out to KD43.5 a month and to me is a much more reasonable amount.

I’ve had this connection for 2 days now which is enough time to get a first impression. Browsing is still super fast and I managed to download torrents at speeds of around 1.3MB/s to 1.5MB/s which is pretty fast. I imagine with a 15Mbps connection you would get around 2MB/s to 2.3MB/s speeds. The best part is that even if I’m downloading torrents at full speed it doesn’t hinder my browsing experience. Not sure how that is possible but with all my previous connections I always had to limit my torrents download speed so I could still have some bandwidth left to browse with. With WiMD on the other hand I’ve got my torrents set to download at full speed and I browse with no slowdown.

Below are speedtest results. This isn’t very accurate because for example you have various speedtest servers in London and when testing one would give me a very low ping rate of under a 100 but the download rate would be around 4Mbps while another would give me a higher ping rate in the 300’s but with a higher download speed. Thats why I decided I would perform the test on all the servers and post the ones with the highest download speeds.

I really hope the connection doesn’t suffer in the long run once more and more users sign up. That’s actually my only concern but I’ll post an update 6 months down the line and let you guys now how things turned out. If you want to get a second opinion Marzouq over at zDistrict just signed up to a 20Mbps connection and posted about it [Here]


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