postheadericon Tech Talk: Another ISP Smackdown...


It is almost one year to the day that I reviewed Broadlink vs. World Link vs. NTC Internet services (as all three were installed in my small home office) - and if you recall - Broadlink smacked down the competition with it's faster speeds, cheaper rates, and a unique roaming service. But that was a year ago, and in Internet time, that was almost an eon ago.

Nowadays, from my small off-ramp on the Internet highway – Dhobighat – I can get cable Internet service from my cable TV provider: Subisu. I've been using their Digital TV line to get clear reception on my new LED TV set - works great, although it's not a true digital service without an "HDMI out" from the digital box. I would not have thought of calling them to add Internet service to my home network if my Broadlink service had not slowly slowed down over the course of the past year. But that's what happens when an ISP gets wildly popular and the company is not equipped to keep up with demand.

So I sent Subisu an email (don't even try to call) and within a few days there were two technicians out to the house to do the installation. The first thing they did was to test the existing cable line to see if it could handle the Internet right along with the TV signal. It could not. By the way, my existing cable was strung thru a window, as apparently the company does not own a drill machine, or does not trust the techs to bring one out during cable installations. After all, who knows what they might drill through...

But these techs really knew their stuff, and after measuring the signal strength, they determined I needed another line into the home - this time under the door! Once the cable was laid in, the cable modem was easily connected to my wireless router, and within a few minutes, I had a Subisu home network up and running at 512 kbps speed. 

So how does the Subisu Internet cable service compare to a Broadlink Wireless service? Well, here ya go:

Smack! On Installation, Broadlink And Subisu Both Lose
Even thought Broadlink is a wireless provider, I still have a cable coming through a window – with one end attached to a wireless receiver mounted on my water tank, and the other end to a router in my home office. Over the course of this past year, I have had the receiver (called a C1 Device) pointed at various Broadlink towers - hoping to get a consistently reliable signal. Well, we are still searching for that mythical tower of 24-hour non-stop service...

In the case of Subisu, since the signal strength of the existing cable was not strong enough (that being split and inserted into various home orifices), I now have TWO lines, where hypothetically there should be one. And I can't close my balcony door. So as far as the physical installation goes, both companies lose. As for installation pricing, both are comparable: on one hand you pay for cable and a modem, on the other, cable and a C1 device.

SMACK SMACK! Subisu Wins On Delivery
The 512 kbps Subisu service (Nrs. 5000 per month, unlimited + TV) is currently outperforming the Broadlink 960 kbps delivery (Nrs. 6000 per month, unlimited) by at least 30%. For example, when tested against servers in America, Subisu comes in at almost 1000 kbps (1Mb) while Broadlink at only 700 kbps, on average. A quick call to Broadlink confirms that their systems have been taxed lately by demand and new equipment installs. But to be fair, Broadlink was providing the rated speed of 960kbps for most of the past year.

Triple SMACK! Subisu and Broadlink DRAW on Service and Support
The techs from both companies are top notch, and I was surprised that teams sent out from both orgs came knowledgeable of both Macs and PCs, and how to connect them to the Internet without a fuss. The online user "dashboards" that control your account are near identical - and easy to figure out, although it looks like Subisu copied Broadlink's dashboard so closely they forget to take out their competitor's banner ad...just log into your Subisu account and you see a Broadlink banner ad!

KO BY DECISION...Subisu!
So to sum up, if you are looking to upgrade your Internet service with something in the 512 kbps to 1Mb range, you can't really go wrong with either Broadlink or Subisu, with the following caveats: 1) neither company seems willing to drill holes for your cable lines, so you may have to live with cables snaking in through door jams and open windows, 2) to pay for your service, Broadlink offers online or scratch card (which is nothing short of a pain in the butt), while Subisu just sends out a babu on a bicycle to collect your payment when due, and 3) you may get better speeds at lower cost with Subisu, at least for right now, until Broadlink sorts out some bandwidth problems.

But what's really crazy about finding a reliable, 24x7 unlimited service ISP is that you may find yourself in my shoes: where you need TWO. For now, I am keeping both lines from Broadlink & Subisu, so that when one company has a temporary calamity, my home network just flips over to the other line still standing.

1 comments:

  1. Agreed,
    This is what i hate about, They are into Business without proper forecast and also poor customer services.

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Jiggy Gaton
lives in Kathmandu and is an aging technologist - has been since the days of Woodstock - so in the words of Roland The Gunslinger "he is from a world now gone by." However, Jigs is extremely up-to-date on all things tech and is also available for hire.
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