The Cost of Internet in the ASEAN +3 Region

by Carlo Miguel Castañeda, on category "Lifestyle,Money Matters,Technology"

November 2, 2015

Cost of Internet in ASEAN Region
With Australian company Telstra set to begin operating in the Philippines soon, thanks to a joint venture with the San Miguel Corporation, most other telecom companies in the country are also stepping up their game in the broadband arena.
Most of Asia is already running on minimum speeds of 20Mbps and 100Mbps for a fraction of the cost as opposed to prices here. The fact that broadband speeds in the country cost so much raises the question: “Why don’t we have the same kind of speed as the rest of Asia?”
Multiple probes have been launched towards answering that question, the answer being that it’s relatively difficult for infrastructure to be built here as compared to places like Hong Kong and Singapore, given that the Philippines is an archipelago. According to Vicente Froilan Castelo, general legal counsel of Globe Telecom Inc, during a senate probe, “The Philippines has 7,107 islands so it’s an expensive network to put up. It’s a more complex network.”
The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has also pointed out that countries with better infrastructure for connections have support from the government, and that it’s not a lack of legislation – but too much legislation, particularly in Local Government Units – that prevents better infrastructure from being built.
You may be wondering just what the cost of internet in the ASEAN is. We’ve put together a handy little infographic showing the relative speed, cost, and broadband adoption in the ASEAN Plus Three countries.
If you’re looking to upgrade your internet connection, but aren’t sure which providers offer the best deal, head on over to our Broadband comparison section and check the best deals available to you.
Cost of Internet is the ASEAN Region Infographic

Monthly Price per Mbps

The price of high-speed internet is often in flux. Given that most areas are gaining multiple providers, the average prices per month tend to shift.

Country Price
Philippines Php 1,155
Thailand Php 107
Japan Php 12
Singapore Php 134
Laos Php 2,215
South Korea Php 20
Myanmar Php 3,470
Cambodia Php 445
Malaysia Php 477
Vietnam Php 486
Brunei Php 727
Indonesia Php 860
China Php 90

 Average Speed

The average speed is the middle of most commercially available internet speeds within a country. While higher speeds may be available, these are the speeds at which these countries start.

Country Speed
Philippines 3.6 Mbps
Laos 8.1 Mbps
Indonesia 6.8 Mbps
Myanmar 6.1 Mbps
Brunei 6.1 Mbps
Malaysia 7.2 Mbps
Cambodia 9.2 Mbps
Vietnam 17.3 Mbps
Thailand 19.8 Mbps
China 31 Mpbs
Japan 81.4 Mbps
South Korea 59.3 Mbps
Singapore 118.8 Mbps

 4 Mbps Broadband Adoption

Although the National Telecommunications Commission considers data connection speeds of at least 256 Kbps as “broadband”, many other countries and data providers define it as at least 4 Mbps.

Country Broadband Adoption
South Korea 96.00%
Thailand 95.00%
Japan 90.00%
Singapore 87.00%
Malaysia 55.00%
Vietnam 32.00%
China 28.00%
Philippines 15.00%
Indonesia 9.00%
Brunei 5.70%
Myanmar 0.20%
Cambodia 0.20%
Laos 0.10%

As far as speed and penetration go, Singapore rules Southeast Asia. While the Philippines languishes at the bottom of the rankings with the slowest and priciest connections, that may no longer be the case with Telstra entering the broadband internet race in the Philippines, and with local providers stepping up their games by introducing 1 Gbps connections and other services into the country.