Wonder where the bandwidth went?


It is no surprise to anyone in Vietnam today that the internet bandwidth is much lower than it was 2 years ago. First, APEC was thought to be the culprit. When the conference ended, we all thought our bandwidth would return. Nope. Then the earthquake in Taiwan caused a huge decrease in bandwidth. Even to this day, the post-APEC bandwidth has never returned to us. Now, thieves are stealing fiber-optic cable lines off the shore of Vietnam. Notice when you read the article, no one seems to ask WHERE the thieves got the information about the location of the fiber-optic cables along the coast of Vietnam…

  1. Fiber-optic cable looted in southern Vietnam

  2. Photographed cable thieves suspected Vietnamese

Stolen Fiber Optic Cables - Vietnam

Image Source: Thanh Nien New


  1. Wow. Good blog post. Very interesting. The VOIP phone at Trang’s mom’s house has been difficult to use the past few days. Worked great a week ago and for the previous month. VOIP was hard to use after the earthquake too. This lack of bandwidth is really hurting the outsource operations that are bringing VN so much money.

  2. troi oi! Trang is constantly on my case tonight about how crappy my phone system is and how it is broken and I need to fix it etc. I cannot seem to get it through to her that the bandwidth to Vietnam is the problem. She can hear her mom clearly but her mom cannot hear her. There are lots of cuts in the audio. To me that sounds like a classic case of the pipe into VN (downloads) being saturated while the pipe out of VN (uploads) is clear so we can hear her voice.

  3. Tracy,

    This is how they trick Vietnamese ADSL customers into thinking they are paying for, lets say, 768 kb/s packages. They load up websites located within Vietnam, use a bandwidth tester to show that they are getting the speeds they paid for. Well, I caught that once and when FPT came to my house, I used a bandwidth tester outside of Vietnam. Less than 56 kb/s. I could not load up Gmail that day. Etc., etc., etc.

    Finally the technician admitted that there are too many users and told me to wait a couple months. Well, it has been a couple of months, no bandwidth increase.

    I think Trang’s mother should switch to Skype. It seems to work the best from Vietnam right now. USVoiz, VietnamVoiz and the other big VoiP here are suck right now.

    We can easily test it with my computer to your computer, right 🙂

  4. Hey, this entry is interesting. We are having problems too but it seems to have resolved itself. Anyway, I use Skype and it has been good, no problems with audio but i can’t do video.

  5. Actually, it seems the time of day can greatly affect the quality of the network connection. During peak hours we are completely unable to make a VOIP call. We can hear them but they cannot hear us (US transmitting to VN). But during off hours like very early in the morning it works perfectly. My phone system and VOIP skills are vindicated and now I think Trang understands that I did not cause this problem myself. 🙂

  6. Have them switch to Viettel, they do not use the same line as VNPT and FPT. I heard they still get good bandwidth during the day. I had to switch to FPT here but they were never near the speeds of Viettel.

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