“I'd rather regret the things that I have done than the things that I have not.”
― Lucille Ball

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

"Digitel" Internet

Within a week after arrival in the Philippines, we have Internet at home now. Wow!!

Since my father passed away in January I didn't have time or was not in the mood to update my Blog. Also the approaching retirement, as of April 1st, meant too many things to organize, so I failed to work on my Blog, which I will rectify the comming days and weeks, by writing little stories or remarkable events in the past. I will back- or anti-date them as well.

Last week we have visited the branch offices of the major Internet providers in the Philippines, being Globe and Smart. It turned out that Smart could only provide wireless Internet in a barangay close to Urdaneta and not our barangay. Next we were informed by the Globe sales lady that only in an area at a distance of maximum 1.5 km from town proper wireless Internet was available and via landline they did not service our barangay.

Friday 16th of April we visited our neighbours, as the daughter seemed to have an Internet connection. When we were still in the Netherlands my wife had discovered her in Facebook. I could ask her some questions and see the equipment she was using. It turned out to be a DSL connection with an ethernet modem. The provider she used was Digitel.

Monday morning 19th we went to the Digitel branch office and indeed after some investigations regarding the end-point for the DSL line, they could offer us a contract, called Plan 999. For peso 999 per month you get a DSL connection, 512kb/s speed, single IP out and an analog telephone for free local calls and inbound calling from everywhere, also international.

The contract is for 3 years, initial costs Peso 1.120 and 150 m cable included. Early termination fee is 2 monthly terms only (in case we cannot move this contract to our new location next year).

In the afternoon a Digitel team would do a local survey regarding available capacity and the distance from their "pole" to our house, which was 280 meters, so an excess of 130 meters, which would cost us Peso 1.500 additionally.

The surveyors told me that they needed at least one, but preferably two poles of 6 feet high, to guide the cables from their network to our home. Costs for me of course. Bamboo poles as a temporaly solution was acceptable.

Next day the installation team of 5 men arrived. Meanwhile my brother in law had purchased the poles in his home city San Carlos, which is famous for bamboo furniture, and installed them in the ground. I guess we will never replace them by steel poles before we move.

The team installed the cables and equipment in 2 hours time and after they left, another team arrived to check for the correct working and configuration. Perfect job done and a reasonable Internet speed. It took less than 2 working days since my first visit to their office. Recommended!!


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