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China Daily Website

Slow broadband web a problem in China: report

Updated: 2012-10-09 19:50

Slow broadband Internet speeds are a common problem in China, a recent TV program has reported.

The Weekly Quality Report, broadcast by CCTV News on Oct 7, asked experts to test the Internet speed of a Beijing user who bought a 6 Mbps broadband service. The result was only 0.29 Mbps at peak times, when more people surf the Web.

In the first six months of the year, the proportion of complaints received by China Consumers Association related to Internet and broadband services increased to 34.5 percent compared with 32.9 percent at the same time last year.

In Beijing alone, complaints received by the Beijing Consumer Association and the Beijing Administration for Industry and Commerce about slow download speeds and constant network outages in August were up nearly 50 percent compared with the previous month.

After testing numerous broadband providers in several provinces and cities, experts from the Internet Center of Tsinghua University found that the slow download speeds were because the broadband services supplied were not exclusive to each user, as the suppliers had claimed.

According to Xu Weilin, an engineer at the center, the bandwidth provided is usually smaller than advertised, and it's also shared by many users, which slows connection speeds once many users get online.

An industry insider told the TV program that there are many local Internet suppliers in addition to the two national suppliers. The smaller companies usually buy bandwidth from the two national companies and then sell it to individual users. In order to reduce costs, the small suppliers sell the bandwidth to as many users as they can, which can cause problems.