Ookla, the well-known internet speed test company, has released a report that highlights the state of mobile data speeds in Asia. According to the report, Pakistan’s largest mobile network operator (MNO) Jazz provides the fastest mobile internet in Pakistan, but when compared to other MNOs in the region, it falls behind. The report shows that Jazz offers a maximum mobile internet speed of 21.93 Mbps, which is better than just three under-developed Asian countries: Afghanistan, Brunei, and Bhutan.
Advancements in Technology and Infrastructure in the Asian Region
The advancements in technology and infrastructure in the Asian region have allowed for faster and more reliable mobile data connections. The deployment of 4G LTE networks across the region has been one of the key factors contributing to this trend. MNOs in the Asian region have been investing heavily in upgrading their networks to 5G technology to meet the growing demand for high-speed mobile data services.
Concerns and Challenges for Pakistani MNOs
Based on the Ookla report, even mobile operators from developing countries such as Cambodia and the Philippines provide faster internet speeds than Jazz, which is a concern for all Pakistani MNOs. Experts suggest that Pakistani MNOs should focus on improving their networks to become competitive in the region, rather than just boasting about having the fastest MNO in the country. Some experts believe that Pakistani MNOs have been facing challenges in recent years, which is why they are struggling to keep up with their peers in the region.
Regulatory challenges such as high taxes, complex licensing procedures, and new regulations create uncertainty and increase compliance costs for MNOs in Pakistan. The payment of spectrum fees in dollars while earning in PKR has also led to balance of payment issues. Building and maintaining infrastructure in remote areas, intense competition, and economic instability are further challenges faced by MNOs.
Growth Prospects for MNOs in Pakistan
There are growth prospects for MNOs in Pakistan, and they can invest in network infrastructure and offer innovative pricing models to provide reliable and high-speed internet connectivity to consumers at affordable rates. The government can also simplify licensi
ng procedures, provide a clear regulatory framework, reduce spectrum fees, and offer tax incentives to encourage investment in the telecom sector. MNOs can collaborate and share infrastructure to reduce the cost of building and maintaining telecom infrastructure in remote areas. The government can also provide incentives to MNOs to invest in rural areas where the cost of building and maintaining infrastructure is higher.
Finally if we talk about the Jazz performance, Jazz may be the fastest mobile network in Pakistan, the country still lags behind other Asian countries in terms of mobile data speeds. Pakistani MNOs can improve their network infrastructure and become competitive in the region with concerted efforts from all stakeholders.