Connectivity critical in fight against COVID-19

Jordan Zhu, Director, Cell Site Solutions, Southeast Asia, CommScope

 

As Thailand quickly pivots to remote working to deal with the COVID-19 outbreak, having sufficient bandwidth and connectivity to ensure seamless access to the Internet will become a critical baseline requirement for enterprises, in a bid to empower Thai employees to remain as productive as at work, while working from home. In fact, for companies in Thailand and across the world to stay competitive amidst the world’s greatest remote working experiment, connectivity will become as critical as water and power.

 

Already True Group is aiming to triple its network bandwidth capacity, and we are also seeing streaming giants like Netflix begin announcing reductions of streaming quality in Southeast Asia, such as in Malaysia and the Philippines. While such moves may eventually help ease the strain on Thailand’s Internet, which is reportedly seeing a 50 percent usage surge in the past month, broadband and mobile service operators in Thailand, whether providing a combined fixed and mobile service model or wireless only, will need to also ensure their fiber infrastructure and backbone networks are setup to cope with the spike in data flows stemming from increased use of real-time video calls, large file sharing and accommodating multiple collaborators over virtual workspaces in the foreseeable future.

 

While there have been significant efforts to enable robust, scalable Internet infrastructure for Thailand – such as the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society’s investment in the Asean Digital Hub national project – more can be done to enable high-speed broadband across the country to support this new, unplanned shift towards remote working. This could mean working more closely with industry partners and authorities across Thailand to deploy more Fibre-To-The-Home (FTTH) services, or tapping on Network Convergence which allow fiber networks to deliver a wider range of services, and enable new technologies.