Cyber Change

In June, I signed for a new internet subscription. The Internet Provider Emtel had recently launched their new product called Airbox. The Airbox uses a relatively new technology that employs high-speed wireless broadband or FTTA (Fibre to the Antenna also called Fibre through the Air).

IMAG0145After more than one month, the delay due to the high demand on the island, the installation was finally done and I traded-in my Wimax connection for the new Airbox system with a 30Mbps subscription. The Emtel tech team of two guys arrived and installed the new antenna on the roof along with the coax cabling down to the modem-router and my PC. The complete installation only took 45 minutes and the modem-router was initialized on a test connection. After an hour the connection was in operation and stable.

IMAG0147The cable modem-router delivers WiFi in the home and there is a phone with free local calls included in the package. This modem is a Technicolor TC7200-20 termed as a residential cable gateway for broadband internet access, telephone connection and wireless networking all in one unit. There are four ethernet ports (RJ-45 connector) on the back of the modem and I have connected my own Netgear R6300 router to it which in turn provides WiFi to a Netgear N300 WiFi extender in the home.

Initial broadband speed tests show normal results but this needs to be monitored over a longer period and during peak usage periods. With any new technology implementation you can expect some “teething” problems at the provider end. Already there have been complaints from users connected to one base station which is experiencing technical problems. Fortunately, I am not connected to that base station and so far my internet connection is stable.

Hopefully, this new service will be improved in the future, such as the addition of more base stations, not just for extending coverage on the island but also to ease line-of-sight in urban areas. The good news is that Emtel, the provider, is planning to invest in the installation of new relay antennas.

For the home users things are changing for the better. Slowly but surely, in the internet broadband offers, we are coming to the end of monopoly. The prospects of investments in modern technology will in time raise the country to the true rank of Cyberisland.

Further information
Emtel turns to FTTA technology to counter fibre broadband threat
Modem description
Airbox (French article) : Emtel investit Rs 700 millions
Emtel Airbox for the Mauritius subscriber

8 thoughts on “Cyber Change”

  1. Given your location, your speed test numbers don’t look too bad: 28,61 mbps download / 1.10 mbps upload. Your post caused me to check out my speeds. In the Seattle area, my download speed is 79.59 mbps and the upload speed is 12 mbps. Are there any restrictions on how much you can download in any given period?

    1. Interesting and jealous of your internet facilities. It will be a few years before we can have such speeds here mainly due to the undersea cable limitations where we only have two connections to the continent with the cables SAFE and LION. No restrictions or quota/cap imposed by the provider on download just a FUP (fair usage policy) clause.

  2. An interesting post Mike – thanks.
    I know I’ve said to you before, that Mauritius seems to be way ahead of the U.K., in Internet technology, which seems quite surprising considering that over history we have usually been way-ahead of other countries.

    With this new technology of yours and noteing the speeds of data, it certainly is quite impressive whilst in the U.K., the only comparison is the fibre-optic land-line. I can’t personally talk about either G3 or now G4, but that is only any good when there is good radio link-coverage – which is not the case everywhere.

    Virgin are advertising a speed of “152Mbyte/S upload & 1.5Gbyte/S download speeds” – using a new-ish cable system called DOCSIS3.1 and who intend to roll-out this across the U.K. immediately and although this will particularly benefit those who wish to watch and/or download High-Definition T.V. and/or play H.D. Games via the Internet, it is unlikely to benefit the likes of myself (to any great extent).

    There is an obvious commercial war against British Telecom, Sky and the various other companies who have been “in charge” of the telecoms industry for ‘far’ too long. (As long as prices are kept reasonable, then that would benefit us…

    Mr. Terry

    1. No, not subscribed to Canal+. However, all of a sudden the island is getting more than one interesting offer. Amazing developments for local users.

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