When a former undersecretary of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) recently questioned the reportedly exorbitant cost of the agency’s current Free Internet Wi-Fi Project, incumbent officials defended the project and claimed the VSAT tech being used is actually cheaper and provides faster Internet. But the former undersecretary remains unconvinced.
In his Facebook post, ex-DICT official Eliseo Rio Jr. said that claims on the current VSAT system being 20 times faster and 5 times less expensive (versus the previous Pipol Konek Project, a similar free Wi-Fi project) cannot be verified by facts.
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Rio continued to explain that a faster speed VSAT system will naturally cost more instead of less, citing “the law of physics that has to be followed” surrounding VSAT. He also claimed that DICT wasted money when it deployed VSATs in areas already serviceable by fiber optic and other terrestrial methods.
The DICT, on the other hand, presented its own figures. If both former and current projects were to reach the contracted 6.3 Mbps information rate, the DICT claims the former project would cost Php63,826.67 monthly per Mbps, while the current project only costs Php14,285.71.