By Dhaka Mirror : dhakamirror.com
The mobile data traffic per month has reached almost doubled ever since the coronavirus pandemic began as businesses, schools and the public are forced to move their services online.
For example, the average monthly data usage of a single mobile customer was 2 gigabytes (GB) in March 2020 while it now stands at around 4.5 GB, according to Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC).
The average monthly data usage surged 23 times from 2008 to 2022, said BTRC Chairman Shyam Sunder Sikder. “We have seen a tremendous growth in data usage in the last decade as the average monthly usage of mobile internet was just 208 megabytes (MB) per customer in 2008,” he added.
Sikder made these comments while speaking at an event at the Osmani Memorial Auditorium in Dhaka, on Sunday, where he shared the stunning rise of internet usage in the country in the last 14 years.
International internet bandwidth usage in Bangladesh was 7.5 gigabytes per second (Gbps) in 2008 while it now stands at 3,850 Gbps. In 2008, the price of internet bandwidth per Mbps was Tk 27,000, which dropped to only Tk 285 as of June 2021.
Only 0.1 per cent of telecom subscribers had a smartphone in 2008 where it was 48 per cent as of April 2022. In 2008, the country’s tele-density was 34.5 per cent while it now stands at 105.85 per cent as of April 2022.
Sikder went on to say that at present, 100 per cent of the people of the country are covered under the 2G network while 98 per cent of the people are getting the benefit of the 4G network.
The event was held to celebrate World Telecommunication and Information Society Day 2022, which was observed worldwide on May 17. The theme of this year’s event was “Digital Technologies for Older Persons and Healthy Ageing”.
“However, elderly people in Bangladesh are using less internet services than their peers in other parts of the world as they are lagging behind in terms of inclusion in digital technology,” he said.
The BTRC chairman urged the government, telecommunication and digital service providers, academia and all others concerned to take the necessary steps to ensure healthy aging and improved digital life of the elderly using digital
Mustafa Jabbar, telecom minister, said despite the stunning rise of internet usage, Bangladesh will not face any bandwidth crisis. Besides, the country will get its third submarine cable by 2025.
He then urged network operators in the country to provide quality 4G services to their customers. Regarding 5G services, he said that it would be introduced in time when needed.
Md Khalilur Rahman, secretary to the Posts and Telecommunications Division; Md Rafiqul Matin, managing director of Bangladesh Telecommunications Company; and Md Nasim Parvez, director general of the Systems and Services Division of the BTRC, also spoke at the event
– With The Daily Star input