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The Happy Nomad Tour’s Access To Bandwidth

by on January 9, 2013

in Adam, Happy Nomad Tour

I discovered that the website http://www.speedtest.net saves the tests you run. It’s an interesting insight in many respects. Bandwidth, and high-speed internet access in general, is a luxury despite how crucial you may think it is in your life. In Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, during dry season they are without electricity 6-8 hours per day.

The high bandwidth in the places below reflect the generally higher standard of living and infrastructure in the places concerned. I still don’t know why Vietnam had such high bandwidth. I presume it was a government initiative to ensure ample bandwidth, which is ironic since they block sites that could foment dissent like Facebook and WordPress.

In places like Cambodia, Laos, The Philippines, Nepal, and India, not only is wifi hard to find, it’s ridiculously slow. It becomes nearly impossible to upload videos to Youtube, for example, and working on blog posts can be frustratingly slow. The chart is a bit skewed by the incredible speeds in Vietnam, but hopefully it still gives an idea.

In Vietnam I switched from using Vimeo (it was too slow outside the U.S.) to Youtube for my video hosting needs because I could upload gigabytes and gigabytes of data in just a couple of hours. In Nepal, I swear the ones and zeros were carried by a series of yaks over the Himalayas and then carried onward by carrier pigeon.

Back in the U.S. I haven’t found the internet here terribly fast, but it’s generally much more available. I was shocked during a recent shopping trip that the two stores I was in offered free wifi to customers. I can’t even find free wifi in cafes in India, for example (though this may have something to do with the rampant security paranoia there).

Anyway, lots of insights and inferences can be drawn from the chart below, covering the past six months. If you’re a geek like me, you might find it interesting. If you’re not, I guess you won’t :). The image below can be clicked to open it to its full size.

Bandwidth Over The Past Six Months

Bandwidth Over The Past Six Months

About Adam Pervez

In mid-2011 I left my cushy corporate job and took the plunge into a life incorporating my passions of traveling, writing, volunteering, learning, educating, and telling stories. I study what happiness means to others, offer what I can from my engineering/MBA background as a volunteer, and try to leave each place better than how I found it. Read more.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Catherine January 9, 2013 at 9:36 am

Thailand is higher than the US? That’s pretty peculiar

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Adam Pervez January 9, 2013 at 9:50 am

It’s all relative. I was in Bangkok. I’m pretty sure NYC has fiber optics everywhere, which would be much faster than what my parents get in suburban NC.

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Maria | Acceleratedstall January 9, 2013 at 8:41 pm

Interesting issues in SE Asia. When I was in Southern Cambodia I had excellent Internet connectivity, wifi AND cell reception. Far better than what I get in the US. My only issues came up when in rural areas or during power outages in Sihanoukville, Cambodia. My wish for you Adam is that 2013 may be the year of excellent connections for you. :-)

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Adam Pervez January 9, 2013 at 8:44 pm

Nice one! Thanks I wish the same for you – lots of connections and greatness in 2013! I didn’t visit Sihanoukville. Maybe they are borrowing some bandwidth from Vietnam down there? :)

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anup gautam January 21, 2013 at 3:46 am

I really like your website and your passion toward voluntering.
Actually i am from nepal.and i work in hotel where adam spent his couple of night..actually, i want to tell you that in Nepal no any company had started their own internet service..for example,in our Hotel we do have a wifi service but the company from where we get the internet is a client..and the main server is in
Sighapore……so may be the nepal itself cannnot produce the internet bindthwith…..and viteniem does

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Passer By February 12, 2013 at 4:55 am

Pretty incisive. Reminds me of when I lived in Nigeria and found much through my child hood, we hardly watched TV, or had access to Computers, but a lot of more jovial/playful experiences than the aspect of my childhood spent in the west.

The little things just arent as big as we make them appear.

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Adam Pervez February 12, 2013 at 5:39 am

Great comment. Thanks for sharing!

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