Tag Archives: Singtel

Rugby World Cup 2011 in High Definition

What a pleasant surprise it was today when I was surfing through the channels on mio TV to find the Rugby World Cup 2011 opening ceremony broadcast in high definition (HD) on channel 111 (3D) mio Stadium.

I had a look at Singtel’s mio TV site and they indeed confirm that they are providing HD coverage.

The Rugby World Cup– LIVE and Exclusive, 9 Sep
Brace yourselves. The toughest competition on the face of the earth is pounding its way onto mio TV. Catch all the bone-crunching action of the Rugby World Cup LIVE and exclusive in HD.

I was so happy when I confirmed that I was going to be able to see the Rugby World Cup 2011 matches on ESPN Star Sports that I forgot to check if there would be an HD channel! Anyway, now I know and thought I would share that with everyone.

That first match is over and New Zealand won quite comfortably, but Tonga could have done a lot better than the 41-10 score line suggests. A few critical errors and Tonga was punished in the first half, but they really lifted their game and made New Zealand look a bit ordinary in the second half.

If you want to make sure you don’t miss a match in HD you can use my list of Rugby World Cup 2011 match times for the Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, China, Taiwan and Hong Kong time zone.



Singapore Broadband Internet Plan Speed Comparison

A fellow forum user, Sunblock, of Xtremeplace.com wrote a post asking about FTP performance with broadband internet fibre plans compared with his existing Starhub Cable 100Mbps plan. I thought that it would be interesting to do a realistic comparison, so I offered to set up a server to allow us to run some performance tests.

I’m on Starhub’s Maxinfinity 100Mbps fibre plan which I find to be quite fast and reliable. I asked for other users who are on M1 or Singtel to join our testing session and received one reply for each service. I also asked a couple of people who were on Starhub’s Maxonline cable plan to run some tests too.

Test Environment

The main objective was to determine the advantage of one plan over another for FTP usage from Singapore to the USA. The easiest and cheapest way I know to get a server in the USA is to use Amazon Web Services (AWS), so I set up a “small” instance running Amazon Linux in the US West region.

After logging on to the server I ran a system update to make sure everything was up to date. I also installed Apache and vsftpd for HTTP and standard FTP testing. A 100MB file was uploaded to the server and placed in the correct directories for HTTP, FTP and SFTP testing.

Finally, I distributed the key files to the testers to enable SSH and SFTP connections.

Tests

1. Download 100 MB file via SFTP.

2. Download 100 MB file via FTP.

3. Download 100 MB file via a web browser (HTTP).

Results

Plan SFTP FTP HTTP
Starhub 100Mbps Cable 320 KB/s 370 KB/s 50-80 KB/s
Starhub 100Mbps Fibre ~300 KB/s 239-255 KB/s 2.50-6.4 MB/s
M1 50Mbps Fibre 220 KB/s N/A 70 KB/s – 1.4 MB/s
Singtel 200Mbps Fibre 450 KB/s N/A 300 KB/s
Starhub 100Mbps Cable N/A N/A 50-70 KB/s
AWS Singapore 2.3 MB/s N/A 2.47-2.6 MB/s

Note: The upload speed via SFTP was 254 KB/s from my home PC running Filezilla. FTP tests were added at a later time, so only two people completed them.

Running through the results:

Sunblock’s 100Mbps Maxonline Cable plan offers consistent SFTP and FTP performance, but the HTTP performance is simply shocking.

My own Starhub Maxinfinity fibre plan offers consistent SFTP and FTP performance, but screams along for HTTP. In fact the 2.50 MB/s was a one off and all the other tests were in the 6 MB/s range. I thought that this could be due to some local caching, but then surely the cable plans would also get this benefit.

The M1 fibre plan has the slowest SFTP performance and can get up to reasonable HTTP speeds, but seems rather inconsistent.

Singtel’s 200Mbps fibre plan offers the best SFTP performance amongst the local providers, but it’s still not fantastic. The HTTP performance is poor in comparison with the other fibre plans.

To confirm Starhub’s abysmal HTTP performance on its cable plans I contacted two other people who both averaged 50-70 KB/s.

My AWS server in Singapore (micro instance), returned a healthy SFTP result, but couldn’t match my own HTTP performance on Starhub’s fibre plan which I was quite surprised at.

Conclusions

Given the huge difference between the SFTP result on my AWS server in Singapore and all other tests I am guessing that the local ISPs are engaging in network shaping for both SFTP and FTP. This is also reinforced from running the SFTP test repeatedly and seeing  close to 300 KB/s each time on my own computer.

HTTP performance on the other hand shows dramatic differences across technologies and providers. Starhub’s cable plans have terrible HTTP performance, while their fibre plan is great. Singtel’s performance was particularly disappointing, especially given it is from a 200 Mbps plan.

In the end there doesn’t seem to be much point for Sunblock to move to a fibre based plan from any of the local providers. His cable plan performs within the same range or better than the fibre plans for FTP, which is his main concern.



Rugby World Cup 2011 – ESPN Star Sports Awarded Television Rights for Asia

Finally some official confirmation on the Rugby World Cup 2011 web site about the television rights for Asia!

When I was signing up for Singtel’s mio TV I read a brochure confirming the Rugby World Cup 2011 would be available on the service. I’d also seen a few hints on the web in other places (including ESPN’s web site), but there was nothing official announced on the Rugby World Cup 2011 web site until now.

ESPN Star Sports will broadcast all the matches to Singapore, China, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, Korea, Laos, Macau, Mongolia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, Philippines and Vietnam.

There is also a mention of some supplementary broadcasting:

Live TV coverage on ESPN STAR Sports’ networks will be supplemented with dedicated streaming and video on demand through ESPN Player and MobileESPN in Singapore and weekly highlights programming in several territories.

The first game is on September 9, so if you don’t have the right cable TV plan, now is the time to sign up for ESPN Star Sports to make sure you don’t miss any of the games!

I’m happy to finally get the confirmation, but I’m surprised it has taken this long. Especially considering I did see the brochure (back in April) that said the Rugby World Cup 2011 would be on mio TV. In any case it’s now resolved and I’ll be sitting down to watch the first game with the All Blacks taking on Tonga on ESPN Star Sports!