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FLOW customers to get boost in Internet speed

FLOW customers to get boost in Internet speed
FLOW general manager Wayne Hull


Over 80 per cent of FLOW customers are expected to start seeing improvements in speeds on the broadband networks in their homes.

Wayne Hull, the general manager in St Vincent and the Grenadines, announced on Wednesday that the company’s network had received major upgrades to increase the speed on the broadband packages that are offered.

And the upgrade in speed will not incur any additional cost on one’s Internet bill.

“We have done significant investment in our broadband network where we have invested in core equipment to upgrade the backbone and the work on the outside plan and the development on the nodes in the communities is ongoing but that upgrade has now allowed us to give customers a free upgrade…,” the general manager said.

He said that customers with the Turbo 2 package previously received two megabits of download speed. With the upgrade, this package is now called Turbo 5, offering customers up to five megabits download speed.

Additionally, Hull said that Turbo 12 packages have now been upgraded to Turbo 15, offering 15 megabits of download speed as opposed to the previous 12 megabits.

“Just these two services alone impact about 80 per cent of our customer base so the subscription level to the lower end speeds is still pretty high,” he said.

The general manager said that the major upgrades have helped to remove the congestion that was taking place previously. He said the upgrade to the system took place in mid-September so it was best to give customers some time to experience the better service.

“…We have actually seen the usage on the network increase drastically meaning that persons are able to download more because you will see the spike in the traffic on the network but as we stand today, we do not have a single node – the nodes are what connect to the homes to the core network – congested. So I think it has to give it time for the customer to feel confident to feel well boy, this thing is beginning to operate the way we say it should,” he said.

Hull said that the company has seen the number of faults being reported decrease within the last 30 days.

However, the general manager advised that persons be aware of what their Internet package is capable of.

He said the company also tries to advise customers on the packages they take if they want to do specific things at home using the Internet.

Hull explained that the lower end packages that were upgraded were for small to medium households that do not have many mobile devices hooked up to the Internet.

And he further said that they were ideal for browsing, emailing, online shopping and occasional streaming.

But if an individual had a larger household with multiple devices and required Internet for surveillance cameras, gaming or streaming online TV, then a larger package would be necessary.

“I think sometimes it’s a lack of education as well like the customers do not understand hey, you can’t be streaming and expect to get a steady service with two megabits of service and I think that has been one of the issues that persons don’t understand well, what do I have and what this can do,” he said. “We have been doing a bit of videos of educate people but I guess we have to do a bit more from our side to educate people about the speed but when they come to the store, when they take up the service, the agents always do advise them about hey, you want a Turbo 2, this can only do X.”

The other packages include Turbo 25, Turbo 50 and Turbo 100 with Turbo 100 being the best for hooking up to multiple devices in large households, heavy surfing, video-conferencing applications, downloading and uploading large files, bandwidth-intensive gaming and multimedia streaming.