TM to expand UniFi coverage in Sabah
KOTA KINABALU: Telekom Malaysia Berhad (TM) will expand its high-speed broadband UniFi coverage to Penampang, Putatan, Keningau, Kota Belud, Lahad Datu and Labuan this year.
Its Sabah general manager Sukkuriya bin Masri said the present UniFi coverage was only concentrated in Kota Kinabalu, Menggatal, Sandakan and Tawau.
UniFi is a broadband service by TM that uses fibre optics to deliver high speed Internet, phone and Internet Protocol television (IPTV) services to customers.
This year, TM is planning to deploy close to 19,000 UniFi ports throughout Sabah, bringing the total to 33,000 ports, in order to make the high-speed Internet service available in Penampang, Putatan, Keningau, Kota Belud, Lahad Datu and Labuan.
Sukkuriya said TM had invested RM75 million in development in the State last year, including maintenance and upgrading works, and is looking at investing RM86 million this year.
Despite its high downloading speed up to 50Mbps, Sabah had only recorded 6,500 UniFi subscribers to date, whereas Streamyx, which can reach a maximum of 8Mbps, has a customer base of 120,000.
Sukkuriya reasoned that the somewhat low UniFi subscription rate was because the service was only offered since October last year.
“We started development (UniFi) in May last year, and finished the developments in stages in August and September.
“We began to offer UniFi in October 2015. We hope to get more subscribers this year,” he said when paying a courtesy call on Kota Kinabalu Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KKCCCI), headed by Datuk Michael Lui here yesterday.
Sukk uri ya added that S tr ea myx would be phased out in stages when the subscribers have converted to UniFi.
“Eventually, we are going to phase out Streamyx because we cannot maintain both (Streamyx and UniFi). It is very expensive.”
On another note, Sukkuriya encouraged businesses to subscribe to TM’s cloud technology as it provides larger bandwidth.
He also advised TM customers to call 100 should they encounter any problems so that the TM operators could conduct testing or checking to resolve the problem right away, if possible.
Sukkuriya added that up to 40 per cent of the problems were resolved this way.
Meanwhile, Lui said the dialogue had provided the chamber with a clearer picture of TM’s future developments, which he hoped could be implemented as soon as possible.
He said the objective of the courtesy call was to strengthen the existing relationship between TM Sabah and KKCCCI as well as enabled the former to update the chamber of its services.
Lui said the chamber realized the importance of leading the Chinese business community in this modern society and thus put in much effort to work closely with the government, government agencies and government related companies.
“KKCCCI, through a wide range of interaction and communication, hopes to improve and enhance the level of service in all areas of commerce and industry to create a better business environment.”
In this technological age, Lui said information and communication had become a basic need in civilized world, where people depended heavily on connectivity, high-speed broadband and wider wireless coverage to have quick access to information.
Therefore, he hoped that TM would understand the feelings of the public and our members when they complained or commented about the speed and unstable broadband Internet speed here.
Nonetheless, Lui believed that TM, being a giant company in Malaysia, would take immediate action to improve and rectify the problems.
KKCCCI had endorsed the motion to urge the Federal Government to improve the Internet services and connectivity in the nation as the Internet services in Sabah was slow, unstable and gets progressively slower according to usage period.
On January, KKCCCI wrote to the Minister of Communications and Multimedia regarding this matter and received a written reply from the Malaysia Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) on March 8, requesting for more information.
In three days, KKCCCI collected the feedback and complaints from its members and submitted the response to MCMC on March 11.
TM Sabah subsequently requested KKCCCI to arrange a courtesy call on March 16, which led to the dialogue yesterday.
A copy of the feedback pertaining to Internet services in Sabah has also been handed to Sukkuriya by Lui.
Also present at the event were TM Regional Network Development general manager Ahmad Zamri Hashim, TM Customer Experience Management assistant general manager Jamil Jamal, TM Consumer Sabah assistant general manager Arif Hj Lakura, TM Business Research and Market Planning Sabah manager Hj Awang Tangah Hj Jaafar, TM Public Relation, Advertising and Promotion Sabah manager Abdul Hadi Hashim, KKCCCI vice presidents William Chia Vui Liam and Chang Chin Shin, welfare director Chao Len Ting, deputy treasurer general Lee Nyuk Chong, welfare deputy director Lo Yun Choi, kindergarten education deputy director Chung Sin Ping, public relations, sports and entertainment deputy director Low Wai Meng, management committee member Szeto Wing Yee, supervisory committee member Chu Kong Ming and executive secretary Tan Kar Seng.
Sukkuriya (seventh left) presents a souvenir to Lui while others look on.