Broadband, Syria: The Dream!

13 05 2008

I can’t help but wonder everyday about the future of the Internet here in Syria.

Currently, I’m using a monthly flat-rate modem connection to get access to the outside world. And today I stumbled upon this article, which discusses the broadband initiative in the USA. And they are quite angry because they are actually falling BEHIND in the worldwide broadband race!

The very same article is listing France as one of the world’s leaders in broadband spread. Some of the ISPs there are constructing THEIR OWN fiber networks, which led to a DSL price drop all the way down to $20/mo for a 20Mbps ADSL2+ connection!

So, according to my modest calculations (taking the average income rate in Europe into consideration), the DSL subscriber is paying ~2% of his monthly income for broadband access. Which translates to approx. 160 Syrian Pounds for the Syrian subscriber (assuming an income rate of 8000 S.P a month)! Let’s not forget that this is for a 20Mbps connection.

I’m not trying to compare my country to European countries, because I know we don’t have their financial/cultural capabilities. This post is just a reminder for the Syrian people to know how much we are falling behind in the global Internet domain.

This gap is causing lots of losses. As the Internet is growing larger and more important each day, it’s becoming the master mainstream method of communication, competing with telephone lines. And if we don’t speed up the work to close this gap, we’ll be cut out from the world in terms of communication, and we’ll lose a huge amount of productive time only because we can’t get the information we want as fast as other people in Europe or Asia.

I don’t know how to further explain the importance of the Internet in the upcoming years. But I CAN help to raise a voice of concern to those who make the decision, and I hope all of you do the same, and take your part to spread the word and educate other people about the Internet and its capabilities, in the hope of making the Syrian Broadband Dream become a reality..




6 responses

21 06 2008

Hi there,

glad to find another interesting blog with Syrian topics. The small numbers of them are telling about the gap of communication, too. As for information from Syria to Europe, we’d all gain from narrowing the gap.
Greetings from Germany

21 06 2008
Kinan Debes

Thanks Taide.. I’m glad you find my blog interesting.

I know that closing the technology gap would prove useful to both sides. Because it would open new windows of opportunities for trade, tourism, and other business models.
But however, the gap is hurting Syria the most. Especially in the current political situation, I think we REALLY need to open up to the world in order to explain ourselves better. Our media (actually, the whole Arab media) is weak, and insufficient. Therefore it’s very important to find new ways of communication. The Internet itself is one of them. And that’s why I’m trying to do my part to encourage Internet access here.

Thanks for your comment.

30 06 2008

I am planning to come and live soon to your beautiful country (I have visited it already and we LOVED it)
I live in the Uk and our family could not cope without ADSL connection and a router because we have several computers. Could you let me know, if you do not mind: how much would I need to pay per month to get a decent ADSL connection without proxies? Thanks a lot in advance.

30 06 2008
Umm Muhammad

Hello there
I am planning to come and live in your country soon. (We have visited Syria once for three months and these are my best memories ever, compared to Egypt and Lebanon!!).
I live in the Uk and there is no way our family could cope without an ADSL connection (I know it sounds a bit weird to write that but it is true).
Therefore, can I ask you a question? How much do you pay a month to get ADSL connection at home? Im intending to live in Damascus, are there places there where I wont be able to get a connection? I have to say I will choose our flat or house specifically depending on whether we can get access or not so it’s quite important… And also : do you have limitations and proxies form your house or are those limitations removed? Thanks a lot to take the time to answer those questions. Your blog is quite interesting by the way.

1 07 2008
Internet Access In Syria, F.A.Q. « G-FloX

[…] 1 07 2008 This post was originally intended as a response to comments on a previous post Broadband, Syria: The Dream. But I found it to contain lots of useful information (especially to foreigners) that I found it […]

1 07 2008
Kinan Debes

Hi Sunnite & Umm Muhammad, and welcome to Syria.
I wrote the answers to your questions in a separate post, to provide the information to a wider audience.
Kindly check it here: Internet Access In Syria, F.A.Q.

Please don’t hesitate to ask any other questions you may have, and I’ll try my best to respond. Here’s the link to the Syrian Ministry of Tourism’s official website, it contains lots of information about Syria: Syrian Ministry of Tourism.

Thanks, and I hope you enjoy your stay in Syria.

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