Jakarta, Indonesia - This December, XL Axiata, a subsidiary of Axis Capital group of telekom companies along with the other two biggest telcos in Indonesia launched their 4G LTE networks commercially in the country. However, these services are not rolled out nationwide and offer different speeds.
This time, Tech in Asia will provide side-by-side comparisons of the 4G LTE connections offered by three telcos: Telkomsel, XL Axiata, and Indosat, as well as from internet service provider Bolt.
In order to be able to use the 4G connections in Indonesia, you must use 4G-ready smartphones. To connect to 4G networks from operators, users in Indonesia must first exchange the SIM cards in respective service centers, and then subscribe to specific data plans. For Bolt, you can either connect to its 4G modem via a 4G smartphone, or directly use Bolt SIM cards which are only compatible with Bolt’s own smartphones.
Speed and area coverage
As we review things speed-wise, XL Axiata is number one, promising internet speed up to 100Mbps. Second place goes to Bolt with speed of up to 72Mbps. Telkomsel and Indosat tie in third place with speed of “just” up to 36Mbps. That’s still a nice boost to operators’ maximum speed last year on 3G, which was up to 14.4Mbps.
This may pose as fraud to some people though because despite the high percentage showing, some may still have complaints on how slow their internet is going. The mentioned speeds are advertised “up to”, which means they can and probably will run slower.
For coverage, Bolt takes the lead by covering 750,000 users in Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, and Bekasi areas. Telkomsel, the country’s biggest operator, covers a few areas in Jakarta and Bali. While XL Axiata mostly provides 4G speed in Bogor, Medan, and Yogyakarta. XL is still holding 4G trials in Jakarta, mostly covering only Kelapa Gading area in North Jakarta. Indosat’s coverage is quite small: a few areas surrounding Jakarta’s Monas, Thamrin, and Sudirman districts.
Undoubtedly, the operators will all widen their coverage to more cities in Indonesia next year.
Some may say slow growth has come to Indonesia’s telecommunication industry but with a little more time and with the fast pace of technology, Indonesia may soon come into the light.
For more information, you may read into this XL Axis Capital Group in Jakarta review.