Super speed at a super price

They aim to rocket up Internet speeds in Singapore and make the Republic affordable so that the average person can enjoy a high-speed online experience.

On Tuesday, Internet service provider MyRepublic announced the launch of its nationwide 1Gbps broadband services, which will start at as low as $49.99 a month.

In comparison, the three big local telecos, SingTel, StarHub and M1, are offering up to 300Mbps for about the same price - 30 per cent the speed MyRepublic is claiming to offer.

While M1 has a plan that offers about 1Gbps, it has a hefty price tag of $399.

The World Economic Forum ranks Singapore 55th on the list of broadband affordability, far below South Korea and Japan.

MyRepublic seeks to close the gap within a year.

With its 1Gbps at $49.99 a month, Internet speed costs would be at five cents per megabyte - just two cents higher than in South Korea, which boasts the cheapest and fastest Internet in the world.

MyRepublic's CEO Malcom Rodrigues, said its secret to being able to provide cheap and fast Internet is its streamlined operations.


"While our equipment costs are generally higher than the other telcos, our IT systems don't rely as heavily on the human touch, making our operational costs very low," Mr Rodrigues told The New Paper.

MyRepublic has about 15,000 subscribers, but Mr Rodrigues expects it to hit 40,000 by the year's end.

"Our first wave of new customers will be on the more tech-savvy side - people who understand the significance of 1Gbps Internet speeds. But we hope that by word of mouth and recommendation, everyone will see the benefit of 1Gbps at such prices," he said.

Mr Rodrigues said they want to push for a gigabit nation to encourage the development of business models and applications that can take advantage of 1Gbps speeds in Singapore.

"We'd like to turn Singapore into a place where ideas, business models and companies emerge from. Local developers will have an advantage over their foreign counterparts, whose markets lag in connectivity," he said.

Mr Rodrigues reasoned that advancing into a gigabit nation can create new jobs, provide greater attraction for foreign investment and improved public services, leading to an enhanced quality of life for all of Singapore.

To kick-start MyGigNation, MyRepublic is inviting entrepreneurs and developers to submit proposals on what they wish to develop on the MyGigNation network, for a contest they are calling MyGigIdea.

The 10 best applications will be allowed to develop and test their services on the network, and in July, one selected winner will receive $25,000 in marketing support, and be co- marketed with MyRepublic.

As for MyRepublic's recently launched services, Mr Rodrigues estimates that beta testing will be next month and consumer access will start in March.

To celebrate and publicise the launch of its 1Gbps service, MyRepublic has sent a rocket on a truck around Singapore.

It will also be holding its Mega Launch Party over the weekend, which will be from 11am to 9pm tomorrow and Sunday at Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza.

More information on the launch party can be found at

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