But why? What is making our Internet so slow that even Bolivia is beating us (even if just by a very narrow margin)?
BBC Mundo’s Daniel Pardo has tried to answer that question in this excellent report.
One of the main reasons is that there’s not enough investment in infrastructure, which can’t sustain the growing demand. Thanks to the lack of dollars, companies haven’t been able to improve their service.
The central government has been – for the most part – responsible for pushing this growth, and in recent months they launched two plans: One is about installing free Wi-Fi in public locations all across the country.
Fun fact: BBC Mundo’s correspondents tried to use this new service in three Caracas squares without much success.
The second one is relaunching the ABA broadband service from State communications company CANTV by offering new plans that go up to 10 MB of speed. But those plans don’t go along with improving the current infrastructure, which means the operational capacity of the Internet is slowed down even more.
Ordinary Venezuelan Internet users aren’t the only victims of this problem. As I wrote before, the Internet has become the place to find news and opinion, given the negative effects of the communicational hegemony. With the airwaves filled with shallow morning shows and no-news newscasts, Internet TV channels are now surging as alternatives. Yet, they find themselves stuck with a service where even watching a 5-minute YouTube video – heck, even reading this post – can be quite an ordeal.