internet technology

It’s not just your network, India’s 4G speed is rubbish

Despite good availability, the country has a dismal download connection speed.

India’s 4G availability is robust, but the data speed is simply painful.

India is ranked 14th in the world for 4G accessibility, according to new research by data analytics firm OpenSignal. Users in India have access to network 86.26% of the time. This ranking is based on 4G data usage on nearly five million devices in 88 countries between October 1 and December 29 last year.

Data: OpenSignal
Data: OpenSignal

However, the country has a dismal download connection speed of 6.07 megabits per second when connecting to long-term evolution networks, a standard for high-speed wireless communication. India’s “4G networks lacked the capacity to deliver connection speeds much faster than 3G technologies,” the OpenSignal report says.

India logged the worst network speed. Data: OpenSignal
India logged the worst network speed. Data: OpenSignal

4G network speeds are affected by a range of factors such as “how much spectrum is devoted to LTE, whether it has adopted new 4G technologies like LTE Advanced, how densely networks are built and how much congestion is on those networks,” the report says. India, unfortunately, is lagging on many of those accounts.

One of the reasons for companies going lax on 4G speeds could be expensive airwaves.

For instance, telecom firms unanimously boycotted the 2016 spectrum auction of the premier 700 MHz spectrum meant for LTE networks. They argued that the base price of the auction, Rs 11,485 crore a unit, was too high.

Besides, few networks implement advanced technology.

“Airtel combines 2300 MHz and 1800 MHz spectrum for LTE-A. New entrant (Reliance) Jio was also reportedly testing this, but there is no official word on this yet,” digital and telecom news site Medianama wrote.

The cheap data boom, courtesy Jio, has only worsened the network congestion – a problem the Mukesh Ambani-led firm is now trying to solve using over 200,000 public wifi hotspots to reduce call drops and improve data speeds.

This article first appeared on Quartz.

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Following a mountaineer as he reaches the summit of Mount Everest

Accounts from Vikas Dimri’s second attempt reveal the immense fortitude and strength needed to summit the Everest.

Vikas Dimri made a huge attempt last year to climb the Mount Everest. Fate had other plans. Thwarted by unfavourable weather at the last minute, he came so close and yet not close enough to say he was at the top. But that did not deter him. Vikas is back on the Everest trail now, and this time he’s sharing his experiences at every leg of the journey.

The Everest journey began from the Lukla airport, known for its dicey landing conditions. It reminded him of the failed expedition, but he still moved on to Namche Bazaar - the staging point for Everest expeditions - with a positive mind. Vikas let the wisdom of the mountains guide him as he battled doubt and memories of the previous expedition. In his words, the Everest taught him that, “To conquer our personal Everest, we need to drop all our unnecessary baggage, be it physical or mental or even emotional”.

Vikas used a ‘descent for ascent’ approach to acclimatise. In this approach, mountaineers gain altitude during the day, but descend to catch some sleep. Acclimatising to such high altitudes is crucial as the lack of adequate oxygen can cause dizziness, nausea, headache and even muscle death. As Vikas prepared to scale the riskiest part of the climb - the unstable and continuously melting Khumbhu ice fall - he pondered over his journey so far.

His brother’s diagnosis of a heart condition in his youth was a wakeup call for the rather sedentary Vikas, and that is when he started focusing on his health more. For the first time in his life, he began to appreciate the power of nutrition and experimented with different diets and supplements for their health benefits. His quest for better health also motivated him to take up hiking, marathon running, squash and, eventually, a summit of the Everest.

Back in the Himalayas, after a string of sleepless nights, Vikas and his team ascended to Camp 2 (6,500m) as planned, and then descended to Base Camp for the basic luxuries - hot shower, hot lunch and essential supplements. Back up at Camp 2, the weather played spoiler again as a jet stream - a fast-flowing, narrow air current - moved right over the mountain. Wisdom from the mountains helped Vikas maintain perspective as they were required to descend 15km to Pheriche Valley. He accepted that “strength lies not merely in chasing the big dream, but also in...accepting that things could go wrong.”

At Camp 4 (8,000m), famously known as the death zone, Vikas caught a clear glimpse of the summit – his dream standing rather tall in front of him.

It was the 18th of May 2018 and Vikas finally reached the top. The top of his Everest…the top of Mount Everest!

Watch the video below to see actual moments from Vikas’ climb.

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Vikas credits his strength to dedication, exercise and a healthy diet. He credits dietary supplements for helping him sustain himself in the inhuman conditions on Mount Everest. On heights like these where the oxygen supply drops to 1/3rd the levels on the ground, the body requires 3 times the regular blood volume to pump the requisite amount of oxygen. He, thus, doesn’t embark on an expedition without double checking his supplements and uses Livogen as an aid to maintain adequate amounts of iron in his blood.

Livogen is proud to have supported Vikas Dimri on his ambitious quest and salutes his spirit. To read more about the benefits of iron, see here. To read Vikas Dimri’s account of his expedition, click here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Livogen and not by the Scroll editorial team.