Months ago,U Mobile started to share with Maxis for its infrastructure in order to expand its 3G network to nationwide.Since then,the 3G coverage on U Mobile in West Malaysia came to be good.Well,recently it started the expansion in East Malaysia and the major cities and towns there had 3G service already.
U Mobile’s 3G network supports up to 42Mbps DC-HSPA+ .The collaboration with Maxis will let U Mobile expand faster and save more capital.I believe it will also benefit on deploying 4G LTE network which U Mobile maybe will start the service in the year.
Anyway,as a user of U Mobile,I feel some service downgrade in terms of speed and downtime.I hope they could improve the service continuously with the growth of the number of users and don’t let me down.
In the past several weeks,quite a number of U Mobile users complained about the slow speed of network.Some people said that the ISPs in Malaysia always did like that-good at the beginning and turning to be worse and worse till the end.
Well,U Mobile is approving that they are not like that.The speed in many areas has been improving dramatically and even better than before.Therefore,I guess the service downgrade was because of the upgrade work doing during that period.
According to my recent tests,I could get more than 2-3Mbps(more than 4Mbps at midnight) for download and 1.5Mbps for upload when I was travelling along old Klang road;at the same time,I tested the speed on DiGi network and only got 500Kbps for download and 120Kbps for upload.
As a new mobile service company,they’re doing great.Of course,they also have a long way to go,such as expanding 3G service area,enhancing their customer service quality and support special code message etc.I’ll be keeping eyes on them.
The latest promotion from Umobile was just popped out 2 days ago.It’s buy one free one promotion with Nokia X3/E5.
You could choose either Nokia X3/E5 as your primary phone and pay as retail price when you subscribe U Value/Plus/Premium postpaid service.Umobile will rebate the subsidies to you over the contract period.
After that,you could get a free Nokia X3 with subscribing U38 plan and pay an upfront payment by credit card with auto debit(RM380) or by cash(RM500).The upfront payment will be in full over 10 months.
I think that’s a quite good deal for somebody who is not willing to get those advanced and expensive smartphones(iPhone,Android phones etc).Are you interesting on them?
I’ve used Umobile‘s service for 3 weeks.The overall experience is quite good,however,there are still some spaces to improve.
1.Umobile is not supporting 5-digit special number.
Many banks and government services use special 5-digit to communicate with existing stakeholders.Well,I find that I can’t send through sms to 39222 to make complaint to Sysbas or 32300 to OSK investment bank alerting service.It could cause some inconvenience to me and I’ve realized that I’m not alone as quite a number of Umobile customers complained about it before.I hope Umobile could support 5-digit special number as soon as possible.I think it’s essential work to be completed by a qualified mobile service provider.
2.Umobile has an inefficient hotline in the night time.
I called Umobile hotline 0183881318 at around 10pm several days ago.I hold the line for 1 hour and the voice in the phone was keeping saying that all operators were busy at the moment.I’m wondering whether they have officers providing service during the night.Good thing is the hotline line is free of charge.However,my time is valuable too.
3.Data roaming in Celcom 2G network always had problems.
I feel glad that finally Umobile users(not U broadband users) could enjoy data roaming on Celcom 2G network now.Unfortunately,it does not run well at the moment.I tried to get 2G data connection when travelling to outstations,sometimes if I was lucky enough,I could get EDGE connection although the speed is slow,but better than nothing.However,I was not always that lucky,7 over 10 times,I failed to get 2G data connection.I tested in my Nexus One and Nokia 5800XM,all show the same issues.In this case,I’m not alone too.I know many Umobile users face the same problem too.
I heard that Umobile is targeting to be one of the mainstream mobile service provider in Malaysia by 2012.Well,without solving the above issues,that could be only in a dream.Wake up,Umobile!
I registered a Umobile prepaid SIM pack online days ago.Today,through days of delay(the carrier service used by Umobile is lousy),I received it.I topped up RM30 and got another RM4.5 bonus.I applied unlimited mobile Internet costing RM28 for 30 days and started to test the speed.
I did all tests on speedtest.net by Nexus One in my home.The average download speed is around 2000Kbps which is really awesome;However,the upload speed is only around 80-100Kbps,that’s sad.
I could receive 3G signal at home.With my own experience,Umobile has the strongest signal in my home among Maxis,DiGi and itself.The call quality is also pretty clear.So I will keep trying the service from Umobile.If it’s quite ok,I will keep using it and cut the existing service from DiGi.
Yesterday I went out gathering with friends and at that indoor place,the 3G signal was quite bad,only 1 bar left.At a very first time,my phone switched to Celcom 2G network.I made a quick test on it in terms of download and upload speed in EDGE.The result is:
Average download speed:200Kbps
Average upload speed:80Kbps
It’s still usable,but you can’t hope more than that.
Need to stress here that Umobile allows its mobile service users to have data roaming on Celcom network,unfortunately U Broadband users can’t do that.Maybe they don’t want to mess up the 2G network.
So my conclusion is,Umobile is working fantastically,at least for now.
I used to be a Maxis user for years,however,at the beginning of introducing 3G service years ago,Maxis looked like not paying too much effort on improving the call quality at that time,I decided to change to DiGi which could provide a cheaper rate,quite stable download speed(not meaning fast-normally capped under 1Mbps) with not-so-good call quality.
After a large number of investments setting up more 3G cell towers and expanding the coverage both outdoor and indoor,the quality for voice and data service on both networks should be better.So in this morning,I made a group of simple speed tests to see which one has a better 3G network.Please see the comparison:
Today maybe is a crazy day for Malaysia’s mobile service providers.In the morning I just blogged about Umobile RM28 prepaid data+voice plan,later I received the news about Celcom updated Xpax prepaid plan offering 28cen for every 10 minutes talking time in the same network or for every 5 minutes talking time in different network.
It’s really good for those people who like to have a long conversation on their mobile phones.I feel that as the mobile market in Malaysia is already saturated,mobile service providers start to reduce the rates to attract more potential customers to take their services.
I think DiGi is the one suffer the most in this battle because most of their customers are low-mid class who are quite concerning about the rates.I’m interested in how DiGi will fight against the competitors.Will it be the smarter choice?Let’s wait and see.