OfReg creates independent internet speed test

| 10/09/2020 | 46 Comments

(CNS): While there are already dozens of free tools online that allow users to measure their real time upload and download internet speeds, OfReg has created one of its own, allowing it to independently monitor local providers. The creation of the tool cost just over $2,100, officials said, giving the regulator “a transparent and independent means to monitor network upload, download, latency and jitter”, all of which will identify the quality of service being delivered.

“By developing a proprietary tool, OfReg will get a better idea of the metrics at work behind a particular tool and can tailor it to fit the specific characteristics and needs of our industry and networks,” a spokesperson for the office told CNS.

The tool, which launched last month, will give residents and businesses a reliable tool to measure their actual internet speeds to compare with the speeds they are paying for, and therefore recourse to file a complaint if the two don’t match. It is a third-party tool, located at a data centre in Miami, through which 90% of the internet traffic for the Caribbean flows.

Joey Ricard, of Klizo Solutions, who built the speed test system, said it allows users to see the real speed they are receiving, but also collates the results into a database, showing real time information about speed and consistency across multiple tests.

“We also have a traceroute feature that shows a map of how the data is flowing from various locations across the Cayman Islands to the Miami-based server,” he explained.

Before he left the regulator last month, the former executive director for ICT, Alee Fa’amoe, said that sometimes internet issues exist outside the control of the internet service providers (ISPs) but there is occasionally intentional slowing to regulate online traffic.

“This can have costly and frustrating consequences for the consumer, who receives a sub-standard internet service,” Fa’amoe said. “The new speed test will allow us to identify when these actions occur, which will help us protect consumers from ISPs who are failing to deliver what customers and businesses are paying for. Having a complete view of our network, from the end-user perspective, puts the customer at the centre of our actions as we investigate issues and resolve measures in a proactive fashion.”

The OfReg Speed Test can be found here so that customers and ISPs can ensure they are receiving or delivering the contracted bandwidth, latency and quality of service.

Complaints should be directed to complaints@ofreg.ky.


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Category: Business, ICT, utilities

Comments (46)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Uniregistry/OfReg continues to allow CMA to operate a Cayman Islands-base anti-gay web domain which should have long ago triggered several “bannable” parts of their own published and agreed contractual Acceptable Use Policies. Obviously nobody is even checking this stuff. Not just OfReg in the Cayman Islands, Facebook in USA, and with ICAAN, the international web domain register. Blacklisted Cayman Islands, eager to find the next self-inflicted international headline?!?

  2. Anonymous says:

    OfReg is trying to be relevant now, after all the spotlight?! But, with no changes made at Board level, give them a year and they’re back to their old routine of sucking and wasting public funds with no output!! Watch this space!

  3. Anonymous says:

    What do we do when the internet just doesn’t work?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Fa’amoe has left OfReg? Really?

    When did that happen?

    • Anonymous says:

      Probably hired by Dart, given a fancy title and put in a very nice office where no one will see or hear from him again!

      Fitting!

    • Anonymous says:

      Some good technical talent gone there, but, he was known to be a bit of a spender. We’ll probably see some benefits from a reduction in consultancy costs, not to mention the remuneration package that was being paid for that position without much by way of tangible benefits to the public.

  5. Truthsayer says:

    Why??? Why does OfReg blow the people’s money when there are MANY places online who check your upload and download speeds for free?

    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly. I have been checking my speed since 2008.

    • Anonymous says:

      They have actually built one of the better ones; it cost very little; and, most importantly, this is one where they should be able to harvest the service data to see how fast people’s internet really is. So me checking speed.test.Romania doesn’t tell them anything but using their site they now know what my internet speed is really like. Which means there can now be informed debate about internet quality in Cayman.

      • Anonymous says:

        I would agree IF the results were the same using the options available. OfReg shows my download speed at 70mbps and fast.com and speedtest.com both show 100mbps.

        I pay for 100mbps so if I use OfReg’s figure I have a valid complaint against my ISP even though OfReg appears to provide an incorrect result.

        • Anonymous says:

          Companies will use the discrepancies against Offreg. In the end nothing will change. A cynic would say, that this is by Offreg design, create confusion, accomplish nothing, keep your job…

        • Say it like it is says:

          2.44pm I had the same result, Ofreg’s test seems to be reliably inaccurate.

        • Anonymous says:

          try a test on
          http://www.dslreports.com/speedtest

          its much more realistic of real speeds you will actually get

          • Anonymous says:

            I did as you suggested and got 99.5mbps down which is close to the others. I redid OfReg’s and it was off again. So 3 out of 4 are all in line and OfReg is the outlier for me

  6. Anonymous says:

    It’s not speed that’s the issue it’s the absurdly high costs for service.

    Flow Cayman is 3x the cost for internet as Flow Barbados for the same speed packages.

    Difference being in Cayman, Flow is the incumbent and has captured the regulator. Getting it to drag out for three years and finally rule against Digicell’s court case to share facilities and unbundle the last mile (LLU) and arguing recently against more undersea cables etc.

    Whereas, in Barbados, Flow is a challenger entrant and has benefitted massively from the same open regulatory 1st world framework that it has successfully argued against in Cayman.

    And guess what the net result is. Barbados is near the top of regional rankings of average internet speed (despite difficult hilly terrain and lower wages) whilst Cayman is way down the list and you the Cayman consumer gets a lousy deal.

    This exacerbates the digital divide as rich expats can afford the 100mbs+ packages whilst the hourly worker and lower paid civil servant are languishing with single to low double digits

    It also makes it difficult for Cayman to transition to the ICT led economy of the 21st century

    • Anonymous says:

      Go and live in Barbados then.

    • Anonymous says:

      What is the population of Barbados relative to Cayman? have you ever heard of economies of scale? Why do think Northside and East End do not have fibre? The cost sharing burden of bringing that infrastructure to the few people living in those areas would be uneconomical. Quit talking out your … about things you clearly do not understand.

      • Anonymous says:

        Hand clap for that one.. Also ask what would their salary be working in the same capacity in Barbados.. Really sick of comparing Apples to Oranges in this country! Always trying to find something to downgrade or compare with “the better world out there”.. When the borders open buy a ticket.. end of story lol.

      • Anonymous says:

        Maybe you can enlighten me then.

        I read the regulator’s decision against Digicell’s request for LLU from 2015 (see link below) and I couldn’t explain how they thought it contrary to public interest.

        This decision ran counter to over 10yrs of very positive consumer outcomes from LLU in all nearly every region you can think of which tried it.

        Why don’t your read it as well and give me your take on it?

        https://www.ofreg.ky/ict/upimages/commonfiles/1438207916ICT20Decision202015-220and20LLU20Statement.pdf

        • Anonymous says:

          Thanks for sharing that determination. It was certainly eye-opening in respect to the understanding the reason we have such high ICT prices. I was surprised that the ICTA equated redundant capital investment (e.g. parallel fibre deployment) as competitive and in consumers’ interests rather than just a waste of money which would raise the minimum price necessary to provide fibre broadband services. Could you imagine how much cheaper ICT services would be with singular capital infrastructure with investment costs shared by providers in a regulated scheme? They would then just be competing on terminal equipment and service offering, with a dramatically lowered base price. It’s clear that the ICT arm of the regulatory office is incapable of making strong strategic decisions in the long-term interests of consumers.

      • Anonymous says:

        You do realize that Flow is not a local company right?

        They are a subsidiary of Nasdaq listed Latin Liberty.

        Zero incentives to invest/upgrade long term (unless forced by regulator) and every incentive to profiteer and exploit their incumbent monopoly position to pay foreign shareholders dividends

    • Anonymous says:

      Actually, Flow has been in Barbados for as long as Cable & Wireless has been in Cayman.

      • Anonymous says:

        Only in 2015 when they acquired Columbus networks did they start doing ftth products

        • Anonymous says:

          If FTTH is your marker for when a company is in a jurisdiction then Flow hasn’t made it to EE yet. Go re-read the OP and the response again, or ask if you don’t understand what people are speaking of.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Starlink soon come

  8. Anonymous says:

    Offreg reinvents the wheel to save money!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Be interesting to see how this works out. Friends in the UK say the official figures provided by their ISPs are anything up to ten times higher than the actual upload and download speeds they’re getting. Basically, the ISPs seem to be cooking the books.

    • Anonymous says:

      I also have a friend in UK who’s internet is great, until they turn all of the TV’s on, and their Internet goes to a crawl. I’ve had them unplug their TV boxes, and their internet speed got really quick very quickly.

      So why don’t you ask your friends in UK to unplug any TV boxes they have and then test their internet, I believe their internet speed would be way higher after doing that.

      • Anonymous says:

        Checked that for you – no TV boxes, they’re not TV fans, only one set and that’s on Freeview through an aerial! Any more bright ideas?

        • Anonymous says:

          Honestly, nope I only shared what I noticed with my friend in UK who has SkyQ for their internet. The only suggestion I have now is tell them to change their ISP and avoid SkyQ!!! There’s multiple ISP’s in UK so their mileage will vary. Also good on them for not having any TV boxes, I don’t blame them one bit!!! I hope they can get better internet eventually though. I wish your friends the best of luck there!!

  10. Anonymous says:

    How does the new speed test compare to those that are already out there?

    Are we getting the same results?

    ** If so, how was the $2100 spend justified?? **

    • Anonymous says:

      Offreg’s speed test seems to cap out at 50 mbps download and 42.6 mbps download for me.

      Comparing it to speedtest.net and fast.com both of these give me over 200 mbps download and 50 mbps upload. When I’m downloading large files I’m within that 200 mbps speed.

      So I believe Offreg’s speedtest is very inaccurate. And not a true representative of your actual internet speed.

      • Anonymous says:

        I didn’t realize you could get 200 mbps here?

        • Anonymous says:

          Yes, 200 Mbps Internet is available here for the consumer, I believe Flow, Logic and C3 offer Residential Internet packages of 200 Mbps or More, and While I feel that they are a little pricey for my tastes, in a large household that consumes a lot of bandwidth across multiple devices the speed and price is worth it.

          I would also like to share to anyone that is reading this, that your own internet speed in general can actually be affected by your current infrastructure within your home.

          For my case, I’ve noticed after upgrading to 200 mbps with my older existing Wireless router, which only came with 802.11n, When plugged directly in with a cable, I achieved the full speed I was paying for, however over Wireless I seemed to cap out at 90-112 Mbps. When I made the upgrade to my core device infrastructure to support the newer 802.11AC (WiFi 5) and 802.11AX (WiFi 6) Standards, I was finally able to actually get the speeds I was paying for while over a Wireless connection.

          This is something you will need to also consider and plan for when upgrading your own internet plan. Will your existing devices actually support the Internet plan you are paying for.

          I hope sharing my upgrade experience helps someone.

      • Anonymous says:

        I got 4mbps download (yes, four) and 76mbps upload… Home alone, no other devices connected.

        Try speedtest and got 96mbps download.

        Not reliable solution, but what would you expect for 2k? XD

      • Anonymous says:

        Extremely inaccurate and misleading info.. Speedtest.net and fast.com are much better.. Just do a Traceroute to see the many hops the speedtest actually takes before hitting the Miami server. Useless garbage of a test.

  11. Wireless says:

    Looking for relevancy in all the wrong places…

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