Patriotism and broadband in Sri Lanka

`Our initial decision to partner with Reliance Globalcom of the Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group to extend the Falcon cable segment from Trivandrum to Colombo was in no small measure motivated by patriotism,` Lanka Bell Managing Director Prasad Samarasinghe said. 

Quote taken from a news report on Lanka Bell’s 3 billion rupee investment to help Sri Lankans surf the web faster.

Now what the devil does patriotism have to do with facilitating broadband connectivity? This imprecise and nonsensical use of language is very telling in a context where telecoms companies, amongst some of the largest corporate entities in Sri Lanka and most valued / traded in the Colombo bourse, regularly bend over backwards to please a government unafraid to tout its own fire brand definition of patriotism. 

However, strip away the rodomontade of the press release and this development is very interesting / exciting. Wonder what offerings Lanka Bell will provide using this new found capacity and more importantly, how the other telcos will respond. I’m sticking with SLT for the moment – it may be annoyingly slow, but I suspect once the lumbering beast starts to move, we’ll see far better data transfer rates and services than the pissant “broadband” we tolerate today.

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