Already Officially Opened, the Government Offers “Sky Toll” to Telecommunications Operators

The backbone or backbone of the Palapa Ring national optical fiber network was inaugurated to operate on Monday (10/14/2019). Although it is not automatic internet access in 514 regencies / cities in Indonesia is equally equal. In this case, the government must first offer this fiber optic network to be connected to the telecommunications operator’s base transmission station (BTS).

Anang Achmad Latif as the Managing Director of the Telecommunications and Information Accessibility Agency (BAKTI) of the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (Kemenkominfo) of Indonesia stated that the operation of the Palapa Ring, also known as the “sky toll”, constitutes 80 percent of the efforts to equalize telecommunications access. While 20 percent is the domain of telecommunications operators.

“The concept in the telecommunications sector is that each cannot work alone. Especially in resolving this issue of inequality. The government finally built the toll road, 80 percent of the problems have been resolved. We only have 20 percent to talk to Telkomsel, talk with other cellular operators, other internet operators, “explained Anang in a discussion entitled ‘Calculating the Impact of the Palapa Ring’ by the West 9 Independence Forum in Jakarta, Tuesday (10/15/2019).

He explained, actually this network problem was once the operator’s task to solve it. But apparently when Telkom was privatized into a public company, this government goal could not be fully implemented by Telkom. As a result the government entered to complete this homework through BAKTI.

Anang said, in a discussion conducted with the operator, it was known the cause of the inaccessibility of the eastern regions of Indonesia with telecommunications signals. This is because the costs required to deploy fiber optic networks to these areas are fairly large. Especially in the effort of connectivity must cross the ocean and pass through difficult terrain.

“That costs extraordinarily, they have to lay out cables across the ocean. The cost can be three to four times compared to if we hold a cable on land, “he explained.

Departing from this problem, the government finally made a project scheme called Palapa Ring. Through this project, at least the government made its first toll road for the network. So that when the toll road in question is completed, all that remains is the role of the operator to connect it to the BTS so that it can be enjoyed by the community.

“So this Palapa Ring has not yet finished completing until it has prepared a signal to the community. But how was the toll road there first. Just how to connect with the operator’s BTS, “said Anang.

So now the government offers the toll road to operators to be able to continue their connectivity. Because after this toll road is finished, then there are only problems at the end that must be completed. In this case the government cooperates with the operator.

Anang said, if this network has been connected to the operator, then equality will occur for all regions in Indonesia. Communities in other regions of Indonesia, especially in the eastern region, can get internet access speed as in Java.

“There it can be imagined when there is no Palapa Ring network, let alone images, text only sometimes takes (sent) a long time. Hopefully with this we and the operator can completely finish the signal to high speed, “he hoped.

This equalization, continued Anang, has indeed become the most important goal of the Palapa Ring. Namely how to present a 4G signal to remote to all districts / cities in Indonesia. The second goal is how operators can later utilize and sell their services at affordable prices.

“Now when compared to prices it might not be different between Java and other regions. Even if it’s different, it’s not much different. But the speed obtained is different, “explained Anang.

“There, some are also in the mountains, maybe writing 4G (service), but sending images half to death. This is an imbalance that must be resolved immediately. So the price will also be of better quality, the price will also be more affordable, ”he continued.

The next goal of the Palapa ring is how its use can be of positive benefit to the community. Anang believes that for this purpose, it cannot be resolved either by the Ministry of Communication and Information and the operator itself. But it also depends on how the community work around this.

“How can this utilization when the internet is present in your hand, can be positive. Because this business is a multiple-dimensional affair. “How do people deal with it? Don’t let the internet be like a double-edged knife, it’s used for negative things, but how can it have a positive impact,” concluded Anang.

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