Mostly Everything

P50.00 a day can get you a Netbook and Home Internet

Yesterday we asked you how far your P50.00 a day could go. We mostly talked about apps you can download from the iTunes store but really, an app is an app … is an app! So the word’s out today. The PLDT-Smart group have released a new home office promo which sounds mighty attractive: for PHP 50.00 a day you can get WiMax in your home plus a Neo Netbook.

Here are the plans:

PHP 999 Canopy / Wimax + PHP 500 = Php 1,499 / mo for a Neo Netbook
PHP 999 Canopy / Wimax + PHP 800 = Php 1,799 / mo for an Acer Netbook

For more details you can follow @PLDThome on Twitter and check out their unlimited Internet + Netbook bundle.

This is a steal if you’re really on a budget but need to get a home workstation going as soon as possible. We have no word about the exact model of the netbooks but I will surmise that it is probably one of these. I have had the opportunity to review Neo-branded netbooks and generally speaking, they perform at par with other brands. You also get that added patriotic flag for choosing Pinoy-made!

Do yourself a favor: if you think this this promo is epic, do inquire first about the signal strength in your area. At everything constant, the 2Mbps signal is pretty stable and enough to get you through all your Internet needs.

N.B. PLDT is an advertiser on this blog.

Mostly Everything

Geeky things you can buy for P50.00

When Apple revamped the music industry with single track purchases for less than P50.00 per track, that changed the way people sold applications and in-app purchases. It’s essentially the “tingi” method turned into a digital business. Now there’s a huge product launch tomorrow but all we can say is that it has something to do with the power of P50.00.

In the digital age, there are surprisingly a lot of things you can buy with fifty pesos. Here are some examples:

2,500 Coins in Temple Run

A definite chart topper on iOS devices, I still have no idea how people can score over 3,000,000 points in a single run. But I do know this — if you’re really frustrated and want to earn those coins without any effort, you can always drop $0.99 for 2,500 coins to help you buy upgrades for your brave explorer.


Streets of Rage 2

Streets of Rage 2 has my childhood written all over it. It’s become one of the defining games of its genre, released way back in the 90’s for the SEGA Genesis. And guess what? It’s here for iOS for less than fifty pesos. That’s totally awesome. I’m reliving an epic two-player side scrolling beat ’em up experience with Axel, Blaze, Skate and Max as they take on Shiva and Mr. X. Streets of Rage 2 is a complete port to iOS. It even includes multiplayer support via wireless connectivity.

Two Games of Half Life 2: Survivor

I now have a new reason to head over to Resorts World and it has nothing to do with the casino. The new “Gamezoo” arcade is a two-storey haven for a lot of coin-op arcade machines that are practically hard to find. Case in point: Half Life 2: Survivor. This arcade series was never released in the USA and quite frankly I’m baffled as to how Gamezoo even knew that this game existed. It’s out and it’s in Resort’s World. A single game costs P20.00. Half Life 2: Survivor is a marriage between Team Fortress 2 and the Half Life franchise allowing up to 8 players to battle simultaneously in a single arena.


These are just three cheap (and geeky) thrills you can get with PHP 50.00. What about you? What are your most favorite apps that retail for less than a dollar?

Mostly Everything

Mbps is not Megabytes per second but “megabits” per second

N.B. If you’re knowledgeable about this subject, please leave a comment to refute or add to this post as we’re all trying to understand what makes good or crappy Internet.

One of the biggest confusions of consumers when purchasing Internet plan subscriptions is that they think Mbps means megabytes per second when in fact it means “megabits per second” and there’s a huge difference. It’s partly the telcos’ fault as they aren’t very gung-ho about these educational campaigns for consumers. I think they should start helping consumers understand what exactly “2Mbps” means in the real world application. Also they should start including a value called CIR or Committed Information Rate or the average bandwidth per x number of households in a given area. Now that’s useful!

Here’s a tool to help you calculate ideally how many kbps you should be getting with your Internet provider commitment.

In other words, if your telco is selling you a 2Mbps connection, your ideal burst speed (say you’re downloading a torrent) should peak at around 250KBps (that’s kilobytes per second not kilobits per second — remember that kbps is kilobits and KBps or KB/s is kilobytes). But that’s the best speeds. I don’t think it takes into account CIR. So if I’m using my Android phone on HSPA to tether Internet to my laptop and I’m getting 60-120KBps (which I got in Palawan since I’m probably not exceeding the CIR, but not in Manila which is definitely more dense), then it really could mean that my telco is delivering actual average speeds. Please, telcos, I think we should level up the way we communicate our Internet-related products as we move on to 4G technology! 🙂

Mostly Everything

How to toubleshoot and increase PLDT myDSL speeds

Here are some tips I’ve put to practice throughout the 30 months I’ve availed of PLDT myDSL service. The signal used to be excellent when the cluster in Paranaque was still more or less free. As service widens, a few quirks can happen. Interesting enough – sometimes it may not even be the fault of the ISP, but has something to do with a few factors in your home.

Too late the hero for this post? Search the web and everyone’s written about Internet problems. Anyway, I decided to write this after one of my business contacts interviewed me over the phone about DSL / WiFi services in the Philippines and asked, “why haven’t I shared these before?”

OK, time to share.

Have your physical line checked. If your DSL line falters especially with the coming rains, it could be that the box outside your house had water seep through. When was the last time you checked the physical line as well? Every so often we have an electrician come over to check the resilience of the wiring.

When was the last time you changed your modem? Some PLDT myDSL modems are OBSOLETE. If your physical line is OK and you’re experiencing problems, the error could actually be the modem itself. I had my modem changed twice because the first one was, OBSOLETE, as advised by the certified electrician from PLDT. Signal kept on dying. He even told me that they’re passively tracking subscribers who have old modems (they only come if you complain). If your modem heats up quickly, it is also a bad sign (my second change). I’m sharing this to my readers because I had 2 modem changes within 2 1/2 months early this year. Ever since, things were fine and dandy. Again – CALL.

Are you on a legacy server cluster? Hah, this is probably the best trick I learned. For old subscribers, your account may actually be on a legacy server. What I did, about 4 months ago was to call PLDT myDSL and have them transfer my account to a new cluster (I forgot the exact name). Guess what? My connection throttled after 20 minutes.

Don’t forget your DNS settings!