Internet in Singapore
In Singapore, there are 11,512,900 broadband Internet subscribers (as of February 2015). There are three major Internet service providers in Singapore, namely, Singtel, StarHub, and M1 and other growing providers like MyRepublic and ViewQwest. Over the years, the Singapore Government has been promoting the usage of broadband Internet access, as part of its Intelligent Nation 2015 (iN2015) initiative.
Internet access is readily available in Singapore, with connectivity rate of over 99%. Recent surveys have also indicated a significant emotional connectedness between Singaporeans with their internet access.
- 1 Beginnings
- 2 Dial-up access
- 3 Broadband access
- 4 Current developments
- 5 Censorship
- 6 ISPs
- 7 IXPs
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Before the Internet, Singapore was the first country in the world to launch an interactive information service to the public which included photographic images. A service known as Teleview was jointly developed by Telecom Authority of Singapore (TAS) and GEC-Marconi of the UK. The service started trials during late 1987 using specifically designed terminals. This was expanded in 1989, and eventually, as Personal Computers became more capable, there was a software/hardware addition made available for the PC. Early service providers for editorials were Singapore Press Holdings, Housing Development Board and Singapore Stock Exchange, which provided a range of services, including general news, business news, housing lots and selection lists, real-time stocks and shares prices.
Teleview was initially set up as a public service at the same time Singapore Telecom was formed in 1992 from the business arm of TAS, whereas TAS remained as the statutory regulatory authority. Subscribers connected to the Teleview, now-defunct, service by SingTel, via a dialup connection initially by 1200–2400 bit modems (V22 Biz) and then later via 9600-14400 kbit/s modems. Pages with photographic images were sent to the terminal by Full Field Teletext transmissions from dedicated data inserters/UHF TV Transmitters. Subscribers initially paid no time based usage fee for this service. However later charges, on top of telephone line charges were levied. A later development from Teleview provided an interfaced connection to the Internet, subscribers were given access to the Internet via a text-only terminal; email was accessed by Pine, and webpages were viewed by Lynx. Subsequently, Teleview was rendered obsolete, and SingNet started offering to the Internet via SLIP/PPP over modem.
Access to the Internet via Teleview-SingNet evolved to a full-fledged dial-up service known as SingNet, a subsidiary of SingTel. The formerly-private TechNet network was purchased by Pacific Internet. A third ISP was Cyberway; it was eventually purchased by StarHub in 21 January 1999.
In a government-led initiative to connect the island in a high-speed broadband network using various mediums such as fibre, DSL and cable, the Singapore ONE project was formally announced in June 1996, and commercially launched in June 1998. By December 1998, Singapore ONE is available nationwide with the completion of the national fibre optics network.
In 1997, commercial trials for SingTel ATM-based "SingTel Magix" service were undertaken in March, before being launched in June. Also in June, Singapore Cable Vision commenced trials for its cable modem based services, before being commercially deployed in December 1999. Singtel's ADSL service was subsequently rolled out on a nationwide scale in August 2000.
In 2006, M1 introduced its broadband services.
In January 2001, the Broadband Media Association was formed to promote the broadband industry. By April the same year there were six broadband Internet providers, with the total number of broadband users exceeding 300,000. Pacific Internet introduced wireless broadband services in October 2001.
In December 2006, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) introduced a programme named "Wireless@SG". It is part of its Next Generation National Infocomm Infrastructure initiative. It offers everyone free wireless access in high human-traffic areas, including the Central Business District, downtown shopping belts like Orchard Road, and residential town centres. The access speed has been doubled to 1 Mbit/s since 1 September 2009 and once again doubled to 2 Mbit/s in April 2013.The free service will continue until 31 March 2017.
In early September 2010, internet service providers in Singapore rolled out the Next Generation Nationwide Broadband Network (Next Gen NBN) service plans. The Next Gen NBN is Singapore's nationwide ultra-high speed fibre network. It offers pervasive, competitively priced broadband speeds of up to 1 Gbps at comparable prices to ADSL and cable connection. Deployed 75% nationwide as of August 2011, Next Gen NBN is on track to achieve its target of 95 per cent coverage by mid-2012.
In November 2014, ViewQwest unveiled plans for a 2Gbit/s fiber broadband service for households in Singapore, offering the country's fastest internet connection in the market. In March 2015, the service was officially launched making it the world's fastest home broadband plan alongside Japan.
In Singapore, Internet services provided by the three major Internet service providers are subject to regulation by the Media Development Authority (MDA) to block a "symbolic" number of websites containing "mass impact objectionable" material, including Playboy, YouPorn and PornHub.
Optical fibre broadband providers
- NetLink Trust (Formerly OpenNet) (Passive Infrastructure Company ; NetCo ; Wholesale)
- Nucleus Connect (Active Infrastructure Company ; OpCo ; Wholesale) – Commenced Commercial Operations on 31 Aug 2010
- Singtel (Active Infrastructure Company ; OpCo ; Wholesale) – Deployed on 31 Aug 2010
- M1 (Active Infrastructure Company ; OpCo ; Wholesale) – Deployed in Sep 2011
- MyRepublic (Active Infrastructure Company ; OpCo) – Deployed in 2013
- ViewQwest (Active Infrastructure Company ; OpCo ; Wholesale) – Deployed in the 2nd half of year 2010
Retail service providers
- M1 - 100 Mbit/s, 300 Mbit/s, 1 Gbit/s
- Singtel - 200 Mbit/s, 500 Mbit/s, Unlimited (1 Gbit/s) (Released in Aug 2014) 
- StarHub - 100 Mbit/s, 200 Mbit/s, 500 Mbit/s, 1 Gbit/s
- MyRepublic - 1 Gbit/s
- SuperInternet - 100 Mbit/s
- ViewQwest - 600 Mbit/s, 2 Gbit/s (from 2015)
Wireless@SG (Wi-Fi) operators (Free access; Up to 2 Mbit/s)
There are currently multiple Internet Exchange Points available in Singapore, see: Category:Internet exchange points in Singapore
- "IDA: Statistics on Telecom Services for 2015". Retrieved 4 May 2015.
- Tham, Irene. "Hooked, Net and sinker - and loving it". The Straits Times. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
- "StarHub – Revised Draft Submission (04 September 2006)". StarHub. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "S'pore's Broadband Media Association officially launched". CNETAsia. 16 January 2001.
- "Media Centre". Nucleus Connect. Retrieved 19 February 2012.
- "SingTel launches comprehensive suite of entertainment, convergence and productivity applications on high-speed fibre services". SingTel. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
- "Results for nine months ended 30 September 2011" (PDF). M1 Limited. Retrieved 19 February 2012.
- "What is NGNBN". Viewqwest Pte Ltd. Retrieved 19 February 2012.
- "SingTel launches 1Gbps fibre service at $69.90 per month". http://www.straitstimes.com/digital-life/more-digital-life-stories/story/singtel-launches-1gbps-fibre-service-6990-month-2014082.