Internet Speed in Pakistan Plunges Due to Fault in Submarine Cable

If you are facing slow internet speeds in Pakistan then you aren’t alone. Almost whole of Pakistan — including 3G users — are impacted with slow internet speeds due to a fault that is developed in SEAMEWE4, one of the the major submarine cables that connect Pakistan with rest of the internet.

According to sources, the fault is of physical nature and occurred near Karachi in the sea. Officials said that location has been identified however rectification efforts are taking longer than what officials had expected earlier.

Sources at PTCL — which relies heavily on SEAMEWE4 — confirmed the issue and said that since the time taken for restoration of SEAMEWE4 is taking longer than they had earlier thought, bandwidth is now being shifted to other submarine cables to make sure that country’s demands are met adequately.

Sources said that complete restoration of SEAMEWE4 could take a couple of weeks, and until then the bandwidth reliance on back-up submarine cables will be enhanced. During this, internet users may face degraded download/upload speeds.

Latency rates are going to remain high during this window, while pages may not load at all. Reloading of the pages is advised, while unnecessary high-rate data consumption is also not recommended.

Update 1:

25 June, 2015 – 7:30: IMEWE cable has also been damaged to add up more problems for ISPs in arranging backup bandwidth.

  • New IMEWE Outage: 110 Gbps
  • Ongoing SMW4 Outage: 178 Gbps
  • Total Unavailable Bandwidth: 288 Gbps

Pakistan has a total of 360 Gbps bandwidth, out of which only 72 Gbps is available right now.

ISPs are in the process of rerouting bandwidth but it will take time (a few hours at the very minimum). After this new development, it’s going to be a few days before normal service is resumed.

Update 2:

26 June, 2015 – 01:15 AM: One of the impacted cable IMEWE, that had double cuts on two pairs near Egypt, has been restored to full capacity now. Restoration of IMEWE has added 110Gbps of internet bandwidth back online in Pakistan, while SMW4 (that contributes 178Gbps of bandwidth) is still offline and work is in progress.

PTCL, in a press statement, said that work on SMW4 is in progress, however, no ETR was shared with the press.

GM Media Communications of Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL), Imran Janjua, said, “Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) by virtue of its investments in diversified International Submarine Cable systems, has already undertaken necessary measures to provide internet connectivity to its customers across Pakistan.  However, due to the fault in this undersea cable, the internet users may experience slow browsing during this period.”

Our sources suggest that complete restoration of SMW4 may take few days, however, with IMEWE cable back online, internet speeds will get better in the country.

Tech reporter with over 10 years of experience, founder of ProPakistani.PK


    • Bill pura speed adhi… mere sath pichle 2 mahiney se 2 mb package pr yeho ho rha tha :( complain ka koi faida nahi… ab mene package hi 1 mb krwa liya. Muft k 250 rupey dene se tou bcha..

      • Why not you don’t use 3G? It’s much cheaper than PTCL. Better packages, better speed!! Perhaps, the reason is that it offers unlimited downloading, doesn’t it?

        • Aamir, Telenor speed is dead too, it was over 10mbps for months, but suddenly from 1st Ramazan, it hardly goes over 1mbps :( Any news on it?

          Area = G1 Market, Johar Town. Lahore

          • Wow, I live in the same area as you (the international school next to G1 Market). The internet speed has been low ever since I came here and started using the net. PTCL speed – no more than 1,5 Mb… Terrible, back at home (abroad) I have an average speed of 100 Mb and it’s CONSTANT, not inconsistent like here (one time 1 Mb, then all of a sudden 0,1 Mb, then again 1 Mb..).. What’s wrong with the net over here?? :( I’ve been to about 50 countries in the world – the net is slowest here and in West Africa (Togo, Benin)..

        • bhai 3g har jaga available nahi hai upar se 1 or 2gb packages hain 3g mai affordable wo heavy downloads ke liye acha nahi parta, for example this month i downloaded about 150+gb data,,,no 3g network is offering such packages in 2000 rupees plus we can also use wifi service as well in home so that is why many users are using 3g for lightwieght use and ptcl for heavy downloads like torrents…

          • LOL!! The above offer is available on Telenor 3G only at Rs.1500+Rs.400 Tax (Unlimited), don’t you know? You can download unlimited after consuming Rs.50 and Rs.200 daily via Telenor 3G and Warid 4G respectively. Telenor is the best at providing packages to beat PTCL. Here is another how to! You can download 9GB of Data only at Rs.400 for the entire month via Telenor 3G along with Rs.600 free balance. Need more?

                • 200 wali cheez dara rahi he XD
                  thora sasta nahi ho skta??? 6000 rupey 4g k liye thora mehenga lgta he XD

                  • Paa G! Wake at 12:01AM and do the package! Make a long list which you want to download on IDM or torrent above 1TB. :D Make use of the IDM scheduler, set it to 3 download at the same time and click on “Start Now” Sleep at 12:10AM :). Take a sleeping pill and wake at 11:59PM. I hope all the stuff will be downloaded before the time :) It’s better do it on laptop, must be on charging!! Got It? :D

                    • How can i get warid 4g unlimited for 200 ? What is the package for 1 day unlimited? I can’t find one

                    • It’s not a package, brother! Rather it’s called a default package. It means in order to apply the package, Rs.200 must be in your account and consume the money via web surfing on 4G LTE. The package will be applied automatically after consuming! Now, Enjoy! :D

                    • So i have to use rs 200 until balance is zero then i will get unlimited data ? Is that what you saying ?

                    • Warid Unlimited 4G LTE at Rs.200 Per Day’s Method

                      It’s very easy, Man! I’ve described it many times below! First of all, Rs.200 must be in your account. It’s worth mentioning that if you have a thousand rupees in your account after consuming Rs.200 more money will never be deducted, and after consuming Rs.200 you can download unlimited on Warid 4G LTE. Moreover, it’s not a package rather a default package!

                    • Amir Brother, can you let me know > How to avail Warid Unlimited 4G bundle in 200 per day ?
                      How to subscribe this package ?

                    • Lol nice strategy… will use it once i buy a laptop with the required 1 TB hard drive XD

            • Bhai thoda sa is ko describe karainge, this looks really interesting to me, yeh kaunsa package hai?

              Here is another how to! You can download 9GB of Data only at Rs.400 for the entire month via Telenor 3G along with Rs.600 free balance. Need more?

              • First of all I want to tell you, Aap Ki Har Baat Dil Ko Lagti Hai, Masoon Sa Andaaz!! Mosoom Si Baatain!! Hye Hye!!! :D So, the package is available on Telenor 3G at Rs.75 which offers 3GB data, 150 free balance. For the whole month, it becomes 75*4=300 Plus Rs.100 Tax=Rs.400, 3×4=12GB data (I know it made a type above), 150×4=Rs.600 free balance which you can use for all the networks for calling. The package code is *345*75#. Aap A Jayain, Baryani Intizar Kar Rhi Hai :P

                • Muhammad Aamir, I ll opt for above package, I would like to use on my laptop, therefore what the best option for instance is it possible & feasible to get Third party USB Dongle and install telenor sim and plug into laptop usb and use internet? If that possible please suggest best third party usb dongle.

                  Thanks!

                  • Yes! I’m using a 3G Dongle that I bought at Rs2700 in which you can use all the networks’ SIM. I’m selling it if you’re interested at Rs.2500, I want to buy a 4G Dongle!

                    • sir i asked u already have u tried warid 200 Rupees default offer which u decribed?
                      as i consult warid customer are they said there is no such offer

                    • Hey, Aamir! I’m looking for a 4G Wingle/MiFi device on which I could use Zong 4G, Warid 4G and Telenor 3G. Thus, 4G/LTE/3G/2G fallback option must be available in the device. Have you used any such device which you would suggest/recommend me? Thank you for your time.

                    • Isn’t there any unlocked device in the market? I don’t understand the unlocking procedure. :(

                      Also, if I have to unlock the device then wouldn’t Zong 4G MiFi be a better choice because it’s cheaper?

                    • If you live in Lahore, the device can be unlocked at Rs.1000 at Hafeez Center. Sorry, I don’t know which would be the best :)

        • EXACTLY, the unlimited option…. i need unlimited data as i surf a LOT every month, download quite many games, videos etc. And also use skype a lot…

        • 3g not covered whole areas of each cities. they covered only city face areas , related integrated areas of same cities are without 3g coverage, as example Mobilink launched 3g in Lalamusa last month but it is covering only main areas of city, even beginning areas are without 3g signals

  • Telenor effected too? I was getting over 10mbps from telenor for months, but now, it’s just ~1mbps from 1st Ramazan :( Any idea?

  • Outage has nothing to do with PTCL network.. Its internal submarine cable outage on SWM4 and IMEWE network. which are maintained by international Consortium’s. Fresh IMEWE Outage : 110 Gbps
    Ongoing SMW4 outage : 178 Gbps
    Total Unavailable Bandwidth : 288 Gbps

    Out of total bandwidth 360 G we have only 72 G
    is available

    • As international bandwidth costs huge amount of money so no operator can be expected to come up with unlimited bandwidth.

      You only get international bandwidth from 3 submarine cable SMW3,SMW4 and
      IMEWE,. When 2/3 cable are cut under sea its not PTCL scope to resolve.
      International Consortium responsible will send repair ships.

      Peak Load observed on all international routes is 280 – 290 Gpbs
      which implies sufficient reserve in case of minor outages on any single
      cable

      FOR SMW4 outage Alcatel submarine betworks ASN has declared cable fault inside sea at 18 Km from Karachi. International Permit being issued for repair

      FOR IMEWE double failure in Seg-2 (Egypt). Further investigation is in progress by relevant consortium/Cable station

      • Brother! What about the Mobilink deployment of 100Gbps? They can provide high speed perhaps with an unlimited package!!

  • Dear , we are facing the same problem in PTCL office as you guys. It is not the fault of PTCL. PTCL Engineers are trying their best to resolve the issue. Hope soon will be resolved.

    • i know right … BUT why do these cables develop faults so regularly ?
      any idea who controls the upkeep of these ?

      Maybe PTCL should take up the issue with them …

      • These are the undersea cables which circle around whole world. If cut or damaged from any where it causes issues for all the countries relying on them. For cable so long periodic issues must not be a big thing. What PTCL must look for is alternatives, like satellite connections etc. Plus gov must allow private investors to build their own communication mediam to connect internet other than relying on PTCL,

        I have used all the ptcl products right from dialup, vfone, dsl, evo, evo nitro they are just good at introducing products but very very bad at providing value/after sales service or customer service. Currently I am using LinkDotNet dsl which as well gets slow periodically due to faults in PTCL’s pathetic (beyond imagination) land line network.

  • IMEWE Outage : 110 Gbps

    Ongoing SMW4 outage : 178 Gbps

    Total Unavailable Bandwidth : 288 Gbps

    Out of total bandwidth 360 G we have only 72 G is available

  • “while unnecessary high-rate data consumption is also not recommended.”
    acha ab me roz 200 200 GB Download karunga :/
    Girti hui Dewaro ko ek Dhakka or Do

  • TW1 (Transworld) services are up & stable. 3g operators who is taking tier1 bandwidth from PTCL is affected however 3G operators who is taking bandwidth from TW1 (Transworld) have no issue in connectivity.

  • These idiots cant even put IMEWE some distance away from SMW4. How can second failure happens unless they are total stupid.

  • When they are going to use cables which link to India? And when they are going to complete cable to China?

  • Internet speed on ptcl is still unbearably slow… i’m gonna use warid lte tonight (ramadan budle) fingers crossed to see if the speeds are good….

  • apna internet name batye plz sary mey internet connection engneeer hun thanks
    modem name konsa use kary hai internet


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