PNCC Updates on Internet and 4G Projects
PNCC would like to update the public regarding Internet and cellular projects currently underway. Over $6 million has been allocated to several infrastructure improvement projects in 2017 to prepare PNCC services for international fiber connectivity. [restrict]
These projects include a power support overhaul, restructuring and ten-fold expansion of the domestic telecom network, conversion of the local telephone switching equipment to state of the art, all-digital technology, and an upgrade of the PalauCel system to 4G for faster mobile data.
Due to the complex technical nature of these projects, there may be occasional service interruptions or impairments. Every effort is being undertaken to prevent service issues, and PNCC will continue to advise the public about planned temporary outages necessary to perform the upgrade work.
Two planned temporary outages for PalauCel mobile services were announced in advance last week. The outages are necessary to enable testing of the new 4G system. The first planned outage was held on Tuesday, July 11 from 4:30 a.m. to 6:30 a.m., and the second was scheduled for Thursday July 13 at the same early time.
After a planned cellular outage ends, some customers may need to turn their cellphones off and on again to restore service.
Additional planned outages for the 4G upgrade project may be required at a later date, and will be announced to the public.
Recently, PNCC’s Internet services were impaired by a temporary outage on one of its satellite antennas that required escalation to O3b, the international service provider. PNCC technicians were able to re-calibrate the antennas and restore service but heavy rains have also affected service reliability.
PNCC’s current international link via O3b uses a technology that is subject to a condition called “rain fade” that weakens the Internet signal and impairs service during bad weather.
“We are really looking forward to migrating our Internet services to Palau’s new international fiber optic cable link this year,” stated Leo Ben Teriong, Acting General Manager. “Fiber optic technology is not subject to interruption by weather conditions like the O3b satellite service, and will enable PNCC to provide much faster and much more reliable Internet connectivity to our customers.” [/restrict]