Local telecom giant Dhiraagu has reversed changes made to its fixed broadband packages that dropped speed after a “fair usage allowance.”
With effect on July 1, some customers found that their internet speed would drop to 256kbps after a fixed allowance that ranges between 30gb to 500gb a month.
The “throttled” speed was previously 1mbps.
The move prompted a barrage of complaints with many customers saying it amounted to a degradation of a paid-for service without consent.
“We’ve heard you and we’ve brought changes to our Fixed Broadband packages,” the company tweeted Friday.
The changes drew “both positive feedback and some concerns from our customers,” Dhiraagu said in a press release.
“Although the increased data allowances, bigger value data boosters and the introduction of sms notifications were generally noted, some customers have raised their concerns regarding the revision of the speeds after Fair Usage Allowance (FUA). We thank our customers for their valuable feedback and in consideration to this, we have decided not to apply the 256kbps speed after FUA in any of the packages.”
However, it announced changes due to take effect on August 1, whereby the throttled speed would be 512mbps for packages below MVR790 (US$51) a month.
The Maldives passed a consumer protection law in 1996 but it does not explicitly prohibit changes to prepaid services.
Earlier this year, Dhiraagu faced boycott calls after an opposition activist claimed his SIM was cloned.
It later emerged that Dhiraagu allowed police to access Thayyib Shaheem’s cellphone number for a criminal investigation
The Maldivian government owns 41.8 percent of Dhiraagu shares. Bahrain Telecommunication is the majority shareholder with a 52 percent stake, while the remaining shares are held by the public.
Dear @Dhiraagu team. My regards to whoever thought throttling Internet speed to 256 kbps was a good idea and to the people at the management who approved it. And the marketing team who thought this would mean more people would buy the expensive packages.
— ûšęfül.ïdîōt🎈 (@useful0idiot) July 5, 2018
I signed up for fibre broadband bcox @Dhiraagu throttled speed was promised to be at 1Mbps disregard to any package! Now you’ve reduced it down to 256kbps! You just can’t change a service without informing. This isn't the package I signup for. 😡
— Ali Shinaz (@alishinaz) July 4, 2018
@Dhiraagu stop sending “great news” messages to your customers saying you have increased the data allowances.. This is what you actually did.. and here’s how it looks compared to other service providers! 🤦♀️ pic.twitter.com/sKgn72B9Z4
— Diya (@iDiyaDylan) July 1, 2018
This is not an improvement on your packages. People changed to Fiber for better speed after FUA is up. Not for bigger packages.
This is so degrading for customers. Please reverse this decision to bottleneck our speeds.
Thank you! pic.twitter.com/rfxXvCw9FA
— عبدالله (@VDarknezz) July 3, 2018
I once complained because @dhiraagu 100 Mbps and 5 Mbps connections were getting the same post-FUA throttled speeds of 1 Mbps. Their solution? No, not raise the speed of the pricier tiers but make it insufferably slow for lower ones. 256 Kbps in 2018? Are you insane?!?
— Marumoalu (@dhebandhihaara) July 1, 2018
— އަޙްމަދު 🎈 (@fulhangii) July 4, 2018