Categorized | National News

BTC Fires Back At Carifta Criticisms

Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) officials said criticism of their service provided during the recently held 2013 Carifta games are uncalled for and unjust as the company was never drafted to offer internet accommodations.

BTC was a major sponsor of the event but was being raked over the coals over the weekend for what some international media houses called poor internet coverage for the media during the BTC Carifta games.

BTC Senior Vice President of Communications and Marketing Marlon Johnson said in a release that these claims are unfounded.

“BTC wishes to make it clear that the company did not and is not providing commercial internet services for any Wi-Fi or other media related internet services at the stadium,” he said. “We were never asked to do so.

“Neither the games nor the stadium management requested the services that are now being called into question.”

However, Mr. Johnson said the company provided free Wi-Fi services for the first 1,500 customers who accessed the service.

The BTC representative added that what ought to have happened was for the planning committee to have purchased the company’s commercial service for Wi-Fi internet that is secure and password protected so as to enable the media to have dedicated access to internet.

A number of stories hit the web during the games blasting the telecommunications company for providing shoddy service, in turn hindering reporters from being able to file and post stories.

Mr. Johnson said this is the first such major event at the stadium and clearly there will be much learning that will come from this.

One of these lessons he said is the need to have a comprehensive internet and Wi-Fi strategy for all the various groupings that will descend on the stadium for these events.

Mr. Johnson added that the company will be happy to partner with the stadium’s managers on finding commercial solutions that will work for them, for customers and for BTC.

He also explained why many cell phone users encountered massive network issues at the stadium.

“The unfortunate reality is that when you have 10,000 persons in a single small area, you will have some congestion,” he added.

“Persons who travelled to the Olympics – or even those who visit the arenas in Florida for sporting events – will tell you that once the stadium starts to get full, the availability of mobile internet becomes less and less.

“We have added a new cell tower just outside the stadium which has helped. But short of a full ‘in-stadium’ solution that would have to be funded at least in part by the Stadium Authority, it will be exceedingly difficult to provide full mobile hi-speed coverage for every user who wants it.”

Written by Jones Bahamas

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