ThimphuTech was the first technology blog in Bhutan. We started writing it in 2009, just as broadband and mobile internet started to take off. (Although internet in Bhutan was launched in 1999, it was either super-slow or super-expensive, and was only used by a selected few).

In the blog, we wrote about technology and food, but also about plenty of other stuff. The blog became popular and influential in Bhutan. A companion bi-weekly column -- Ask Boaz -- was published for many years in the Kuensel, Bhutan's national newspaper. (The complete Kuensel columns are available as an ebook, Blogging with Dragons).

We stopped updating the blog when we left Bhutan in 2014, but the information within the posts can still prove useful, and thus we decided to keep it online.

We thank all our readers.
Tashi Delek,
Boaz & Galit.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Finally, Bhutan Telecom updates mobile broadband plans

Bhutan Telecom announced four changes to the post-paid mobile broadband plans. Here is a summary of the changes:

  • BT is simplifying the schemes. The "Supreme" and "Easy" plans (Nu 399 and Nu 799 per month, respectively) will no longer be available. We suggested removing these plans in a blog post in November 2010.
  • The price of the cheapest package is reduced from Nu 149 to Nu 99, while the data quota is increased from 300MB to 333MB, with each additional MB costing around Nu 0.3.
  • The Nu 999 plan, which used to be unlimited, will be capped at 5555MB. Additional MB will cost around Nu 0.2.
  • A new pay-per-use plan will charge Nu 3.1 per MB. 

 Here is a table summarizing the new plans:

PackageRateQuotaOver Limit
Usage Charge
99Nu. 99
333 MB
Nu. 0.3/MB
999Nu. 999
5555 MB
Nu. 0.2/MB
Pay-per-useNu. 0
0 MB
Nu. 3.1/MB

In addition to having lucky numbers all around (99, 999, 333, 5555), the most important change is fixing a major loophole: the "Unlimited" Nu 999 plan. That plan allowed data card users to download humongous amounts of data for a fixed price, and is partly responsible for the poor performance experienced by users. With all other plans costing around Nu 200 per GB (including home broadband), the Nu 999 plan was a lucrative option for users downloading movies and other big files from the Internet. This is now gone.

The new plans will be available starting August 2012.