Vietnam has problems with the AAG cable – again

Vietnam has problems with the AAG cable – again

Users of fixed and mobile networks in Vietnam are facing connectivity issues once again after the latest round of problems affecting the Asia America Gateway (AAG) cable.

In fact, according to local press reports, Vietnam's internet connection via the AAG undersea cable broke down in July only days after being fixed.

It appears that on 22 June, the AAG encountered a problem on its S1H branch, which took until 2 July to be fixed.

Yet during repairs, new errors were discovered and therefore the process lasted longer than expected; it was still not completed by 17 July.

The S1H branch of the AAG undersea optical fibre cable lies around 107 kilometres off the beach town of Vung Tau in southern Vietnam.

The result seems to have been that about 15 percent of the total connection capacity from Vietnam to international destinations, especially Singapore and Hong Kong, has been affected – and in particular services with large volumes of traffic like Facebook and Gmail .

The issue affects users of 3G and 4G networks along with international social network users. In fact, according to the Vietnam Internet Association, many domestic providers still rely on the AAG cable for their international internet connection traffic. 

Vietnam has six submarine cable systems and a 120 gigabit channel that runs overland through China. However, the $560-million AAG, connected in November 2009, handles more than 60 percent of Vietnam’s international internet traffic.

The cable runs more than 20,000 kilometres, connecting Southeast Asia with the US, passing through Brunei, Hong Kong, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

But, as we have reported previously, it has required repairs on a number of occasions. For example, in April 2020 there was a technical issue affecting the cable’s S1 branch connecting Vietnam and Hong Kong, which slowed down traffic. It was not possible to restore full service until late April.

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