The last instant messaging service in Turkmenistan just stopped working due to a slowdown in data transfer speed. The country has the slowest internet in the world and is therefore practically cut off from the rest of the world. You can forget about using social media and even browsing ordinary websites.
So far, the IMO communicator has been operating in Turkmenistan. It was the only working messenger that could still be used despite the slow connection. According to Radio Swoboda, the government in Ashakhabad has again slowed down the Internet, thus cutting off citizens from the last working communication tool.
The slowest internet in the world
According to a report by the British company Cable, which monitors the performance of broadband internet around the world, the average connection speed in Turkmenistan in 2021 was about half a megabit per second. This is the worst result among all 224 countries that were surveyed by the company.
At this speed, it takes 22 hours to download a 5 gigabyte file. Now it’s even worse, after another slowdown, not only messengers, but also regular websites stopped working.
“IMO it no longer works and everything else has been locked down for a long time. Even foreign TV channels are disappearing from the internet. We haven’t been able to watch Euronews for about a week,” an Ashgabat resident told Radio Swoboda on condition of anonymity.
A country cut off from the world
Authorities in Turkmenistan have blocked their citizens from using social media. Until recently, residents circumvented this block by using a VPN, but after lowering the speed, it became impossible.
What’s more, the internet in Turkmenistan, apart from being the slowest, is also one of the most expensive in the world. The only way to contact people living outside the country is by e-mail, which can still be received using smartphones. Telephone calls are monitored by the authorities.