EC Internet For 2017: Updates

I changed my Internet provider about a month ago.  I got CNT in El Centro in Quito.  One month seems to me enough time to evaluate the service and compare with my old provider, Movistar.

I’m thrilled with CNT’s service.

Movistar got me to sign a two-year contract in 2014 that reverted to a month-to-month obligation earlier this year.. or I would have switched earlier.  The buffering is so bad that streaming video was virtually impossible on every website that offered it via Movistar wi-fi.

Speed was g-dawful slow on Movistar.  I don’t analyze “megas” unless I have to.  But it’s like art.  You usually know it’s good or bad when you see it.  Movistar was bad.  Even when I took my MacBook Pro to their repair place in north Quito, you couldn’t get good streaming video -- and that’s at their repair center!

CNT Internet is a dream.  I can see Netflix movies, USTVNow North American TV shows on dozens of channels, sports via pay websites and all kinds of other moving images, typically without buffering or video loss.

cccmedia in Centro Historic, Quito

To get CNT Internet, I walked about four blocks down Benalcazar street in Centro Histórico to a CNT center and ordered it.  Having the national ID card or cédula is required.

I had no home-based phone line, just my cell phone, so I ordered the phone line that is required for CNT Internet .. plus ordering the Internet service itself.

The CNT center in my neighborhood does not assign an installation time, so I had to make sure my cell phone was at the ready to receive a call from the installer at his convenience.

Actually, it took two visits by installers on separate days -- one for the phone line, the other to install the new Internet box into the phone plug.

It all got done in about a week .. and involved me making a second trip to the CNT office when I wasn’t contacted in the first three days.

A tip .. find out a CNT Internet code or contraseña, which may be required by your computer to connect or re-connect to CNT web service.

I have had one service problem -- a semi-outage for one day this week, coincidentally starting with the hour that the U.S. presidential election result was called.  My ability to navigate the Internet was severely comprised for about 24 hours.

However, it’s back to normal now with no need for a CNT service-repair visit .. and the service is again working great. :)

cccmedia in Quito

Since you had to have a landline installed, I assume the technology type is DSL.  I also assume that despite reports that CNT is installing fiber optic throughout Quito, it is still not available in your sector (historical district). Otherwise you would have subscribed to it.

I am a little surprised that USTVnow performs so well for you since, most people who have DSL through Etapa here in Cuenca seems to also complain about buffering.  However, I am not entirely sure what service level they subscribe to.

If you don't know what your bandwidth is, I can probably deduce based on what you are paying per month?

Although I don’t recall seeing a bill yet, my understanding is that I’ll be paying $24 a month for CNT Internet service. 

That’s less than half of my monthly charge from the previous provider, Movistar, for much better service.

I was not offered a choice between DSL and fiber optic.

Before the installation, I asked my longtime condo conserje what Internet provider was most popular in the complex.  I did not mention any particular provider.

He said CNT is the popular one.

cccmedia in Quito

Well, apparently you should be getting 10 Mbps download for your 24 dollars which is pretty good considering that same $24 gets me 3.6 Mbps download with ETAPA in Cuenca using DSL technology.

I may have to pay a visit to CNT next week to see if they offer DSL where I live. I sort of doubt it........

Is fast internet worth it as in 20+mps? It is if you have the technology that warrants that speed. There are other metrics as well such as viewing distance to take advantage of 4K viewing which is essentially 4 times clearer than FHD. But ultimately that's where it's headed 4K in the same way HD went to FHD. It's good that Ecuador is keeping on par in terms of internet speed and viewing devices that can take advantage of that speed. I am certain it's not true everywhere but at least a foundation exists and I've personally experienced prices lessen for fiber optic internet to a third of cost in less than a year. I am confident this trend will continue.

Lastly internet on cellular is improving and becoming cheaper too but pricey if you want to do more than just surf basic websites.

It's basically $1 for 100 mb on prepaid plans and a bit less on post paid.


We are looking at moving to Loja in spring of 2017.  We work online in the IT field and so Internet connectivity and speed is a serious concern.  Does anyone know if fiber optic Internet is available in Loja? We need a minimum of 25mbps for up/download speeds - is that possible?

Thanks in advance for any help or suggestions!

Shrubgirl :


We are looking at moving to Loja in spring of 2017.  We work online in the IT field and so Internet connectivity and speed is a serious concern.  Does anyone know if fiber optic Internet is available in Loja? We need a minimum of 25mbps for up/download speeds - is that possible?

Thanks in advance for any help or suggestions!

I doubt it, but I would ask this blogger. … mment-form


Regardless of whether a particular municipality has fiber-optic or other advanced Internet hookup available, you have to verify that the connection is available is your neighborhood of choice and your domicilio.

I could not get fiber-optic in Centro Histórico, Quito .. but eventually got out of my non-streaming Movistar account and signed up with CNT for a fast (though not fiber optic) connection, as I shared earlier on this thread.

cccmedia in Centro Histórico

Thanks cccmedia!

I’d like to share how fiber optic internet in Ecuador is progressing, as I have a little insight as I’m probably responsible for laying out about 2km of fiber optic cable in the capital. The infrastructure basically consists of a cable connection from your provider to a central cabinet in certain areas and from there fiber optic cable it is connected to customer’s homes.

Some homes will be close to the neighborhood’s cabinet, and other’s further away. Some will be miles away and not possible to connect unless you negotiate a contract which can cost you thousands, and this is true provided the logistics allowing running the fiber optic cable to the residence. This is the case because providers only allocate a certain number of free meters, usually around 300-400 meters. The good news, as far as I know, is that distance does not hinder internet quality for fiber optic.

So, if your home is near a centralized fiber optic area, great, and if not then how much are you willing to pay for extra cable length. It’s all negotiable, and if for example you have X amount of people to sign up, the provider may run their own cable there and install a cabinet to the neighborhood.

la gringa de Loja responded to Shrub girl.

It's possible that in the future Loja will have those kinds of internet speeds. Supposedly they are currently installing fiber optic cable in the more urban parts of the city, but these projects can take years, and, well, I'll believe it when I see it. For now the places in Ecuador with (relatively) fast internet are in and around Quito, possibly in Guayaquil and parts of the coast. Oh, and it seems internet options in Cuenca have also improved considerably in recent years. Best of luck to you!

Thanks vsimple!

Thank you for the info!

Some good posts here.

As others have pointed out, you need to be "lucky" enough to be in an area where Fibre Optic is close-by enough to make it viable to have it connected up. Of course, this is true everywhere (not just in Ec.)

We got "lucky" earlier this year, when our tenants told us that one of the local providers was running fibre right out the front of our little gated community, and he asked me if I wanted them to have it connected to the house while the techs were in the area. Naturally, I said yes. We (again) got lucky, because the community we are in had conduit installed for fibre when the place was built, so that made installation easier than it otherwise would have been.

(I'm using the Australian English spelling of "fibre", in case anyone's wondering...)

Just a heads up for anyone interested. Netlife is offering 20mbps for $152 + impuestos for 1 year, so that's about $173, which comes out to $14.44 per month.

Instalación is free when paid with cash or credit card. This is a 1 payment deal.

I am not sure if it's applicable nationwide, but it's true for centro quito.

vsimple :

I am not sure if it's applicable nationwide, but it's true for centro quito.

And by centro Quito, do you mean Centro Histórico, or Gringo Central (north Quito/Mariscal)?


Hey ccc, my mistake I should have clarified as I meant Centro-North Quito. I don't think Centro Histórico applies yet given the restrictions you stated before about fiber optic installation.

Here's an update with regards to fiber optic, distance does make a difference. The issue is not any individual provider but the length of the cable itself. The longer the distance the greater the probability of interference by external factors. To understand what I'm saying just examine the cables hanging and dangling from light pole to light pole. The longer the distance the greater the probability someone or something interfering with your cable. Could be workers for another company installing new cables, could be any number of factors.

The point is distance matters. 500 meters and less is good, 400 is actually better.

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