KUALA LUMPUR: After not being able to enjoy smooth internet access for years, the installation of the Starlink device in Kampung Orang Asli Hulu Kemensah last month not only connects the community with their loved ones, it also provides them with tools to generate income and facilitates better access to education.
Bernama's check at the village, which is located in Hulu Kelang, found that the villagers were having difficulty getting a cellular signal for years, thus making it difficult for them to connect with the outside world.
However, the installation of Starlink has given a new lease of life to the village, which is inhabited by 135 residents from 35 families.
One of the villagers, Melati Kassim, 27, said Starlink has enabled her to connect with her family in Pahang which was previously difficult due to poor cellular signal.
“In the past, I used mobile phones for calls and messages only. In the past, it was difficult even at times when I had to ask my boss for time off due to fever or illness.
“However, now is much better with internet access in my village, I can now use WhatsApp at home. It is much easier and faster to communicate with others,” she added.
Another villager, Johan Kassim, 32, said that the device made things easier for him who ventured into online business by selling forest products based on the requests received.
“Before this, I had to spend RM3 a day to get internet for my own use and work matters, but now (Starlink) makes it easier for me to take orders for things I need to find in the forest.
“Now we don't have to go far, as we can use the internet at home, we can browse Facebook, YouTube and so on,” he said.
Meanwhile, Norizan Amat, 29, said that based on her experience when the Movement Control Order (MCO) was enforced, her two children faced difficulties in getting internet access for online learning.
Thus, Starlink installation provides facilities to her children, aged eight and 10, so that they do not fall behind if the teachers use the online platform to carry out the teaching and learning process.
“During the MCO where the school lessons were held online, my children could not access the internet to study when they were at home and had to bring their books down to the junction to get internet access.
“Even though during MCO there were teachers who helped by giving me a mobile phone, it didn't do much good as this village didn't have internet access. Now that we have Starlink, my children don't have to worry and they can study and do homework at home.
Last month, Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil, in a Facebook post, said that the village was the first Orang Asli settlement selected for Starlink device installation, thus making it the second location after Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) Kuala Pilah branch in Negeri Sembilan.
Villagers in Kampung Orang Asli Hulu Kemensah can now enjoy internet data speeds of over 200 Mbps with a quota of up to 1TB per month. -Bernama