Brief History of Internet in Thailand
Thailand started gaining exposure to information technology during the early 19 century. Due to the continued efforts of various visionaries and university professors, a completely functional and technologically advanced Internet facility is available in Thailand. Currently, Thailand has sixteen ISPs operating in the country with a total bandwidth of 30 mbps. The leading service providers are Internet Thailand Company, KSC Comnet and Loxinfo Company.
Dr. Kanchana Kanchanasut and Dr. Tomonori Kimura are considered as the Thailand’s Internet Pioneers. These two were working as professors at Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) in Thailand. In order to maintain contact with their friends in Australia and Tokyo, these professors received some technical assistance from Australia and managed to create a small network. They were able to send emails using the UUCP connection and Thaipak X.25 service available with Communication Authority of Thailand (CAT). With the aid of Australian International National Development Plan, the first email network called TCSNet was established in Thailand in 1988. This network included AIT, Prince Songkhla University and Chulalongkorn University. Later in 1991, with the assistance of Australian Academic Research Network, Thammasat University was connected with University of Melbourne using the software called MHSNet.
In 1992, under the supervision of Professor Pairash Thajchayapong, both the MHSNet and UUCP systems were integrated into a full TCP/IP called as Thai social/scientific Academic and Research Network or Thaisarn. Boosted by strong economic growth and association with private sector, Thaisarn rapidly increased its network. The government as well as several other international funding agencies heavily funded Thaisarn.
During the early years of Internet, the technology was very expensive. There was very little infrastructure and technical knowledge was scarce. But, today the situation is entirely different. Internet has become an indispensable tool for sharing information.