MANILA – Leading telecoms and digital services provider PLDT is further boosting investments in its fixed and wireless networks to provide consumers with the best data experience that supports their increasingly digital lifestyle.
“Our vision is to make high-speed internet connectivity the standard of every Filipino whether they are at home or on the go. With reliable and fast connectivity, PLDT is fully committed to revolutionize the way Filipinos experience and enjoy world-class digital services and content on their various screens – the television, personal computers, tablets, and mobile phones,” said PLDT and Smart EVP and Chief Revenue Officer Eric R. Alberto.
PLDT Home is spending P11 billion in the next two years to provide its subscribers with Fibr-fast internet with the roll-out of over one million ports nationwide that will upgrade over 1.3 million subscribers.
“We are leveling up their broadband experience with the migration of our DSL customers to Fibr-fast connectivity. This will fortify the foundation of the SmartHome for the digitally savvy Filipino family,” said PLDT FVP and Head of Home Business Marco Borlongan.
“With our network modernization program, we are bringing the power of Fibr to every Filipino home so that our subscribers can better enjoy their digital lifestyle through access to world-class Internet. This year, we’ve been rolling out fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network nationwide and we’ve also teamed up with world-renowned content platforms and providers to ensure that our subscribers get the best possible home entertainment experience,” he stressed.
PLDT is expected to expand its FTTH coverage to about four million homes passed by the end of 2017. It is also deploying hybrid fiber technologies to allow existing customers to enjoy fiber-like speeds.
LTE rollout in Metro Cebu, Davao
Meanwhile, PLDT wireless unit Smart Communications has already finished its LTE rollout in the country’s top urban hubs Metro Cebu and Metro Davao, in the island resort of Boracay, and in Rizal province. It is currently underway in Metro Manila.
“By end-2018, over 90% of the country’s population will have Smart LTE coverage,” PLDT and Smart FVP and Head of Consumer Business for Market Development Oscar A. Reyes, Jr. said. “We are complementing this LTE rollout with our deployment of ultra-fast Smart Wifi, which registers over 100Mbps download and upload speed, and is now available at key airports, other transport hubs, popular food parks, bars and restaurants as part of our SMART Spots Program all over the country.”
Among the airports with super speed Smart Wifi are the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Davao City’s Francisco Bangoy International Airport, Laguindingan Airport in Misamis Oriental, Bacolod-Silay International Airport and Iloilo International Airport, Roxas Airport, Zamboanga Airport, Clark International Airport, Dumaguete-Sibulan Airport, Laoag International Airport, General Santos International Airport, Kalibo International Airport and Puerto Princesa Airport.
Smart Wifi is also present in the sea ports of Batangas City and Calapan in Mindoro, major bus terminals and thoroughfares, as well as other public areas across the country, including popular entertainment venues and food parks which are turned into Smart Spots.
“This comprehensive network modernization and expansion program is at the core of the PLDT group’s digital pivot,” Reyes pointed out.
Smart’s network rollout took a big bulk of PLDT’s ramped-up capital expenditure program of P42.8 billion for 2016, which included the utilization of the new frequencies freed up with the acquisition of San Miguel Corporation’s telco assets.
Earlier this month, Smart announced it was upgrading its cell sites and doubling its LTE capacity in Marikina and Quezon City as part of its network expansion and modernization program. The upgrade is expected to improve Smart’s mobile data service, particularly LTE and 3G, and provide superior network capacity to customers who live and work in the two cities. Through LTE device and SIM swap programs, Smart is assisting its customers to shift to LTE devices and upgrade to LTE SIMs so that they can fully enjoy the improved network.
The latest regional results collated by wireless coverage research firm OpenSignal also showed that Smart continues to lead in terms of LTE speeds across all regions in the country where it has LTE.
PLDT has invested around P300 billion or nearly US$6 billion over the last decade to roll out the country’s most extensive fixed and wireless network infrastructure which now has 150,000 kilometers of fiber optic cables designed to support the Filipinos’ growing use of fixed and mobile data.