PLDT, Smart in the final stages of network transformation program
With Globe just inking their $700M network upgrade project contract with partners for their a few days ago, Smart is already on the final stretch of their own fast-tracked, nationwide PhP 67.1-billion network transformation program.
Once complete, the program is expected to benefit close to 50 million Smart subscribers all over the country, by further enhancing the reliability and quality of its wireless services, including SMS, call, and data services, and Internet access to even the most remote barrios and barangays.
The biggest winner here would be Huawei, a leading global provider of commercial telecom networks, and like Globe is also PLDT and Smart’s partner in their network upgrade initiative.
To date, PLDT and Smart have modernized and optimized the network covering the entire Visayas and Mindanao areas, and Bicol in Luzon, with the rest of the country to follow soon. Aside from Huawei, PLDT and Smart are also working with Ericsson and Nokia Siemens Network on the program.
“While the rest of the industry is just about to lay the groundwork, we’ve already passed the halfway mark of this landmark network undertaking,” said Orlando B. Vea, co-founder and Chief Wireless Advisor of Smart.
Originally scheduled to run for three years after its launch in early 2011, the program is scheduled for completion by the middle of this year – taking only a total of a year and a half.
“Most importantly, our subscribers have already been enjoying the fruits of this endeavor, including superior voice connection and quality, quicker SMS delivery, enhanced data connection speeds, nationwide coverage, and zero downtime, especially in times of disasters,” added Vea.
Once fully completed, PLDT and Smart also expect the transformation program to allow it to reach “blackout areas”, or places that used to have no broadband Internet access — enabling Internet penetration to even the most remote areas of the country.
To date, PLDT and Smart have over 45,000 kilometers of looped fiber optic cabling, fully covering mainland Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
“We have clearly built the most advanced and superior network in the country. To us, all this translates to the best communication experience and mobile lifestyle for our subscribers,” said Vea.