Telco reports improvement in mobile internet speed
PLDT Inc.’s flagship mobile unit, Smart Communications, said mobile internet speed improved toward the end of last year as it rolled out more LTE sites made possible with newly- secured radio frequencies.
The telco said this a statement citing the Asia Network Quality Report of J.P. Morgan Securities covering the fourth quarter of 2016. The statement did not include the original report, and details only covered mobile speed, not coverage and reliability.
Smart said data from the report showed that LTE download speeds in the country hit 8.24 megabits per second in the last quarter of 2016, up from the 7.27 Mbps national LTE average posted in the previous quarter.
This was compared to Indonesia’s LTE average speed of 6.66 Mbps for the same period.
The JP Morgan report was based on crowd-sourced data gathered by wireless coverage research firm OpenSignal.
Smart added that it posted the highest overall LTE download speeds at 9.17 Mbps. Smart has also taken the lead in the national capital region for 3G, with download speeds of 2.85 Mbps, the report shows. LTE download speeds across areas ranged from 7.39 Mbps in the Visayas to 9.99 Mbps in Metro Manila.
“These improvements have been driven by the stepped up investments of operators to upgrade their data networks,” Smart said in the statement.
The focus on LTE comes as PLDT and rival Globe Telecom last year acquired the telco unit of San Miguel Corp. That unit held valuable 3G and 4G (LTE) frequencies, including those in the coveted 700 megahertz band. Both PLDT and Globe started to roll-out new LTE sites last year.
Smart is now undertaking a nationwide, three-year network expansion and overhaul program to improve both coverage and quality of service, particularly its LTE service.
“This roll-out is elevating the bar for mobile internet services in the country. It serves as a more powerful platform for advanced and relevant digital services that will help transform the country into a more competitive, digitally-empowered nation,” Ray C. Espinosa, chief corporate services officer of PLDT and Smart, said in the statement.