Dito says telco network is ready as 1st audit begins
MANILA, Philippines — Telecommunications startup Dito Telecommunity said on Thursday it expects to pass the mandated audit of its network that begins this week.
This will be the first official test of Dito’s capabilities after the company sought a six month extension from the original July 2020 deadline after its rollout was delayed by the COVID-19 lockdown.
Dito said on Thursday it notified the National Telecommunications Commission it was ready for the technical audit on Jan. 7.
The test will determine if Dito meets its first-year commitment to cover 37 percent of the country’s population and provide a minimum average internet speed of 27 megabits per second.
Dito said the test will be completed within 30 days. Another 15 days will be needed to prepare the final report, it added.
The test will be conducted by independent auditor R.G. Manabat & Co. in “various areas.” A percentage of 1,600 cell sites covering 8,800 barangays will be tested, the company explained.
“For the past months, amid the difficulties posed by the current global pandemic, Dito has made great strides in the rollout to ensure that the results of the audit will be positive,” Dito chief administrative officer Adel Tamano said in a statement on Thursday.
He said Dito also intends to push through with its commercial launch in March 2021.
Dito is now on its second year since its license was awarded by the Philippine government. This means its next technical audit will happen on July this year.
The requirement then is to cover 51 percent of the country’s population and offer a minimum average internet speed of 55 Mbps.
Dito earlier committed to cover 84 percent of the Philippine population and offer a minimum average internet speed of 55 Mbps by the end of its fifth year or by 2024.
The company, which holds a congressional franchise via Mindanao Islamic Telephone Co., was selected as the country’s newest telecommunications player in 2018 as the Duterte administration sought a challenger to incumbents PLDT Inc. and Globe Telecom.
Dito is a venture between Davao-based businessman Dennis A. Uy and state-run China Telecom.
The technical audit was among the conditions of its license.
Should the company repeatedly breach of its commitments, the government will recall its radio frequencies and seize its P25.7 billion bond.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.