By Tom Noda
Dominant carrier PLDT is dipping its hands in an area where a slew of technology companies have so far failed to conquer in the past: transforming the ordinary TV into an Internet-enabled device.
It can be recalled that PLDT?s own subsidiary, Smart Communications, launched in 2010 a similar service called SmartBro SurfTV. It met little success primarily because, as experts have asserted, a TV set is primarily public in nature and cannot be used for a private activity like Web surfing.
For PLDT, however, the time is ripe for its new service called ?TVolution?, which allows a TV to access the Internet through a tiny box powered by quad-core processors capable of accessing the Internet and networking with other devices.
It operates on an Android-based platform and can therefore connect to any HDMI-ready TV and syncs with a PLDT Home Fibr WiFi connection.
TVolution also comes pre-loaded with applications such as Clickplay, My Pinoy TV, News5, KnAppsack, Browser, and even Kingsoft Open Office that allows creation and editing of documents for office and personal use.
The new service, according to PLDT vice president and head of Home business Gary Dujali, is expected to boost the company?s fixed-line services.
Reports showed fixed-line services in some countries are declining due to the enormous growth of cellular use.
Dujali said that although PLDT is working on doubling its broadband market share, it continues to extend its base of fixed-line subscribers, which is now pegged at 1.3 million or almost 50 percent of the fixed-line subscriber base in the Philippines.
Dujali said subscribers of both PLDT Home’s Fibr and DSL who are at Plan 999 or higher only need to add P199 to avail of TVolution. Records show there are now over 1,000 PLDT Fibr-powered villages in the Philippines.
Dujali said TVolution is PLDT Home’s response to the global trend of video on demand (VOD) that netizens want to have. Based on latest trends, the largest growing audience is online.
“TVolution is entertainment on demand. The days of aimless channel-surfing, looking for something good to watch, are over. Now, all of the video content of the Internet is made available to TVolution subscribers,” Dujali said.