Telco giant PLDT has revealed that its “Home” broadband service has reached 46% of the total cities and municipalities nationwide as of end-September 2020.
The company said its capacity likewise continued to expand, with the total number of fiber ports available for the use of new customers increasing to 3.81 million by end-September 2020.
PLDT said it plans to raise the number of fiber ports by 336,000 more, such that its fiber and copper ports will total 4.15 million by the end of 2020.
In areas where its fiber service is not yet available, PLDT said it continues to deploy its wireless Home WiFi service powered by its mobile subsidiary Smart’s 4G/LTE network.
“We believe that in about a year or two, the ability of delivering fixed wireless services to the homes will increase significantly. PLDT is focusing on fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) which is considered future proof. We think FTTH will still remain the best platform to deliver services like entertainment, video, sports, and the like,” said PLDT chairman CEO Manuel V. Pangilinan.
The FTTH roll-out, the company said, serves the data connectivity needs of Filipinos in the country, especially during the pandemic times when more people are working and studying from home.
“With this broadband network, PLDT is not only increasing the number of new FTTH connections, we have also launched a program to convert all our customers still using copper-based ADSL services, to fiber-powered services over the next 18 months,” said PLDT chief revenue officer and Smart president Alfredo S. Panlilio.
Faced with the challenge of meeting the surging demands for PLDT’s fiber-powered broadband service especially during the enhanced community quarantine months, the company said its network service teams have worked out how to operate under pandemic conditions to ramp up their installation capacity.
“We continue to improve in finding ways to make things easier and simpler for our customers. Our direction is to go digital — thus the drive to enable our customers to do more online: get their bills, pay their bills, get help. This is also a needed shift given the global situation today where customers must stay safe in their homes,” said PLDT-Smart first vice president and commercial operations head Marco Borlongan.
He added that with the current general community quarantine, PLDT and Smart have been able to reinstate the manpower needed to operate frontline teams.
“Most of our stores have re-opened. Our network field teams are tirelessly working to fulfill installation and repair requests. Our call center is now back to serving customers 24 hours a day for repair-related concerns,” Borlongan said.
The total footprint of PLDT’s fiber-optic network has expanded to 395,000 kilometers in the first nine months of 2020, the company said.