Monday, May 27, 2024

DICT backs Senate bill aiming to impose Net neutrality standard

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) has thrown its support behind Senate Bill No. 2103 which aims to impose neutrality standard on the Internet industry, alongside prescribed norms for a standardized reliability and affordability of telecommunication services.

“We support the objective of this bill to raise the standard of our Internet connectivity services. The government should take the lead in pushing for digital transformation as we pursue equitable access to connectivity for the Filipino people,” DICT secretary Gregorio “Gringo” B. Honasan II said in a statement.

The bill, titled “An Act Protecting Internet Consumers and Promoting Net Neutrality in Data Transmissions, and for Other Purposes,” was filed by Sen. Imee Marcos in a bid to level the playing field for the Internet industry so that “a tiny blog can reach readers just as well as the social media giants,” according to the bill’s explanatory note.

Marcos stated that the bill seeks to address the variable access of people to Internet connectivity and content by ensuring that Internet access services are provided equally, without discrimination, restriction or interference.

The legislative measure aims to help improve the country’s Internet connectivity performance and boost the Philippines’ ranking in the international field.

As of March 2021, the Philippines ranked 86th for mobile and 81st for fixed broadband in terms of average download speed, according to the Ookla Speedtest Global Index report. The country recorded an average download speed of 46.25 Mbps for fixed broadband and 25.43 Mbps for mobile.

This showed an increase from the March 2019 average download speed of 19.51 Mbps for fixed broadband and 15.06 Mbps for mobile. This translates to a 137.06% increase for fixed broadband and 68.865 % increase for mobile after two years.

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