Saturday, June 22, 2024

Globe, Smart reiterate call for extension of SIM registration deadline

Local telcos Globe and Smart Communications have repeated their call on the government to extend the deadline for SIM registration scheduled on April 26.  

The operators made the request via press statements issued on Thursday, April 20, even as they urged their respective subscribers to complete the registration process immediately.

“We encourage all our subscribers to register their SIMs as soon as possible to maintain uninterrupted access to mobile and broadband services. Pending response to our appeal for the government to extend the deadline, we call on all Globe SIM users to comply with the law,” said Globe Group president and CEO Ernest Cu.

Globe said it is asking the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) to extend the deadline so customers can obtain valid IDs – a key requirement for SIM registration that many SIM users lack, preventing them from completing registration.

Globe also requested the government to allow the use of alternative forms of identification for SIM registration, citing that many citizens may not possess official government papers.

To facilitate the registration process for as many subscribers as possible, Globe said it has transformed its 147 Stores and 25 EasyHubs into dedicated assistance centers.

Additionally, it has collaborated with local government units (LGUs), grocery stores, and malls to set up assisted registration booths at more than 100 locations across the Philippines.

Likewise, Globe said it taken part in the government-led SIM registration caravans to cater to subscribers in remote areas.

Smart, for its part, said 36.5 million or 55.1% of its total subscribers are already registered.

“Extending the deadline will give our remaining 45% subscriber base ample time to register. At present, all 160 million subscribers in the country are given only 121 days to register. Comparatively, in other countries like Indonesia and India, PTEs (public telecommunication entities) were given 1 to 2 years of a registration window to better prepare for and promote SIM registration,” said Cathy Yang, PLDT and Smart FVP and Group Head for Corporate Communications.

“The extension will also help our subscribers secure valid IDs or proofs needed to register their SIM. We don’t want to alienate or leave behind the remaining 45% who have not yet registered,” she added.

The DICT stated on Wednesday, April 19, that it has received the request of the telcos to extend the SIM registration period but stressed that “at this point, there is no extension of SIM registration”.

However, a party-list lawmaker has issued a statement supporting the decision of the DICT “not to extend the SIM registration deadline”.

“[This] will force all of the signup holdouts to wake up to the reality that they must register now or expect their unregistered SIMs to be deactivated,” Bagong Henerasyon party-list representative Bernadette Herrera said in a media statement.

Herrera added: “There is a long weekend coming up — from April 21 to 23 because of the Eidl Fitr holiday marking the end of Ramadan. Unregistered SIM subscribers should make time during the Ramadan holiday weekend to register their SIMs.”

Given the DICT decision, the lawmaker said unregistered SIM subscribers should accept the reality of the April 26 deadline.

“I do not expect the DICT to reverse its decision. I believe DICT has its reasons they expect the remaining unregistered would only be those who will make it before the deadline expires,” she said.

She then advised the telcos to cancel all the holidays and leaves of their customer service personnel.

“They should be all hands on deck and make extra effort to serve the registrants at their branches, service outlets, and service kiosks in the coming days,” she said.

Globe Prepaid, TM, and Globe-At-Home customers can register their SIMs for free via https://new.globe.com.ph/simreg or through the GlobeOne app. Globe Postpaid and Platinum customers, meanwhile, may confirm their details by texting SIMREG to 8080

New and existing Smart Prepaid and TNT subscribers may visit PLDT and Smart stores, or access Smart’s SIM registration portal through https://simreg.smart.com.ph. Postpaid users can simply text YES to 5858, while enterprise customers can confirm their registration through their authorized representatives.

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