The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) and members of the Private Sector Advisory Council (PSAC) – Digital Infrastructure Group signed on Friday, July 21, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to establish a standardized Connectivity Index Rating in the Philippines.
The MOU was forged between DICT and major telecommunications companies Globe, PLDT-Smart, DITO, and Converge ICT.
“The benefits of having a nationwide benchmark for Internet quality in a particular area could not be overstated. For businesses and public institutions, the Connectivity Index Rating will allow them to optimize their connectivity requirements based on the volume of user-traffic that they accommodate in their area,” DICT secretary Ivan E. Uy said.
“The Connectivity Index Rating is also seen to push businesses to innovate and invest in quality connectivity solutions that will, among others, increase brand recognition and expand their customer base.”
The Connectivity Index Rating, initially proposed by telecommunications companies to PSAC, aligns with the council’s objective of fostering public-private partnerships to achieve the government’s economic objectives across various sectoral groups, including digital infrastructure.
The rating system will produce an accessible measure of indoor Internet experience quality and aims to empower consumers by providing them with clear insight into the connectivity performance of different establishments.
The index will assess a range of parameters including speed, accessibility, availability, and security of internet services.
The tool is expected to serve as a vital reference for property owners and government institutions, enabling them to ensure the necessary level of connectivity to accommodate user traffic in locations such as airports, shopping malls, hotels, libraries, restaurants and coffee shops.
Leaders from the telecommunications companies have expressed their support for the establishment of the Connectivity Index Rating.
“The signing of this Memorandum of Understanding is an important step towards truly enhancing the digital landscape of the country. Indoor service experience has been a common complaint among customers and the decision of selecting service providers, including which data plan to get lies in the hands of building and establishment owners,” said Ernest Cu, Globe Group president and CEO
“Through this rating, public and private sector players will be able to easily identify areas that need connectivity improvement, leading to efficient and effective network investments. Customers can immediately give feedback about their experience which will ultimately redound to improving overall internet service in the country.”
“This initiative is aligned with the PLDT Group’s commitment to ensure the highest possible quality of Internet and connectivity service for all Filipinos, as well as support the government’s thrust to digitally transform the Philippines,” said PLDT and Smart president and CEO Alfredo S. Panlilio.
“We started Converge with the goal of providing world-class broadband connectivity to all Filipinos. We strongly support the creation of a Connectivity Index Rating to help the public measure internet quality in indoor spaces. This benchmark will effectively inject transparency into the internet readiness of public spaces, and push property owners to improve their digital infrastructure as required by their users,” said Converge CEO Dennis Anthony Uy.
“We fully support the government’s aim to transform our economy through digitalization and connectivity… We can only achieve this through partnership and collaboration between the government and the telco sector,” said DITO Telecommunity CEO Dennis A. Uy.
The PSAC was established to create and strengthen innovative synergies between the private and public sectors. It is composed of business leaders and experts across six main sectoral groups — Agriculture, Digital Infrastructure, Jobs, Healthcare, Build-Build-Build, and Tourism.