As of June, Smart has fired up additional sites in the province’s main island, including the capital city of Puerto Princesa and the towns of Narra, Sofronio Espanola, Brooke’s Point, Bataraza and Aborlan.
After successfully deploying LTE in all of Palawan’s towns, including the country’s most remote cell site on Pag-Asa island in the West Philippine Sea, Smart has now activated 5G sites throughout the province, most notably in Puerto Princesa, El Nido, Coron, San Vicente, Roxas, Narra, Aborlan, Brooke’s Point, Bataraza, Taytay, Sofronio Espanola, Cuyo, Rizal and Quezon.
PLDT has also expanded the scope of its fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) infrastructure in Palawan, particularly in San Vicente, Roxas, Taytay, Narra, and Aborlan, outside of Puerto Princesa. The extension currently provides fiber access to thousands of households and businesses, providing the most dependable and fastest internet service. PLDT has also expanded its FTTH infrastructure in Puerto Princesa and El Nido, Palawan’s most popular tourist destination.
“This is part of our commitment to deliver world-class customer experience across the country, notwithstanding the challenges of rolling out our network in an archipelago,” said Mario G. Tamayo, Head of Technology at PLDT and Smart.
“With these developments, our customers in Palawan, including those in previously underserved areas, can experience improved data service, which is essential as the country transitions into the New Normal. Reliable connectivity is important in enabling families to stay in touch amid social distancing, employees to work safely from home, and students to participate in online learning,” Tamayo said, adding that based on internal data, connection speeds in Palawan have more than doubled for fixed customers, while they have increased by 27% for wireless customers between January and May 2021 this year as a result of these network improvements.
These efforts are part of PLDT and Smart’s ongoing construction of the country’s largest fully integrated network. Smart’s mobile network, which reaches 96 percent of the population from Batanes to Tawi-Tawi, has also been named the country’s fastest by third-party analytics organizations like as Ookla and Opensignal. PLDT’s fiber infrastructure, the country’s most extensive at over 478,000 kilometers as of end-March 2021, enables these mobile networks.
PLDT and Smart’s relentless push to provide connectivity for all is aligned with the group’s long-standing commitment to help the Philippines attain the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG #9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure.