Local telcos continued to scale up the nationwide deployment of 5th Generation (5G) wireless technology in the first half of the year as demand for the service surges.
In the first semester alone, Globe Telecom Inc. built 933 sites and its 5G network outdoor coverage reached 97 percent of the National Capital Region and 86 percent of key cities in Visayas and Mindanao, the telco disclosed Monday, August 29.
Smart Communications, Inc. rolled out 77,100 total base stations throughout the archipelago, including 7,300 5G base stations, in the same period.
Compared to a year ago, Smart rolled out 2,500 additional 5G base stations, bringing its 3G, 4G/Long Term Evolution (LTE) and 5G population coverage at 97 percent as of end-June.
“Globe has been ramping up its rollout amid rising demand for 5G connectivity,” says Joel Agustin, SVP and head of network planning and engineering.
“The drive to build more and faster is fueled by our desire to deliver more improvements in our customer service experience that are consistent and reliable,” he added.
As of mid-2022, Globe has logged some 2.7 million devices in its 5G network, showing the growing popularity of 5G.
Globe is also accelerating its 5G roaming rollout to more countries in Asia, the Middle East, and Europe.
On the other hand, Smart rolled out the bulk of its additional 5G base stations in Metro Manila in Las Piñas, Makati, Mandaluyong, Manila, Muntinlupa, Parañaque, Pasay, Quezon City and Taguig.
The telco also deployed 5G in Tarlac City; Silang in Cavite; Cabuyao, Lumban and Santa Rosa in Laguna; Iloilo City and Dumangas in Iloilo.
Bacolod and Sagay in Negros Occidental were covered as well as the cities of Cebu, Lapu-Lapu, and Mandaue in Cebu; Baybay, Ormoc and Palo in Leyte.
The telco likewise deployed 5G in Pagadian and Zamboanga in Zamboanga del Sur; Cagayan de Oro City; Butuan City in Agusan del Norte; Digos and Davao in Davao del Sur.
5G technology is the next generation of wireless internet connectivity with fiber-fast speeds of up to 100 Mbps, up to 20 times faster than LTE.
It offers lower latency, higher bandwidth, and more reliable internet connections than 4G.
This year, 5G mobile subscriptions will surpass one billion, according to the latest Ericsson Mobility Report.
In South East Asia and Oceania, which includes the Philippines, 5G subscriptions totaled 15 million at the end of 2021 and are expected to more than double in 2022.