PLDT, Smart secures 22,000 permits amid network expansion

PLDT Inc. and its wireless arm Smart Communications, Inc. said that it has secured 22,000 fixed and wireless permits since the government fast-tracked approvals last year.

Local government units have been speeding up permit processing for projects aimed at improving telecommunications infrastructure.

PLDT in a statement Friday said that the faster approvals helped improve internet speeds and customer experience.

“Our nation-widest coverage through wireless and fiber footprint expansion strengthens our foundation as the only integrated telco in the country,” PLDT Inc. and Smart Communications President and Chief Executive Officer Alfredo S. Panlilio said.

“Speed in the homes is strengthened by our ongoing fiber rollout, while 5G continues to lift the wireless experience.”

PLDT fiber infrastructure by the end of March reached over 478,000 kilometers.

Philippine internet speeds slightly increased in May, according to a report from US internet testing and analysis company Ookla.

Average fixed broadband download speeds increased to 58.73 megabits per second (Mbps) in May from 49.31 Mbps a month earlier, Ookla said. Average mobile download speeds inched up to 31.97 Mbps in May from 29.12 Mbps in April.

“The latest results placed the country at 77th and 65th, respectively, and represent significant improvements from the April 2021 rankings (7 places and 15 places up, respectively),” PLDT said.

Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Jenina P. Ibanez

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