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Smart tops LTE speed in Philippines

MANILA, Philippines - The wireless unit of PLDT Inc. currently delivers the fastest Long Term Evolution (LTE) service in the country, according to a recent JP Morgan study.

In a report based on the actual mobile experience of OpenSignal app users, JP Morgan said Smart Communications Inc. “leads in overall LTE download speeds and at regional levels.”

Through the OpenSignal app, mobile data users can run their own speed tests.

Smart recorded an average LTE download speed of 10.91 Mbps at the country level from December last year to February this year, while rival Globe Telecom Inc. had an average download speed of 7.31 Mbps.

In Metro Manila, Smart had an average LTE download speed of 11.76 Mbps, faster than Globe’s 7.65 Mbps.

Smart had an average LTE download speed of 8.56 Mbps in South Luzon, ahead of Globe’s 7.01 Mbps.

In the Visayas, Smart had an average download speed of 10.42 Mbps, better than Globe’s 7.75 Mbps.

Smart also stayed ahead of competition in terms of average 3G download speeds through its average 2.22 Mbps at the country level compared to Globe’s 2.19 Mbps.

In Metro Manila, Smart had an average 3G download speed of 3.25 Mbps, beating Globe’s 2.68 Mbps.

The 3G figures are Smart’s highest in the last eight testing periods.

“We are happy to know that our subscribers are increasingly enjoying our newest and fastest LTE network. We have made intensive capital outlay to accelerate the deployment of LTE sites because LTE significantly boosts the speed, quality, and reliability of our mobile data service,” PLDT-Smart chief technology and information advisor Joachim Horn said.

While the J.P. Morgan study did not include Mindanao, he said subscribers in Metro Davao are enjoying better speeds as the telco has completed its network improvement program there.

At present, Smart is utilizing low frequency bands such as the 700 Megahertz (MHz) and the 850 MHz for its cell sites to provide subscribers better indoor coverage.

It is likewise deploying high-frequency bands like 1800 MHz and 2100 MHz to allow cell sites to handle greater mobile data traffic.

PLDT and Smart are investing to improve their network capacity and coverage in line with its commitment to make LTE available to 95 percent of the country’s cities and municipalities by the end of 2018.

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