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Smart readies "future-proof" network with 5G Technolab

PLDT's wireless unit Smart Communications is leading the charge for the fifth-generation (5G) technology adoption in the Philippines with the launch of its 5G Technolab.
Smart readies "future-proof" network with 5G Technolab
5G in PH this 2020!

The new facility will set its eyes on research and development, standardization, and testing of 5G services.

Even though 5G-compatible devices are not yet available in the market, Smart is advancing its steps towards realizing the goal of achieving a 5G-ready infrastructure by 2020.

In 2017, it inked a deal with China's Huawei "to shape the strategic and commercial development of the 5G ecosystem in the Philippines."

Even as 5G network technology is still at its early stages, and keeping in mind that it may take some time before 5G can be available commercially, we are already investing in pilot testing our 5G system and paving the way toward having a "5G-ready" network by 2020, said Ernesto R. Alberto, PLDT and Smart Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer.

Mario G. Tamayo, PLDT and Smart Senior Vice President for Network Planning and Engineering, said this opens opportunities for the local telco industry as 5G technology delivers extremely high speeds coupled with low latency, which can also allow Filipinos to explore for Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

We are working to transform our network to be able to address the needs of the future. To do this, we are investing not only in radio access, but also in upgrading the core and transport elements of our network, he said.

Tamayo noted the PLDT group has been aggressively deploying Long Term Evolution (LTE), LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) and carrier aggregation technology to bolster connectivity nationwide.

Earlier in April, Smart made its network ready for voice calls over wifi, or VoWifi, a way for subscribers to call using a wireless internet without the need for a third-party application. While last year, it also pioneered the Voice over Long-Term Evolution (LTE), or VoLTE, which allows voive calls to transmit over LTE network.

Parent company PLDT has earmarked a historic capital expenditures of PHP 58 billion to finance its massive network modernization.
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