PLDT defiant: refuses to cede spectrum frequencies to Globe

3 May 2011

Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT), which is in the throes of a takeover bid for fellow operator Digital Telecommunications (Digitel), has said it will not give up any mobile frequencies to number two player Globe Telecom and suggested it actually needs more, not less, spectrum. PLDT has defiantly claimed that it is more efficient at utilising its spectrum than Globe and optimisation is currently running at 406,000 subscribers per megahertz, compared with 303,000 for Globe. With takeover target Digitel’s mobile arm Sun Cellular running at 330,000 users per MHz, PLDT’s head of regulatory affairs Ray Espinosa argues that Globe’s opposition to its takeover plan stems directly from its desire to get its hands on more spectrum. He claims that Globe is sidestepping its own issues with efficiency in an effort to force PLDT to make concessions over how much frequency it holds. For its part though, Globe’s legal counsel Rodolfo Salalima has restated that the NTC’s role is to balance the frequencies held by rival operators and at the same time rationalise the distribution of said frequencies.

In a separate development Globe Telecom has confirmed it carried out a live speed test demonstration of HSPA+ technology on its network. The trials followed the announcement that the firm has successfully deployed HSPA+ on 19 sites in Metro Manila, covering Marikina, Quezon City, Makati, Pasay, Las Pinas, Taguig and the City of Manila. In the demonstration, the cellco achieved speeds of 8.55Mbps/1.02Mbps (downlink/uplink).