Filipino fixed and mobile operator Globe Telecom (including Innove) says it is on track to go live with its broadband wireless access (BWA) 5G service in the next two months, Globe vice president for Product Development Francisco Claravall is cited by local press as saying. ‘Our 5G commercial proposition is geared towards connecting more Filipino homes via fixed wireless broadband before the end of the second quarter this year,’ Claravall said in a text message, mirroring an earlier announcement from Globe president and CEO Ernest Cu who slated launch for Q2. ‘We have prepared our network since late 2017 by installing Massive MIMO technology to make it 5G ready,’ he added.
Meanwhile, Globe rival PLDT (including Smart Communications and Sun Cellular) – which earlier this week tapped Cisco to develop its 5G-ready transport network infrastructure – has now said it aims to launch its own 5G platform in November 2019. As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in November 2018 PLDT said it expects to have deployed its 5G networks in the Philippines by H2 2019. Officials of the telco and its mobile division confirmed plans to roll out the new platform in schools, techno-parks and business centres. PLDT-Smart president of technology strategy and transformation, Czar Lopez, was quoted as saying: ‘On 5G it’s not just about speed, it is also about greater capacity and also lower latency’, while fellow VP Mitch Locsin confirmed that the operator is also upgrading its cell towers to accommodate 5G equipment, as well as adding more towers to accelerate the rollout of fifth-generation technologies. The latest disclosure did not clarify if the initial launch will include fully mobile services or BWA.