Filipino operator NOW Telecom has revealed plans to spend USD713 million over five years to develop a 5G fixed wireless access (FWA) network in the National Capital Region (NCR). Under the plan the telco aims to provide customers with broadband speeds of up to 10Gbps, a ten-fold increase on the peak speed it is currently able to offer.
The Philippine Star writes that NOW Telecom envisages spending USD152 million in the first three years, mainly to purchase new 5G radio equipment, with a view to building on its current customer base which comprises business users, and people living in high-end homes/apartments in high-density residential areas. ‘NOW is well positioned to take advantage of the opportunity in the enterprise and high-end residential market in the Philippines via 5G FWA. With fairly limited competition in this space, there is a strong opportunity for NOW to gain a profitable market share, at first in NCR,’ its newly appointed president and COO Rene Rosales said, adding: ‘Our affiliate NOW Corp has a deep understanding of the role of ICT in enterprises and we are in a position to become the end-to-end service provider for both ICT and broadband services.’
As previously reported by CommsUpdate, in October 2019 NOW Telecom and NOW Corp signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with South Korean group SK Telecom to collaborate on the deployment of a commercial fifth-generation (mobile) network in the Philippines. In a statement at the time, the three parties confirmed their aim to establish a 5G network and attendant advanced services in Manila – where NOW Corp is headquartered and already provides broadband internet, IPTV, software and B2B services via affiliate NOW Telecom. The Filipino operators hopes to take advantage of SK Telecom’s ‘cutting-edge 5G technologies’, with the latter also looking to provide ‘5G-related technological consulting and supply in-building 5G technologies and 5G-enabled enterprise applications to NOW’. Separately, NOW Telecom has also entered into agreements for various projects with Vietnam’s Viettel.