PLDT group announced on Thursday that it fired up additional fifth-generation (5G) base stations in Cavite province, with the service now available in 87% of its cities and towns.

The new 5G base stations are in the cities of Trece Martires, General Trias, Dasmariñas, Tagaytay, Cavite, and Imus, PLDT Inc. and its wireless arm Smart Communications, Inc. said in an e-mailed statement.

“Smart LTE (long-term evolution) is also available across Cavite, enabling high-speed mobile data service for customers with LTE handsets,” the group noted.

“Underpinning these LTE, 5G, and Wi-Fi services is PLDT’s fiber infrastructure, the country’s most extensive at over 715,000 kilometers as of end-November,” it added.

Cavite Governor Juanito Victor “Jonvic” C. Remulla said the goal is to make the province “the most technologically advanced and the least stressful province to live in in the country.”

Smart, according to the PLDT group, has the most mobile users in the country, with 40 million.

The group announced in July last year that it had partnered with the Cavite local government through its business arm PLDT Enterprise and Smart for the rollout of a fiber network for the province’s digital roadmap towards becoming a “Smart City.”

The provincial government of Cavite and the PLDT group would activate the Cavite Managed Broadband Network Service, an end-to-end solution that would enable internet to the province’s 23 cities and municipalities, PLDT group said.

The project includes the provision of a fully underground fiber optic cable backbone. It would provide free internet access to more than 23 cities and municipalities, 129 public elementary and secondary schools, and 42 public places.

Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Arjay L. Balinbin