THE total revenue of telecommunications companies in the Philippines is expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4% during 2021-2026, with subscriptions to fifth-generation (5G) services seen growing at a “brisk pace,” according to London-based data analytics company GlobalData Plc.

In its analysis report released last month, GlobalData said the progress in telecom revenue will be mainly supported by mobile data and fixed broadband segments.

Citing its research, GlobalData said the mobile voice service revenue in the country will decrease over 2021-2026 in line with the constant decline in mobile voice average revenue per user or ARPU, as telcos extend unlimited voice minutes as part of their packaged plans.

Meanwhile, mobile data service revenue is expected to increase at 7.8% over the period “driven by the projected rise in mobile internet subscriptions, growth in higher ARPU-yielding 5G subscriptions and a steady rise in the consumption of mobile data services.”

Aasif Iqbal, telecom analyst at GlobalData, said: “4G services accounted for 80.4% of the total mobile subscriptions in 2021 and will remain the leading mobile technology through 2026.”

“5G subscriptions will however increase at a brisk pace over the forecast period, supported by 5G network expansion efforts by operators like PLDT and Globe Telecom across the country.”

GlobalData also expects revenue from the fixed voice segment to grow over the forecast period driven by the subscription gains in the voice over internet protocol or VoIP segment.

“Fixed broadband service revenue will also increase during the forecast period, driven by a steady rise in fiber-to-the-home subscriptions, and continued growth in DSL (digital subscriber line), cable internet, and fixed wireless subscriptions,” GlobalData noted.

It said that the acceleration in the adoption of fiber-optic broadband services in the country can be attributed to the rising demand for high-speed data services and the expansion of fiber-optic network infrastructure by local government and service coverage by operators.

“For instance, PLDT has added 489,000 new fiber subscriptions and has deployed 1.29 million new fiber ports in the first nine months of 2022,” GlobalData said.

On Monday, Globe Telecom said it had successfully tested the 5G-standalone technology in various applications.

“The successful demonstration of 5G standalone with network slicing highlights the company’s commitment to driving innovation and providing new and improved services to its customers,” the telco said in a statement.

“The technology also opens up new opportunities for businesses across a range of industries, as it enables Globe to provide products and services that are tailored to specific demands,” it added. — Arjay L. Balinbin