Smart upgrades LTE network in Boracay

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SMART Communications, Inc. said it has upgraded its long term evolution (LTE) network in Boracay in anticipation of tourists flocking to the island this summer.

In a statement Thursday, the PLDT wireless subsidiary said it has now installed its LTE technology to 83% of its sites in Boracay. It added, 80% of these sites have been upgraded to render LTE-advanced (LTE-A) network, which delivers mobile data at greater speeds.

“With our expanded networks, tourists can share the beauty of Boracay to the world, enjoy a better video streaming and mobile gaming experience, as well as access key online services like banking and e-commerce while on the island,” PLDT-Smart Senior Vice President for Network Planning and Engineering Mario G. Tamayo said in the statement.

The company noted it had previously picked Boracay to be a pioneer in many technological developments offered by the company, such as when it started offering LTE in the island in 2012 and LTE-A in 2016.

Mr. Tamayo said the ongoing initiative of Smart to upgrade its network all over the Philippines is expected to help spur business growth in remote locations.

“Through our continuing network upgrade efforts across the country, we are empowering tourists, residents and local businesses alike by providing them with quality connectivity wherever they may be,” he was quoted as saying.

Smart ended 2018 with about 16,200 LTE base stations installed all over the country, increasing 86% from in 2017. The number of third generation (3G) base stations also grew 17% to about 11,500.

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. — Denise A. Valdez