Filipino telco Globe Telecom has announced that it will launch its commercial 5G networks in the second quarter of 2019, according to the company’s CEO, Ernest Cu.
Cu said that the need for 5G in The Philippines is being driven by surging demand for online content, specifically HD TV streaming services.
“People are watching more and more video. As video traffic goes up, we have to deliver higher speeds, not only to one screen but multiple screens in a household,” Cu told reporters from Filipino media outlet, The Inquirer.
President Duterte has said that The Philippines’ telecoms sector desperately needs a third player in order to break up the stale duopoly of Globe and Smart Telecom, and inject some urgency into the sector. The proposed third telco will be 51 per cent Filipino owned joint venture with a foreign player, widely rumoured to be China Telecom. Despite President Duterte’s high profile assurances to the media that launching the third telco is a matter of national urgency, China Telecom has remained tight lipped about any potential involvement.
It appears that the mere threat of competition may have been enough to spur Globe into life, as it looks to win the race to be first for 5G in the country. As it stands, Globe Telecom will be the first operator to roll out 5G across The Philippines. However, the country’s long awaited third telco, will surely look to challenge that, when it arrives on the scene later this year. – Total Telecom