Senate extends Smart franchise by another 25 years

The Senate has just approved a bill that extends the Smart Communications franchise by another 25 years. Along with it, the company is also strongly urged to further widen its coverage and reach distant places that usually don’t have a reliable signal. This is in case calamity strikes and network services are of utmost importance to reach out for help.

GMA News Online reports that the bill grants Smart a franchise to “establish, install, maintain, lease and operate integrated telecommunications/computer/electronic services, and stations throughout the country for public, domestic and international telecommunications.”

The measure was backed by Senator Grace Poe who said that the extension basically protects the interest of telecom users with the first amendment dropping the term ‘co-use’ so as to avoid being “invoked in employing anti-competition practices.”

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Also, an amendment was made by Senator Gatchalian to introduce Mobile Number Portability (MNP) to the bill. Smart is to set up a mechanism for the MNP and barred from installing features that’ll hamper nationwide implementation. The National Telecommunications Commission shall then issue rules and regulations.

So far, there are a number of provinces that already receive stable connections and even fast LTE speeds. Although, we’re still hearing reports of areas with a more challenging signal reception. Hopefully, these will all be addressed in the coming years.

Updated to include MNP measures.


Kevin Bruce Francisco is the Senior Editor and Video Producer for YugaTech. He's a Digital Filmmaking graduate who's always either daydreaming of traveling or actually going places on his bike. Follow him on Twitter for more tech updates @kevincofrancis.

4 Responses

  1. watda says:

    sana short term lang binigay nila muna. ipapa improve yung network nila within that period.kung magawa nila yun tsaka gawing long term.

    not related.
    open daw ang 2 para sa competition, pero pag maypapasok haharangin o di kaya bibilhin agad.

  2. Bhen says:

    i “hope” the senator thought of giving conditional franchise extension like maybe SMART can be asked to present their improvement plan and if they did not meet that, the senate can set a penalty fee or better yet revoke their franchise anytime. I think, that’s a better way to serve public interest.

  3. K L says:

    sus! sana ni revoke nalang tapos take over ng government… bulok kasi PLDT parent company pa. walang fiber samin. go GLOBE!

  4. Miss Call says:

    “Urged” does not equal enforceable legislation. Change is coming.

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