Smart wins all categories in Q1 Opensignal Awards
PLDT wireless unit Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart) has bagged all categories in the latest Philippines Mobile Network Experience Awards by the independent mobile analytics firm Opensignal.
According to Opensignal’s report, which covers the period from January 1 to March 31, 2021, Smart beats the competition across all metrics in three essential aspects of service: Coverage (4G Coverage Experience, 4G Availability), Speed (Download and Upload Speed) and Experience (Games, Video and Voice app). This is the first time an operator in the country has won decisively in all categories.
“This breakthrough validates our unrelenting work towards delivering the best experience to our customers across the country and gives us renewed energy to stay the course,” said Smart Communications President and CEO and PLDT Chief Revenue Officer Alfredo S. Panlilio. “We are no longer benchmarking ourselves with local competition but with other telcos in the region. By doing this, we are not just improving Smart but also the internet speed of the Philippines,” He added.
The telco has clinched a dominant lead in all categories across regions, particularly in terms of Games Experience, where it dominated over its competitor in every region.
“Smart has achieved a rare and remarkable achievement — it wins all seven of our awards for the national mobile experience. In previous reports, it has come close to this mark, but this is the first time that it has done so,” said Sam Fenwick, Opensignal senior analyst.
The telco has defended the five awards it won in Opensignal’s last report. Smart converted a joint win on Games Experience into an outright win and successfully reclaimed the Voice App Experience award, which Globe won last time around.
“We will not rest on our laurels. We will continue putting in the hard work that has made Smart the nation’s fastest network with the nation widest 4G coverage. Despite sweeping the awards, Smart aims to be even faster by continuing to expand our 5G network, which now has over 2,500 sites,” said Mario G. Tamayo, Head of Technology at PLDT and Smart.
Opensignal revealed that Smart has a score of 60.9 points out of 100 for Video Experience, which was higher than Globe’s score of 53.1.
Moreover, Smart also remains ahead in 4G Availability, which is determined as the proportion of time 4G users spend connected to 4G or LTE, as well as in terms of 4G Coverage Experience, a measure of how mobile subscribers experience 4G coverage on an operator’s network.
The telco also won the Download Speed and Upload Speed Experience categories. Opensignal noted that Smart’s Download Speed Experience score rose by 29.5% since their last report.
However, in terms of Voice App Experience, the mobile analytics firm said Smart had taken back the Voice App Experience award, driven by an 11.9-point (19.4%) increase in Smart’s score to 73.4 points.
As per Smart, enabling this level of performance is PLDT’s fiber infrastructure, the country’s most extensive at 429,000 kilometers. This fiber network also supports Smart’s mobile network, now covering 96% of the population from Batanes to Tawi-Tawi.
These initiatives form a huge part of PLDT’s capital expenditures, totaling PHP 460.7 billion in the last ten years. The company revealed that they are prepared to invest between PHP 88 billion and PHP 92 billion in capital expenditures in 2021 to address the growing data needs of their fixed and wireless customers.