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Five Reasons why Fiber Internet might not reach your home

If fiber connectivity is the key to bandwidth problems and slow internet in the Philippines, then why is it slow to penetrate most residential homes? We asked around talked to folks familiar with the problem — technicians, friends who applied for fiber, telco reps and even from our own experiences in the past to get fiber connection to the home.

1) You live in a faraway area or a small island. It will be close to impossible to get fiber to a small island due to high cost. Unless of course, it’s a hot spot of a lot of travelers like Boracay. The most preferred last mile is still wireless as it is faster and cheaper to deploy.

2) Population density is low. Regardless if you’re on an island or mainland, if your locality (or municipality) has low population density, the viability to get access to a fiber connection is slim. Just like in #1, the preferred last mile solution for 3rd to 6th class municipalities would be either the old legacy wires or fixed wireless.

3) Exclusive village or subdivision contracts. Some subdivisions or villages have exclusive contracts or agreements with certain ISP providers. This prohibits newer players to come in do the ground work for new fiber lines.

4) Fiber to the curb. Usually an installation just outside of villages or subdivisions so laying out from there to the home inside the village may still require additional investment from the subscriber. A friend in Kapitolyo, Pasig wanted to get fiber from the curb directly to their home inside the village which is around 250 meters long so they have to shoulder around Php25,000 for the entire length of the line. That initial investment seemed a bit steep just to get a fiber installation, assuming you can actually afford it. But that’s how things work these days, even with utilities such as cable, electricity and water — you have to pay for the extra line to your house.

Newly installed fiber connection just outside the house. It used to be just outside the village gate and home subscribers need to pay the extra Php8,000 to Php25,000 for extending the line inside the village.

5) Condo Property Management will not upgrade. Most of the old condominiums already have the infrastructure which is mostly the old legacy technology. These don’t get replaced easily with new fiber lines because of the cost implications to the property management. A telco manager recently told us it is easier for them to roll out fiber horizontally and it’s more challenging vertically because condo management is harder to deal with especially with internal regulations.

Fiber cables have become much cheaper now so the roll out to the home becomes more reasonable. To make it more cost-effective to existing players, the middle-mile needs support from the government. This can be done by laying out the conduits every time there are new roads created by DPWH so that ISPs can either lease out the connections or co-own by sharing the additional expenses during the road construction.

It may take many more years, even decades, until we can see each and every household or condo unit gain access to fast fiber connection. At least we’re getting there.

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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8 Responses

  1. David says:

    The PLDT techs have been telling me for over a year there’s fiber in my area, but when I try to apply for it, it’s not available. Maybe 500 meters away–so close, it almost hurts.

    The last tech/contractor to come out recently said they have plans to expand to the whole area, but they haven’t been approved.

  2. Paratinghuli says:

    It may take many more years, even decades, until we can see each and every household…by that time, fiber will be obsolete…even 5G is now being tested.

    • triadwarfare says:

      Fiber will never be obsolete as we haven’t even reached its fullest potential yet. ISPs can replace frontend and backend equipment and keep the same cable.

      Meanwhile, while maximum download speeds continue to improve, congestion management isn’t improving that well, hence, our wireless ISPs are doing away with unlimited data in favor of capped data and FUP

  3. mark tan says:

    Dito sa amin fiber na, kakabit lang, lowest ping 1ms :) alabang area

  4. archie says:

    Number 3 and 5: Pera pera lang talaga at konting corruption. Pagdating sa 3 dapat iimpose ng home owners ang karapatan nila na magkaroon ng iba pang choices for ISPs. Kaya namatay ang wi-tribe sa lugar namin dahil kinokontrata ng pldt ang may-ari ng subdivision na may kasamang sweet deals.

  5. Mark says:

    Very true… Having a high speed and reliable net speed in PH is soooo expensive. Most of the people who have subscribe to this are rich. Corruption sucks.

  6. Malay Sison says:

    Haay… discrimination to eh. So mayaman lang ang pwedeng magkaron ng mabilis na net?

  7. ghhj says:

    Magaling ksi ung gobyerno natin.. Magaling mambulsa…

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