Dito vows access in far-flung areas, aims to cover over 80% of population in 5 years

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 22)— The country’s new telecommunications player has vowed to provide more access to people in far-flung and “underserved” areas in the Philippines, as it targets to expand its population coverage to over 80 percent within five years of its operations.

“It’s not just about profit, it’s also about serving those people, especially in the far-flung areas who are not able to access education, news, information because of the lack of coverage,” Atty. Adel Tamano, chief administrative officer of Dito Telecommunity, told CNN Philippines' The Source on Tuesday. “We hope to be able to address that within our 5-year commitment period.

“Our government commitment is 87 percent after our fifth year of operation, but our internal goal is really well beyond that,” he stressed.

For its first-year commitment to the government, Dito has targeted to cover 37 percent of the population. Under its certificate of public convenience and necessity, the company is also expected to provide an internet speed of 27 megabits per second (mbps).

Tamano remained confident that Dito would be able to deliver these technical audit requirements within the deadline provided by the National Telecommunications Commission, which is in January of next year. He added the firm is “on track” for the anticipated market rollout in March 2021.

The Philippines has an average mobile internet download speed of 7 mbps and an average upload speed of 2.2 mbps, according to a May report by international analytics company Opensignal.

Tamano acknowledged that achieving the higher speed target is not going to be easy, but he assured that the company would be using the latest technology in order to achieve the goal.

“Our standard is quite high to reach 27 mbps. But we’re very confident using the latest technology and having no legacy systems, we will be able to reach that commitment to government,” Tamano said.

He said the company is also aspiring to reach the capacities of neighboring countries such as Singapore and South Korea in the succeeding years of the company's operations.