Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Smart BRO Tops ISP Race

Smart Communications Inc. has claimed the top spot in the broadband war among the Internet Service Providers (ISPs) who are comprised mostly  of telecommunication firms in the Philippines. In its recent report, the mobile network operator claims that over 8.3 million Filipinos have been accessing the Internet through their fixed and portable wireless facilities more popularly known as Smart BRO. Smart says majority, or 7 million, of them are accessing the Internet on their mobile phones either through post- or pre-paid accounts. Their remaining 1.3 million are subscribed to broadband products that run on what is referred to as ‘fixed wireless’ in industry lingo. The reported figure puts Smart’s broadband users account to about 30% of the total Internet users in the country which was pegged at 29.7 million as of June 2010.

Globe Telecom, Smart's rival company, reported that it has 930,000 total broadband users in June 2010 and breached the one-million mark last September. The country's second largest mobile service provider said the number of their broadband clients has been growing at a compounded annual rate of 123% since 2006. Digital Telecommunications Philippines, Inc., another mobile service provider and operator of Sun Broadband, has about 400,000 broadband Internet users.

Wireless broadband subscribers of Smart overtook the wired subscribers of the entire PLDT group to which it belongs way back in 2007. Considering that the Philippines an archipelago of over 7,100 islands, experts and industry players have banked on the wireless broadband technology for growth. In fact, many neighborhood-based Internet cafés in remote areas of the country depend on Smart BRO for their broadband connection.

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