Filtered By: Money

Smart, Globe reiterate push to extend deadline for SIM registration

Dominant telcos Smart Communications Inc. and Globe Telecom Inc. on Thursday renewed their call for the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) to extend the SIM registration deadline.

In a statement, Globe reiterated its appeal for the extension of the April 26, 2023 deadline for mobile subscribers to register their SIMs “so customers can obtain valid IDs— a key requirement for SIM registration that many SIM users lack, preventing them from completing registration.”

Likewise, PLDT-Smart Corporate Communications head Cathy Yang said an extension will help its subscribers secure valid IDs or proofs needed to register their SIMs.

Yang said 55.1% or 36.5 million of Smart’s subscribers have already registered and the telco does not want “to alienate or leave behind the remaining 45% who have not yet registered.”

She said that “extending the deadline will give our remaining 45% subscriber base ample time to register.”

“At present, all 160 million subscribers in the country are given only 121 days to register. Comparatively, in other countries like Indonesia and India, PTEs (public telecommunications entities) were given one to two years of a registration window to better prepare for and promote SIM registration,” Yang said.

The DICT, with only a week before the registration period expires, said that there is no extension of SIM registration “at this point” as urged unregistered subscribers to have their SIMs registered in the databases of the service providers.

As the deadline draws near, Globe called on the government to allow the use of alternative forms of identification for SIM registration, citing that many citizens may not possess official government papers.

Failure to register will result in the deactivation of SIMs.

The deactivation of SIM will prevent a subscriber from receiving and sending calls and text messages and accessing mobile applications and digital wallets.

DITO Telecommunity Corp. chief administrative officer Adel Tamano, for his part, said that “as much as we have stated our support to the call for extension, we in DITO have made our systems ready for both extension and non-extension.”

“Commercial-wise, by the deadline, we are confident that more than a majority of our active subscribers would have already registered,” Tamano said.

As of April 18, 2023, only 44.15% of the 168 million subscriber base nationwide had registered their SIMs.

The figure is equivalent to 74,182,402 registered SIMs, the bulk of which are from Smart comprising 36,558,127 registered subscribers.

Globe followed with 32,224,277, while DITO accounted fo 5,399,998.

Under the SIM Card Registration Act, signed into law in October 2022, those who have SIMs have 180 days from the effectivity of the law to register their numbers, or until April 26, 2023.

The law also provides that the DICT can extend the deadline for another 120 days as it deems necessary. —VAL, GMA Integrated News

Tags: Ditto, SIM, DICT