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PHL has poorest, slowest LTE broadband in the world — int'l survey

After the controversy over data caps imposed by Globe Telecom and Smart Communications, another issue is hounding giant telcos in the Philippines, this time with Long Term Evolution (LTE) standard in the mobile network technology, also known as 4G.

A survey by OpenSignal, a company that created impartial coverage maps of mobile networks, showed that the Philippines has the poorest and slowest LTE broadband internet access and coverage in the world.

'Worst performing network'

Six million users from around the world were asked to comment on download speed and proportion of time spent with LTE access during the second half of 2013. These two matrices were then combined to “build a picture of true network performance.”

Both Smart and Globe were classified under “Poor coverage and slow” in the quadrant graph entitled The Breadth of LTE Performance.

“Globe Philippines is the worst performing network,” the OpenSignal article said.

The graph showed that while Globe was said to be faster than Smart, it was used less often compared to the latter.

The Philippines is also last place when it comes to both speed and time spent on LTE.

Previous issue: Data cap on 3G postpaid plans

Aside from poor LTE connection, both Globe and Smart recently faced users' disdain over the networks' data caps on unlimited postpaid plans where 3G connections are reduced to 2G when users reach a certain limit.

Globe responded by showing an infographic on their Fair Use Policy (FUP) where they showed that their 3Gb monthly data limit is “more than enough for your monthly mobile data needs.”

Smart's public affairs chief Ramon Isberto, however, said that the telco has been flexible with its FUP.

“This has not been an issue for us largely because we have more than sufficient capacity to handle our mobile data traffic,” Isberto said in an email to GMA News Online on Wednesday.

Also, he said Smart is studying data traffic patterns and customer data usage on their network for an updated fair-use policy.

OpenSignal is a company that is creating a comprehensive database of cellular phone towers,  signal strength readings, and Wi-Fi access points around the world. They've been collecting information about wireless networks from users through the OpenSignal app. — Kim Luces /LBG, GMA News