DITO Telecommunity Corp., a joint venture of businessman Dennis Uy and China Telecom Corp., said over the weekend it started the first wave of friendly user test program in preparation for the launch of its services by March 2021.
“We wish to confirm that we have now in fact expanded our friendly user test for our employees and selected partners only for the first wave,” DITO chief administrative officer Adel Tamano said.
“This program has been in place in controlled environments since March of this year when DITO made its first phone and video calls two months ahead of schedule that signified that the core network is in place and has since expanded when the series of 5G phone and video calls were made last October 2020,” he said.
Tamano said the friendly user test, as mandated in its certificate of public convenience and necessity, was running in selected areas of the National Capital Region, the Visayas and Mindanao.
“We have been receiving requests from people very much interested to be part of the test. However, in as much as we are excited to make the much-awaited DITO service available to everyone, the qualified participants of the first wave of the test have long been preselected based on a number of criteria and are now tasked to run the network through its paces,” he said.
“We in DITO know fully well that during this period, there will still be issues that need to be fixed and adjustments to be made. With this exercise, we hope to ensure that come March 2021, we will be as close as we can to make real our commitment of providing world-class connectivity that Filipinos truly deserve,” Tamano said.
DITO completed the construction of 1,532 base stations as of Oct. 2, which the company said was more than enough to satisfy the minimum 37-percent population coverage that the company needed to meet for technical audit by January.
DITO was expecting to complete more than 2,000 base stations by end-2020.
The company spent over P150 billion for the initial rollout of its infrastructure and other operating expenses as part of its commitment to invest P250 billion over a five-year period to achieve 55 mbps of internet speed, covering 84 percent of the population.