Smart fires up first 5G SA network in Makati, Philippines

Smart fires up first 5G SA network in Makati, Philippines

Smart Communications, the mobile arm of Philippines telecoms giant PLDT Inc., has switched on its 5G Standalone (SA) mobile network in Makati City, powering up one of the first 5G SA networks in the world.

Smart, which first began exploring 5G in 2016, claimed the 5G SA sites in Makati further ramps up the company’s 5G leadership and cements its position at the forefront of 5G innovations in the country.

“Through the years, PLDT and Smart have been at the forefront of breakthrough innovations in the telco industry, including 5G. With the first batch of our 5G SA sites now fully operational, we are starting to see the true capabilities of 5G, which will play a critical role in the advancement of massive IoT, healthcare, and smart cities, delivering a truly world-class customer experience,” PLDT Inc. and Smart President and CEO Alfredo Panlilio said.

"Technology plays an important role in today's society as evidently seen during the pandemic. 5G and LTE have provided us with the means to stay connected with our loved ones, work, and study from our homes, and find means to keep ourselves entertained as we continue to keep our families safe. 5G SA, as an innovation platform, will create new opportunities for enterprises and consumers that will maximize its ultra-reliable and low latency capabilities.

This enables industrial automation, autonomous mobile robotics deployment, safe remote crane operations, fast response in gaming and interactive video streaming, among others. We are creating opportunities for the Filipino Enterprises to compete in the global arena," said Mario G. Tamayo, Head of Technology at PLDT and Smart.

In firing up its first 5G SA sites at the PLDT and Smart headquarters in Makati, Smart has upgraded its 5G facilities, enabling them to connect with the 5G core network, said a press release.

With 5G SA in place, Smart can soon offer Voice over New Radio (VoNR) and network slicing capabilities, as well as support new industrial and enterprise opportunities, it said.

Smart made its first successful VoNR call as early as July this year at the Technolab in Smart Tower in Makati City.

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