Mobile data traffic significantly increased during the quarantine period in the country according to PLDT and Smart Communications Inc. 

From February to May, the mobile data traffic of Smart rose to 30 percent and PLDT’s fixed broadband data traffic increased to 20 percent, Smart said in its press release on Tuesday.

The mobile data traffic, said Smart, has doubled from last year to 1.3 exabytes in the first half of 2020 due to the “consumer demand for video, social media and mobile games.”

One exabytes is equivalent to one billion gigabytes of internet usage.

“There was also a major shift in data traffic away from the commercial business districts (CBDs) which have existing built-up network capacity to the less well-provisioned residential areas. These factors adversely impacted the speed and availability of internet services immediately after the lockdown,” network said.  

The base LTE stations were also increased by 10 percent compared to the previous year and it has also increased the capacity of LTE networks by reallocating the assigned frequency of 2G to 4G/LTE, Smart said

3,785 base stations were currently providing additional LTE network capacity, Smart said.

“Smart’s mobile network is supported by PLDT’s fiber infrastructure, which provides high-capacity links to LTE base stations and is now nearly 360,000 kilometers nationwide,” the statement reads.

50 percent of the network subscribers were currently regular data users, the network said.

“Over the past year, PLDT wireless subsidiary Smart Communications Inc. has added more data users, as its GIGA data packages continue to gain greater customer acceptance,” Smart said. Ma. Veracel A. Martinez