The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) on Wednesday said Globe and Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) have a maximum of one year to "significantly" improve their internet services.
Otherwise, the NTC will revoke the co-use agreement it granted the telcos.
NTC deputy commissioner Edgardo Cabarios said, before San Miguel Corp.'s sale of telco assets to Globe and PLDT, the two telcos already requested for co-use of the 700Mhz frequency.
NTC granted the request last week on the condition that the public would feel "significant improvement" in internet speeds in a year, and that rollout plans would be submitted to the commission in 60 days.
Cabarios explained the decision is in response to the order issued by President-elect Rodrigo Duterte for telcos to improve services the soonest time possible.
He said building additional base stations would take months and years while sharing frequencies is the fastest way to go.
Cabarios expects Globe and PLDT to increase internet speed from the current 1mbps to an average of 5mbps in three to six months at no additional cost to consumers.
But he said the country's internet speed won't be at par with neighboring countries until about three to four years.
Meanwhile, Cabarios said the 20Mhz bandwidth that NTC recalled will be up for grabs within the month. He said it should be utilized by an already existing player, or a synergy among small players in the industry may be formed to become a third party.
He said an entirely new player in the industry may have a difficult time because it would require huge costs for building base stations to be able to utilize the frequency.
Despite apprehensions that San Miguel's sale of telco assets to Globe and PLDT is anti-competition, Cabarios remains optimistic that a third telco player would come in.
(C) ABS-CBN NEWS