Globe’s capital expenditure program, focused mainly on data expansion, has equipped its network to handle the surge in demand for digital services. The company is future-proofing its systems as customers are expected to make more use of streaming and other data-intensive products in the coming years.
A 2022 Global Media Outlook Report by UK-based international research data and analytics group YouGov found that even in a post-pandemic scenario, video streaming services are “likely to register the biggest growth in consumption this year with a Growth Driver score of 36%.”
“In the coming year, as “work from home” routines and entertainment habits linger, on-demand streaming services and social media platforms are set to continue to keep consumers hooked,” the report added.
In anticipation of the market’s changing behaviors and needs, Globe allocated the bulk of its unprecedented P92.8 billion capital expenditure program last year for data network upgrades. The company had earlier forecast that the surge in data demand brought about by the pandemic would not slow down even as quarantine restrictions are lifted.
Globe’s accelerated expansion included the construction of more than 1,400 new cell sites in 2021, the upgrade of over 22,000 mobile sites, and the rollout of 1.4 million fiber-to-the-home lines over the past year. To add to these, the company fired up more than 2,000 5G outdoor sites and in-building solutions.
“Our efforts are focused on continuously upgrading our network, and ensuring that we constantly improve customer experience despite the growing demand,” said Globe President and CEO Ernest Cu.
“Even with lifestyle shifts that have seen customers rely on data for almost all of their everyday functions due to the pandemic, our network upgrades have been up to the task as shown by higher average speeds and consistency scores,” Cu added.
According to Ookla®’s Q4 2021 data, Globe registered a 51% improvement on download speeds and 24% on upload speeds versus its Q1 2021 performance.
Globe’s consistency score also steadily grew last year, demonstrating significant increases from 70.43 in Q1 2021 to 79.02 in Q4 2021, at par with global benchmarks.
On Speed Score™, Globe had a noteworthy boost from 22.95 in Q1 2021 to 32.67 in Q4 2021. Globe has successfully exhibited regular improvements on both consistency and Speed Scores ™ quarter-on-quarter.
Globe also recently won the Best 5G Video Experience Award in the Philippines from Ookla®. The video awards were launched by the global network intelligence and connectivity insights firm early this year, based on local mobile networks’ performance in the third and fourth quarters of 2021.
“Increase in the use of data will be a given, even as the pandemic wanes. This drives us to continue to invest in our network, and to leverage as well on the diversity of our services in order to help customers live a fuller life,” said Cu.
The company has committed P89 billion in capital expenditures this year to continue its aggressive site builds, upgrade of sites to 4G/LTE, speeding up its 5G rollout, and faster fiberization across the country.