Goodbye, Buffering: 5G Is Finally Coming to the Philippines

Mislatel Consortium is the new major player in the local telco industry.

( We can’t blame you for getting mad when a binge-watching session on Netflix turns out to be an episode of endless buffering instead. Sometimes, even that 15-second ad on YouTube takes forever to load, making it all the more rage-inducing. Anyone would get frustrated over the Philippine’s slow, often inconsistent, yet expensive Internet connection. But good news, everyone: A new telecommunications provider will be coming to the Philippines—and they've promised to bring 5G technology to local users.

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On November 19, the National Telecommunications Commission formally confirmed Mislatel Consortium as the new major player in the telco industry, breaking the Globe and PLDT duopoly. The consortium, a joint venture between Filipino businessman Dennis Uy’s Udenna Corporation and state-owned China Telecom, has committed to providing faster and better services to the Philippines.

“We are eyeing to roll out [sic] 5G technology within two years. 5G is the future of telecommunications,” Mislatel spokesperson Adel Tamano said in a radio interview. Mislatel aims to provide Internet speeds of up to 55mbps, covering 84% of the Philippine population, and is expected to start its commercial operations within a year and a half.

The consortium is made up of Udenna Corporation, its subsidiary Chelsea Logistics Holdings Corporation, and China Telecom, the largest fixed-line service and third largest mobile telecommunication provider in China. Among the three, only China Telecom has experience in the telco industry. It holds 40% ownership, the maximum restriction for foreign ownership in the Philippines.

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