PLDT and Smart Communications leading innovation of Video services to home and mobile subscribers
Smart Communications has strengthened its leadership in postpaid in 2015, buoyed by a surge in demand for relevant content, Smart Communications app-based services enable subscribers to fully experience the mobile digital lifestyle. Smart communications featured in our Digital Telco series (here) for their Digital Lifestyle focus.
Highlights include partnerships between Smart Communications and OTTs such as Iflix and Fox International, Uber, Zalora, Footpanda and AirBNB. The result was 9% increase in revenues of postpaid and 192K growth in postpaid subscribers rising to 3 MN at the end of 2015.
Now Smart Communications is pushing to increase the postpaid segment with converged services. Innovative data sharing offers enable PLDT fixed line subscribers to share data quotas with Smart Communications postpaid subscribers, and, also allow Smart Communications postpaid and prepaid subscribers to share their data quotas with other Smart subscribers.
Smart Communications EVP and Consumer Business Group head Ariel P. Fermin said; “The combined strengths of our fixed-line and cellular businesses give us flexibility and capability to bring converged offers to the market, allowing our subscribers to make the most out of their mobile devices and embrace the Smart Life.”
PLDT and Smart Communications launched the country’s first-ever data plan that enables subscribers to a home DSL service to share their data allocation with mobile phones of their family in January 2016.
This is how it works;
- DSL Speedster Fam Plan 1299 combined with a Smart mobile plan 399 or 600 allows sharing of 6GB of the 50 GB monthly data allocation with their mobile phone lines. Customers may get up to 4 Smart mobile phone lines bundled with their Speedster Fam Plan all conveniently billed under one subscription. (Getting ready for connected homes – we believe…)
- Shared Plan 999, provides three smartphones and three mobile numbers under a single account, that are capable of sharing 6GB of mobile data volume per month. The plan also comes with unlimited calling among the three users.
- Big Bytes Barkada for prepaid customers allows users to share their data allowance with others by ‘passing’ it 50MB chunks. Barkada 99 offers 700MB of data, valid for seven days, while Barkada 299 offers 2GB of data, valid for 30 days.
So what are PLDT and Smart Communications customers supposed to do with those large data allowances? Watch the widest range of video services running on broadband through the most flexible and convenient means said Fermin.
PLDT and Smart offer video content at various time intervals from date of original release — from linear viewing, to catch-up TV, TVOD (transaction video on demand), and SVOD (subscription video on demand)— and now, through VR (virtual reality) devices.
“We are doing this because people are increasingly turning to video when they go online. Video is driving consumer engagement and boosting mobile data usage,” Fermin added.
Since last year, PLDT has launched a series of video services on both its fixed and mobile networks.
- It started with the country’s first IPTV (Internet Protocol television) service, with Cignal TV content on both Fibr and DSL services.
- It also launched a the Viewstream Android app, Smart also offers catch-up’ viewing of top Fox channels like Fox Sports, National Geographic, Fox News, among others.
- Smart also offers Blink, a TVOD , an option where customers can access their choice of movies or TV shows on a per title basis.
- PLDT then introduced SVOD service iFlix – now Southeast Asia’s leading Internet TV service with over a million subscribers in the Philippines alone — on both its fixed and mobile networks.
Video services are available on postpaid and prepaid mobile services in 30-day subscription periods. Smart subscribers can instantly watch iFlix on their smartphone without having to sign up or sign in. iFlix users also enjoy the convenience of offline viewing – they can download movies and series episodes to their handsets and keep them for up to seven days, and have the freedom to watch these offline, wherever they are and whenever they have time, for up to three days.
As a result of these initiatives, PLDT’s mobile data traffic has soared. PLDT’s mobile data revenues have also jumped by 12.7%!
“Last year, we saw mobile data traffic in our network more than double, to close to about 100,000 terabytes by the end of 2015, and we know that a large share of that traffic was video,” said Fermin.
The cherry on the cake was the last announcement from Smart that it will offer Samsung’s newest smartphones – Galaxy S7 and S7 edge –with the VR. The state-of-the-art virtual reality headset that enables 3D and computer graphics animated worlds, complete with 180 or 360-degree live action scenes.