The Philippines’ second largest cellular operator Globe Telecom says it plans to launch a commercial 3G service in the second quarter of 2006, having introduced the technology to select corporate clients in January. In the initial phase the cellco will offer the new high speed mobile services free of charge in selected cities, on a promotional basis, with free video calls when made to other Globe subscribers. The duration of the promotion will depend on market response.
Globe Telecom plans to deploy between 700 and 1,000 3G-ready cellsites over the next twelve months, primarily in the capital Manila, other major cities and provincial centres. The company is spending between USD90 million and USD100 million to launch 3G commercially and says future investment will depend on take-up.