Smart Communications, Inc. has recently announced it will offer its LTE Service on a new frequency 850MHz, making its LTE service available in three frequencies. Smart’s LTE network now runs on 2100, 1800, and 850MHz.
The announcement comes just a week after the telco bolstered its Band 1 (2100MHz) LTE service with the addition of Band 3 (1800Mhz).
Smart will be using its 850MHz spectrum to make LTE available on Band 5, according to Rolando Peña, PLDT-Smart Technology Group Head.
The availability of more frequencies will enable more LTE devices to run on the Smart network. So far, only LTE dongles are available as LTE-ready mobile devices like the new iPhone 5 have yet to arrive.
This is consistent with Smart’s multi-band strategy for delivery of mobile voice and data services, which the telco has been deploying ever since it started offering GSM services.
“The opening of Band 5 gives our LTE network unmatched coverage and capacity. This is all part of our efforts to continue providing our customers the highest quality wireless experience,” said Peña.
Peña explained that the 850MHz frequency — which has wider radial reach — provides the umbrella “coverage layer” to Smart’s LTE network. It also provides better indoor signals and complements the LTE 2100MHz and 1800MHz frequencies.
“By making these three bands available, this deployment ensures that the Smart network has superior coverage and capacity, and the flexibility and resiliency to serve the needs of subscribers. More importantly, the consumer enjoys the best mobile broadband experience,” added Peña.
Smart’s multi-band LTE coverage will also benefit tourists in the country using handsets and other devices from abroad.
Smart officially began offering its LTE service in the country on August 25. Its initial offering, Smart LTE Plan 3500, comes with a free a multi-band LTE dongle, and can be used on an unlimited basis until October 25, 2012.
Dubbed the fastest wireless technology in the world today, LTE is capable of download speeds of over 100Mbps—several times faster than present-day 3G and HSPA+ standards.
Smart is one of the first in the world to offer commercial LTE, joining the ranks of Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Australia and Singapore, and the only one to use the 850MHz, 1800MHz, and 2100MHz frequencies.