The city of Ormoc in Leyte is expecting a boost in investments and jobs, particularly from business process outsourcing companies, following improvements in internet connectivity in their area.
With a population of about 200,000, Ormoc is home to universities and colleges like the Eastern Visayas State University, Western Leyte College, and STI College Ormoc, to name a few which provide the employee base needed by BPO companies as they expand to provincial city centers in various parts of the country.
Now, that potential is being enhanced by the improved data connectivity available via fixed and mobile networks — the other vital factor for attracting BPO firms.
“Ormoc is very business-friendly. We’re expecting more investors to come in, one of them is the BPO sector. Apart from the malls and the buildings, connectivity is also very important to them, and we are thankful that PLDT and Smart have improved their services in our city,” said Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez.
Better connectivity in Ormoc
“PLDT already has existing fiber-to-the-home connections in Ormoc to address the needs of homes and enterprises in the city, and by the end of the year, we will triple their capacity to address the growing need for high-speed internet,” said Mario G. Tamayo, PLDT-Smart Senior Vice President for Network Planning and Engineering.
“We also have existing fiber-in-the-loop (FITL) and we are increasing its capacity to address the requirements of incoming BPOs as well,” said Tamayo, adding that fiber will also be rolled out to more areas across Ormoc this year, including key areas like the Ormoc District Hospital, Sabin Resort Hotel and SM Ormoc.
To improve the mobile data experience of residents in the area, Smart has also fired up Long Term Evolution (LTE) and LTE-Advanced sites around the city, as LTE and LTE-A are the best technologies to help bring fast, affordable, and reliable mobile internet services to customers.
Recent internal tests around Ormoc showed speeds ranging from 20 Mbps to 50 Mbps in areas like the Ormoc City Terminal and Public Market, Robinsons Ormoc and Sabin Hotel, among others. The Ormoc City Hall is also among the local government offices nationwide powered by carrier-grade Smart Wifi.
In a courtesy call with PLDT and Smart representatives, led by SVP and head of Consumer Business for Customer Development Alex O. Caeg, Gomez also discussed possible partnerships between the Ormoc City government and PLDT-Smart in education, sports, health and tourism programs.
“We support the Ormoc City government in improving the lives of its citizens by making PLDT and Smart services more accessible to them,” Caeg said, adding that they are also looking into tying up with the Ormoc LGU in improving its dedicated tourism app.
“We also hope that with improved connectivity and more investors coming in, our tourism and hospitality industry will also grow further,” Gomez added.
The city of Ormoc is just one of many areas where Smart has already deployed LTE and LTE-A. Recently, Smart also fired up LTE and LTE-A sites in nearby city Tacloban, in the Philippines’ northernmost province of Batanes, Puerto Princesa City in Palawan, and Sarangani, where tourists who took part in the recent SarBay Festival were also able to enjoy better connection with Smart’s newly launched LTE-A in the area and use it during the festivities.
Smart’s LTE roll-out goes hand-in-hand with PLDT’s fiber roll-out, which includes both fiber-to-the-home and hybrid fiber technologies. This modernization and expansion of PLDT’s fixed and mobile networks is supported by a massive capital expenditures program amounting to P58 billion this year.