Business

PLDT, ICTSI team up for 5G technology in ports

PLDT, ICTSI team up for 5G technology in ports

MANILA, Philippines — Integrated telecommunications company PLDT Inc. and ports giant International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI) have teamed up to explore ways on digitalizing port operations with 5G.

“We have actually closed one big deal with ICTSI in terms of 5G case study on ports and how they can use 5G technology in the ports,” PLDT Inc. and Smart Communications Inc. president and chief executive officer Alfredo Panlilio said.

ICTSI’s global portfolio consists of 34 terminals in 20 countries.

In the country, the publicly listed company of tycoon Enrique Razon operates 11 terminals, including its flagship Manila International Container Terminal at the Port of Manila.

ICTSI last year signed on to connect its terminals globally to TradeLens, an industry platform supported by blockchain technology that is jointly developed by IBM and Maersk, in a move to enhance service and operations.

PLDT and its wireless arm Smart, for their part, have been ramping up 5G investments, with the new technology expected to not only provide faster speeds to consumers, but also seen positively impacting many sectors, including transportation and logistics.

Smart has fired up 5G in over 4,000 sites across the country to date.

“We’re investing in 5G. There are a lot of use cases that are not yet developed in 5G. 5G, from a consumer point of view, will offer more speed, more video, e-learning, even teleconsulting mobile will happen, but I think there will be bigger application in enterprise,” Panlilio said.

“We really expanded our capability to serve our customers, to serve the requirements of not only consumers, but also big businesses,” he said.

Smart, which first began exploring 5G in 2016, has recently fired up the first batch of its 5G standalone (SA) sites in the country.

5G SA technology is expected to pave the way for a variety of new industry applications that utilize 5G’s full features.

With the 5G SA in place, Smart said it could soon offer Voice over New Radio and network slicing capabilities, as well as support new industrial and enterprise opportunities.