Philippine telco PLDT Inc (PLDT) has piloted a common virtualized network infrastructure for its network and IT applications, as part of the company’s continuous network transformation program to improve customer experience.
A first in the Philippines, PLDT and its wireless unit Smart Communication Inc. (Smart)’s Network Function Virtualization Infrastructure (NFVI) will house PLDT and Smart’s network elements, boosting operational efficiencies and reducing capital and operating costs.
“Our network virtualization initiatives help enhance the delivery of many of our services by ensuring seamless interoperability across our nationwide network infrastructure,” said Mario Tamayo, head of Technology at PLDT and Smart. “An example would be our Edge data centers. As services demand lower latency, the physical distance between our customers and our network and the content they access, becomes more important. As such, we have begun deploying Edge data centers to bring our services closer to our customers and provide them with better experience. Network virtualization ensures better performance and offers greater scalability and flexibility in managing the network.”
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This initial rollout is expected to improve the quality of the Smart WiFi service in select areas in Metro Manila and Cebu and provide a better experience to its users. This common infrastructure is also being deployed in ePLDT Vitro sites in Makati and Parañaque, and will also support sites across the country, bringing PLDT’s services closer to more customers outside of Metro Manila.
Virtualization enables PLDT and Smart to provision capacity faster, addressing data usage growth and preventing congestion on the network. Having a common virtualized infrastructure also enhances PLDT’s business continuity and disaster recovery response, as well as minimizes service downtime.
Because of these operational efficiencies, NFVI also enables PLDT to be more responsive to customer needs.