Youâ€™d have to have been living under some kind of rock not to have noticed that the local telco wars have been heating up as of late. The jostling for the hearts and minds of subscribers of course remains constant, but thanks to the latest goings-on â€“ the upgrades left and right, the service slowdowns and outages, the barbs, gibes and accusations flying thick and fast â€“ you might be forgiven for mistaking the local telecom scene for some sort of telenovela (albeit a business-themed one–telecomnovela?– but we digress).
A few days ago, Globe Telecom Chief Technical Adviser Robert Tan, Corporate Communications Head Yoly Crisanto and other key folks invited us and a number of other people to a presentation and discussion over dinner, with the aim of disproving many of the nastier rumors and updating everyone regarding the status of their ongoing â€śnetwork transformation.â€ť
To start off, Mr Tan and Ms Crisanto took pains to emphasize that what Globe was undergoing was indeed worthy of being called a â€śnetwork transformationâ€ť and was not just a mere upgrade. The need for such a transformation is undeniable; the soaring popularity of â€śalways connectedâ€ť devices such as smartphones and tablets is placing immense pressure on those components carried over from the old system, which was after all designed to deal with nothing more complicated than calls and text and multimedia messages. Moreover, the number of such users is only going to increase over the years, many of who will be toting more than one of these devices â€“ making it imperative to craft a solution that will also stand an excellent chance of being able to answer future needs.
Mr Tan and Ms Crisanto said that in response to this, Globe isn’t just swapping out old equipment and upgrading the existing network, but is constructing a brand-spanking-new network, encompassing core elements and transmission and access equipment â€“ in short, a complete replacement of the old one â€“ to revolutionize service delivery and stave off problems such as dropped calls, late message arrival and so on. Said system is to be fully protected against a wide range of emergencies that might interrupt service, from flooding to earthquakes, and will of course incorporate state-of-the-art modern technology, including renewable or â€śgreenâ€ť technology.
Howâ€™s the transformation progressing so far? According to Globe, plenty of targets have been achieved to date, and more are nearly in the bag:
They added that the companyâ€™s network transformation program was about halfway completed and that it would all be done â€śby the first quarter of 2013,â€ť and that customers would really be able to â€śfeel the differenceâ€ť when it gets fired up.
However, Globe would be remiss if it were to ignore the fact that other facets of its operations did not also need improvement. Indeed, and for example, as many pointed out during the post-presentation discussion, customer service, including the ability of service personnel to deal with issues adroitly, has been something of a sore point for many users. Mr Tan and Ms Crisanto, along with the Globe engineers who were also present, hastened to reassure everyone that these matters were receiving attention as well. For instance, they said, a more powerful and comprehensive IT system that will enable customer service personnel to more rapidly deal with customer concerns is currently in the works, and is no less than part and parcel of this sweeping upgrade.
We came away cautiously optimistic â€“ the devil, as they say, is always in the details. Letâ€™s wait and see how everything shapes up.
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