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Internet in The Philippines

I can’t imagine to live in the Philippines without the Internet. Luckily, Internet access via DSL is available on most islands in the Philippines, may it be over the good old Telephone Land line, direct cable or wireless over the mobile towers.
If you stay on a very remote island however, you may experience some speed problems, in fact you will have to test which provider (Globe or SMART) serves you best.
You may also have access to the Internet by a satellite dish but the cost for that is about 15,000 Peso a month.

 

If it comes to prices, this are the packages currently available at Globe Telecom (2013):

  • P 799,- Landline & Internet 1 Mbps (3 GB/month)
  • P 1099,- telephone & Internet, 1 Mbps via land line (Preimium Broadband)
  • P 1299,- telephone & Internet, 2 Mbps via land line (Premium Broadband)
  • there are other rates available

Mobile Internet (You can Use your smartphone with a Globe SIM Card as a Hotspot):

  • P 50,- “Supersurf” good for 1 day
  • P 200,- “Supersurf” good for 5 days
  • P 999,- “Supersurf” good for 30 days (To be actvated by SMS) other rates for 1 or 5 days are available.

Globes competitor SMART offers wireless services only:

  • SMART Bro: P 1245,- for an USB Stick Modem with Sim Card. Inclusive 120 hrs Internet for the first 5 days. After that it’s P 20 per hour or P 50 per day (apply day by day per SMS). The Speed is mentioned with up to 1 Mbps but it’s much slower most of the time, depending on signal strength.
    I am trying Smart Bro right now in March 2011 and the maximum download speed is about 48 kbps, even with a full 5 bars signal strength.
  • Further offers are available at SMART with a fixed modem/router with speeds from 512kbps up to 2Mbps and unlimited access to the internet. Monthly costs starts at P 999,- for the packages.

User interface with Smart Bro in the Philippines
This is the user interface with SMART Bro: Maximum download speed is about 48 Kbps on a lucky day. See the signal strength (upper left) and the receive Rate at the lower right of the picture.

You should also know that:

  • if you order a telephone land line only, the monthly charges are 500,- Peso already.
  • If you want to use SKYPE, your DSL speed should be al t least 512 kbps (1 Mbps is better)
  • The DSL signal is available most of the time. Over the last few years, the service improvement was significant, at least here on Bohol Island.

If you want to rent a house or a flat in the Philippines and you are depending on an Internet connection, ask at the local provider about what is available in that area. But be carefully: Even if land line and DSL is available in general, it does not mean that they will also have an free access point available at that particular place.

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