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SMART LTE Launch Plan: PHP 3500 for 10GB per month; comes with USB dongle at 42mbps

The cat is out of the bag (also, I apologize for the many updates with SMART). Though not officially announced by SMART Communications, the pricing for the highly anticipated LTE was leaked yesterday in some blogs. I was able to confirm the pricing scheme as well with people from SMART and it seems that the strategic leak worked quite well to their advantage — SMART was on Engadget earlier today.

Again, LTE stands for Long Term Evolution which marks the true beginning of the next generation of mobile Internet for everyone. If 3G brought about mobile apps usage like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, it is exciting to see what LTE can bring about.

The August 25 launch (everyone is invited!) will announce the current pricing scheme:

– LTE will debut in the Philippines at PHP 3,500.00 per month
– it will already come with a LTE USB dongle for free; early last year we confirmed the price of the USB dongle was somewhere in the PHP 10,000 range so yeah, you’re saving ten grand by subscribing
– the USB dongle will be capable of speeds up to 42mbps; this is the same (if not similar) dongle I used during the beta test period. Note that 42mbps is the maximum capability of the dongle but the network can handle, technically up to 100mbps. That’s 100 megabits per second. To know the difference between megabits and megabytes, read my primer.
– the initial offering caps data at 10GB per month.


To be honest I was actually surprised with the sub 4k price point of LTE. Pundits were expecting SMART to launch the service in the PHP 5,000.00 area or thereabouts and this can only mean that with a relatively low price point for LTE, it can only get more affordable from here (either by increasing bandwidth or by making it even cheaper or by offering new handsets once they arrive). The Philippines is one of the first countries in Asia to have this sort of Internet and it’s exciting to see what the next 6 months will be like.