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Far EasTone’s 5G penetration rate to reach 30%, it says

Post Date 2021.07.03From:Taipei Times

Far EasTone Telecommunications Co (遠傳電信) is on track to reach a 5G penetration rate of 30 percent by the end of this year after about 800,000 people upgraded to its ultra-high-speed mobile service within a year of its launch, the company said on Thursday.

Use of 5G services has been picking up rapidly since they debuted last summer, with Internet traffic growing 18 percent since then, Far EasTone said.

That did not factor in the effects of the COVID-19 situation, it said.

As people are restricted from going out, they have tended to switch to Wi-Fi or optical fiber broadband to access the Internet for remote working or online education at home.

With Apple Inc’s expected launch of new iPhones, probably in the fourth quarter, Far EasTone is confident that 5G subscriptions will accelerate, it said in a statement.

To cope with rising Internet traffic, it is enhancing its 5G network coverage and density, the firm said.

It is to boost its 5G network coverage to 90 percent of Taiwan’s population by the end of this year from 75 percent currently, Far EasTone president Ching Chee (井琪) said in the statement.

The company has deployed 7,000 5G base stations so far, the statement said.

It said that 5G subscriptions have helped boost revenue and profit more than expected, as more than 90 percent of its 5G users sign up for packages with a minimum monthly fee of at least NT$999.

Moreover, people have opted for 20 percent higher tariffs when renewing contracts, Far EasTone said.

These factors helped drive higher average revenue per user, it said.

A survey released last month by Ericsson AB showed that Taiwan had 2 million 5G subscribers as of May, 11 months after local telecoms debuted such services.

That was a penetration rate of about 10 percent, indicating that uptake in Taiwan was faster than in countries that rolled out 5G services earlier, the survey said.