MANILA, March 21, 2004 (STAR) By Mary Ann Ll. Reyes - GlobeQUEST has launched Cebu City as an international data gateway, a significant move towards the transformation of the southern Philippine city as a hub for information and communications technology (ICT) services.

Dubbed as Cebu-to-the-World or C2W, the project was GlobeQUEST’s response to the government’s initiative to promote Cebu as an e-Services destination in the country.

GlobeQUEST is the corporate business group of Innove Communications Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Globe Telecom.

Gil B. Genio, Innove chief executive officer, pointed out that for the first time, Cebu City will lessen its dependency on Manila infrastructure for its international private leased line (IPL) and Internet requirements.

An IPL connects a local company to any foreign location via fiber optic lines for speedy delivery of data. Traditionally, Cebu-based customers have to go through Metro Manila gateway facilities before getting connected to international cable facilities in Nasugbu, Batangas.

This time, GlobeQUEST has established an STM-4 fiber that can carry up to 622 megabit per second (Mbps) of data to link the newly-established Cebu gateway and Nasugbu submarine cable landing station so that customers in the area can directly connect to major countries such as US, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea, China and Taiwan.

"This will result in better network performance, faster provisioning and same rates on services as if they are located in Metro Manila," Genio noted.

Cebu, the second largest city in the Philippines with a population of 3.5 million, is currently being positioned to become the country’s ICT hub outside Metro Manila – having the only IT Park outside Luzon (Asia Town), being a favorite location for call center expansion (with eight existing and eight potential call centers), and having 30 Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and five telecom providers.

The province is the business, educational, medical, transport and tourism center in the Visayas and Mindanao, and boasts of having more than 200 foreign direct investors (FDIs), 13 of which are engaged in the IT business.

Jesus C. Romero, GlobeQUEST head, meanwhile, announced that they have equipped each gateway in Metro Manila and Cebu with Broadband Access Service (BAX).

BAX uses the Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM), a technology by which the frequencies of light carried on a single pair of optical fiber are subdivided into discrete wavelengths allowing for the greater transmission of data.

GlobeQUEST BAX uses ultra-high speed fiber optic that extends from the gateway directly to the customer office locations.

This fiber optic network can carry a staggering total capacity of 80 Gigabit per second (Gbps) which translates to roughly one million simultaneous voice calls and is equivalent to downloading 80,000 books per second. In video terms, 80 Gbps can broadcast about 13,000 TV channels at the same time.

GlobeQUEST has identified a number of buildings in Metro Manila and Cebu in which a node is placed directly inside the customer premises. The node is a distribution point that allows GlobeQUEST to extend a line vertically from the basement of the selected building to the offices of interested tenants.

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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