Globe backs call for mandatory IP peering

by Lorenz S. Marasigan, BusinessMirror

Posted at Jun 02 2014 09:08 AM | Updated as of Jun 02 2014 05:08 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Globe Telecom Inc. said on Sunday it supports the telco regulator’s position on the mandatory Internet protocol (IP) peering among carries to improve Internet services in the country.

The telecommunications provider, however, maintains that there should not be any excess charge to maintain or even lower Internet surfing costs.

“A mandatory IP peering among major Internet service providers [ISPs] in the country would greatly improve Internet speeds. The absence of an effective and applicable IP peering agreement among major telecommunications providers in the Philippines has been huge deterrent in further advancing Internet development in the country,” Globe General Counsel Vicente Froilan M. Castelo said.

He added that it is high time that the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) addresses this issue squarely amid mounting calls of Filipino consumers for faster Internet speeds. At a recent joint hearing of the Senate committees on trade and public services, the NTC cited the lack of IP peering among local ISPs as one of factors that contribute to slower Internet speeds in the country.

The regulatory body pointed out that in the case of Singapore and South Korea where Internet content are mostly generated internally, as a result of an effective IP peering policy.

IP peering allows one ISP to connect with another provider, giving both entities a direct route for fast exchange of information.

“Establishing a direct connection among ISPs would greatly improve throughput and latency performance of ISPs and enhance bandwidth utilization. This will enable ISPs like Globe Telecom to provide faster Internet speeds for their respective customers,” Castelo added.

Around 15 percent to 23 percent of all Internet traffic in the Philippines is domestic, said Castelo. This means that domestic traffic originates in the Philippines and terminates in the Philippines. However, instead of remaining local, up to 70 percent of this local traffic is being routed externally, such as in Hong Kong and the US, before returning to the Philippines. This means that instead of getting routed directly between origin and destination, data is routed outward through large ISPs that sell transit before data is routed back to its target destination, this causes delays in data transmission and effectively slows Internet connectivity.

Castelo emphasized that the absence of applicable IP peering agreement among major ISPs in the Philippines makes the country dependent on international cables, which poses a threat to the overall Internet connectivity in the country in times of disaster. The lack of an applicable domestic IP peering policy also entails huge operating costs for ISPs like Globe.