MANILA — The number of SIM cards sold decreased after registration became mandatory, the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) said on Tuesday.
DICT Secretary Ivan John Uy said the situation could be attributed to the slowdown of scammers who use SIMs because they "could not do it anymore."
"Since nag-announce tayo nito, bumagsak ho ang bentahan nila ng SIM cards dahil dati itong mga scammers, itong mga sindikato bili nang bili ng SIM card, tapon, SIM card, tapon," Uy told Palace reporters.
"Ngayon alam nila na hindi na nila magagawa iyon so bumagsak ngayon iyong bentahan ng SIM cards which we actually anticipated that will happen," he added.
The DICT chief said that fewer SIMs will be sold after the mandatory registration "because there will be no more demand."
"Most likely karamihan siguro ng mga SIM cards ay ibinibenta sa airports dahil sa mga travelers, foreigners that will be coming in that will buy their SIM cards but in terms of the local population the sales will be very, very small once this happens."
Uy added that telco firms already knew that the SIM registration law will have an impact on their sales. He also advised these companies to just use up their inventory, noting that "they may not lose a lot" in terms of revenue.
"It's a business planning side. Sa tingin ko hindi naman malaki ang malulugi sa kanila dahil kung magaling sa planning, alam nila na itong batas, kung lalabas, babagsak ang demand," said the DICT chief.
"I am sure they already anticipated na kung mapipirma yan, if they are doing proper business planning, alam nila na... significantly decrease. So if I were them, I will not order new SIM cards from manufacturers," he said.
More than 22 million SIMs have already been registered as of Jan. 18, the DICT earlier said.
The DICT chief said the "biggest issue" right now is reaching far-flung areas for registration, prompting them to launch a SIM registration caravan.
The first caravan was launched in Ifugao last week, he said.
These are the following areas the DICT will go to for the SIM registration caravan:
- Jan. 25 - Ilocos Norte, Cebu, Leyte, Bukidnon, Davao del Sur.
- Jan. 26 - Cagayan, Region 2, Region 3, Region 4-A, Region 9
- Jan. 27 - Region 4-B, Region 5, Region 6, Region 7, Region 13
For those who have not registered their SIMs, the following are the only official online channels:
- SMART - smart.com.ph/simreg or simreg.smart.com.ph
- GLOBE - new.globe.com.ph/simreg
- DITO - https://digital.dito.ph/pto/download/app
For complaints, users can reach hotline 1326.