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Essays on tech by J. Angelo Racoma

PLDT Landline Plus Prepaid: Initial Thoughts

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The _in_ thing in the Philippine telco market today is the wireless landline service. It’s somehow a mix of mobile phone service and landline service: the focus is on voice calls, but the service is usually not limited within a home or office.

There are various reasons why the Philippines is called the texting capital of the world. For one, text messaging is cheaper than voice calls (at least in the country). Secondly, Filipinos are known not to be a bit on the shy side when it comes to communicating. So we would rather text than call because the impersonal nature of texting serves as a veil between the communicants–one doesn’t have to worry about emotions or reactions. And for the forgetful ones like myself, I like keeping info (or agreements!) in my SMS inbox, so I won’t forget.

The recent upsurge of “wireless landline” services, however, goes to show that telcos are tapping that unused capacity of their networks in bringing about a new service–something I would call a “hybrid” one, but something that others may consider bordering on marketing gimmick.

Until recently, wireless landline services had to be exclusively subscribed-to, and required exclusive handsets. Some networks even use systems that are not same as the most widely used standard here, which is GSM. Bayantel, for one, uses CDMA. And until recently, using wireless landline services meant using a full-sized telephone apparatus, complete with the wired handset and the base with antenna. Portable, true. But one might look silly walking around at the mall speaking into what looks like a wired landline phone (at least that was what I thought when the service first came out a year ago).

But then the candybar-type handsets came to be popular, also. These were as portable as your usual mobile phone, but without the limitation of per-minute charged calls.

And for about a year after wireless landline services were introduced, these were usually postpaid plans with unlimited outgoing calls and SMS messages. But now the trend is going towards prepaid.

Hands on with PLDT’s wireless landline service

So I’ve wanted one for the longest time. My wife preferred the large apparatus type unit (if ever we were to go for one). But we didn’t feel the need for it yet. So it was way below our to-do / to-acquire list. But I got an offer from fellow blogger Jepoy, who was giving out prepaid PLDT Landline Plus SIM cards.

What was really great about the PLDT service was that it was no longer limited to specialized handsets. One could acquire a PLDT Landline Plus Prepaid SIM card, plug it into any GSM phone (Smart locked or unlocked), and voila! You have service!

I got my SIM card in the mail this afternoon (after much anticipation through the weekend) and tried it out. Here are some photos and my initial thoughts.

PLDT Wireless landline SIMPLDT Wireless landline SIM

* The service functions much like a regular prepaid GSM subscription, albeit a basic one. There’s caller ID, but there are not much bells and whisltes (like wireless Internet, call waiting, call forwarding, etc.)
* Voice quality is good–I would expect this of the Smart network. It does have an echo sometimes, though.
* Coverage is good so far. I would expect this of Smart, too.
* Interconnectivity is good, so far. From my Bayantel landline at home, I could connect 100% of the time. Other reviewers, though, say that interconnectivity is iffy at about 75%.

I tried the SIM on my LG KU250 (the one stolen and recovered). And for one to use a “wireless landline” SIM on such a phone would be overkill, as Max Limpag would say. The data connectivity features of the phone would just be put to waste. So later this week I’m off to get myself a cheapo basic phone (much like what I use as my main phone).

I had no problems activating the SIM from my home office. Jepoy says you need to be in an area where the Smart cell site is already upgraded to handle PLDT wireless landline activation. No problem on my end, though.

PLDT Wireless landline SIMPLDT Wireless landline SIM

Jepoy posts a comparison between two of the more popular prepaid wireless landline services here. I’m a loyal Bayantel user, so I initially wanted to get a Bayantel wireless landline phone. But then I would have to purchase a new handset altogether (which is incompatible with the rest of the country’s networks), and a dedicated SIM. The advantage, though, is that Bayantel has per-call charging, while PLDT’s is per-minute. But that’s for outgoing calls. Knowing how ingenious we can be at penny pinching, many users would probably just use the outgoing calls to ask the other end to call back.

Then again, as earlier mentioned, the telcos may have just found a really smart way to extend the use of their existing networks by marketing the service as a “wireless landline” service, when they could, in fact, just introduce cellular plans that are more focused on cheap voice calls rather than text.

I’ll be road testing this service soon, so watch out for more insights.

Author: J. Angelo Racoma

J. Angelo Racoma is a technology and automotive journalist and blogger. See more of his work at e27. Follow him via Twitter at @jangelo.

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32 Comments

  1. Pingback: tonyocruz.com » Prepaid wireless landline service starting at P100

  2. I am here in cebu my landline is globelines.
    Problem i can’t call my pldt landline plus prepaid if i will not use my NDD.
    if i use pldt land line NO PROBLEM.

  3. ok naman ang PLDT Landline prepaid sa bahay namin. at least mas matipid.

  4. I just got a PLDT Landline Plus SIM. Area code 02 (Manila).

    QUESTIONS:

    1. Will this work out of town, say Tagaytay or Cebu?

    2. If someone from Manila calls me when I’m out of town (assuming the answer to number 1 is yes), will that person be charged NDD rate or is it considered a local call cince my SIM has the 02 area code?

  5. good afternoon Sir!
    i have loaded my PLDT Pre-paid sim but i cant enjoy the service of incoming & out going text messaging.
    what seems to be the problem?
    please advise.
    thank you.

  6. Hi Dong,

    Have you activated a monthly subscription?

  7. JAR,

    I just bought a 02 code PLDT Landline PLUS prepaid sim in Muntinlupa boundary San Pedro, Laguna. Until now I still cannot activate it. How can we contact their customer service landline hotline using any landline since the sim-based CS number 101328 is not reachable with un-activated sim.

    Maybe you can help.

  8. Where can I buy this sim?

    Thanks

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  10. im from malapascua island part of cebu.i like to have enternet connection.were can i connect the enternet.and can you pls tell me whats the best enternet connection of this island?

    thanks.

  11. for internet connection..call 171 to inquire for dsl

  12. I would like to canceled my landline the # 3291108 ok thank you very much..

  13. ask ko lng.. about pldt prepaid landline plus, nala register ako sa 300 monthly plan.. if hindi ko na consume ang 300 load kasi yung 150 mins free call lng ang nagamit ko..still needed to reload monthly of 300? what will happen to the unused 300 load?

  14. thanks, hope to hear from you soon.

  15. yung 300 load, once used to register for the monthly plan, is already consumed. in return. pldt give you 150 mins call time. so if you loaded 300 and registered it for a monthly plan, you will have 0 balance but are able to call for 150 mins.for the following month, you will have to load and register 300 pesos again to be able to call

  16. if i have this pldt sim, can pldt landline users in the provincial area call me? is the charging local (manila) or NDD? Thanks!

  17. kasama ba phone yan? o ppwede sim card lang? how much if simcard lang & with phone? thaks

  18. can i research a persons number through pldt landline plus?..

  19. what if i have a plan of P300.00 /month, then, i consumed it just in 15 days, so, what happened to my plan? i can’t to make an outgoing call? or, ca n i received incoming calls?

  20. I had my PLDT Landline plus prepaid sim activated. The problem is I cannot make a call to Bayantel network. I already reported the same to PLDT Customer Service, pero ganun pa rin. What seems to be the problem? please help me.. thanks.

  21. Plan 300 has an equivalent of 150 mins of local calls. So if you have consumed all the 150 minutes in less than a month, you can still receive calls for the remaining days. You can load as low as P30 eload to make outgoing calls at P2/min.

    Contact me YM bobtube if you want to buy (Until July 2009 only.)

  22. PLDT land line plus with unli call is zero per minute call everytime you use it for outgoing and incoming calls. Its zero charge for outgoing with same area code( with that promo you cannot make ndd calls anyway). Incoming has no charges with you and the caller (except for those caller calling you outside your area code, the caller will be charged the NDD rates or the international rate incase they are calling outside the philippines

  23. BTW. PLDT land line plus (the second line promo) which charges your landline bill additional 250 per month

  24. really, if i start with the Plan 300 i always have to load 300 every month? not like the regular prepaid cellphone load na you can opt to use 300 or 30 or 50, etc?

    hindi ba talaga pwede for pldt LL na PHP 300 for the 1st month then 100 every month na lang? ..huhu..

    thanks! :D

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  26. my mother used to have the pldt landline plus postpaid.we have it cancelled out and we just realized it is way a lot better that the one we had it replaced with. can we still reactivate the cancelled landline?

  27. If i lost the simcard or stolen by someone is there a chance to deactivate the sim? What should i do?

  28. For me ok naman ang service nila. Malinaw ang signal at most importantly malakas at malawak ang coverage. Kahit nasa basement ako ng office ko sa Makati or even sa loob ng mall sa Divisoria, natatawagan ako.

    Mabilis lang approval nila, dito ako nag sign-up:

    http://pldtservice.sulit.com.ph/

  29. How to register at plan 300? nawala kasi yung insert manual ng pldt landline sim ko eh… Salamat po.

  30. Paano po mababago ang area code. Kasi ang code po ay 02. Gagawin ko po ay 054 kasi nasa bicol po ako ngayon.

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