One of the fundamental characteristics of any modern developed economy is near-universal financial inclusion, where all citizens have access to a formal financial system. More than ever, banking services depend on internet connectivity to support modern digital solutions.
Although the number of Filipinos with access to financial accounts has grown rapidly in recent years, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas found that 44% of the adult population still did not have a financial account in 2021. This represents just over 34 million people who do not have a formal account to save and collect interest; send or receive remittances, income and benefits; and make day-to-day payments.
Satellite broadband can improve financial inclusion
With over 7,000,000 jungle-covered islands and mountains, the Philippines is a beautiful nation. It is also a difficult country to connect with traditional telecommunications technology.
Fiber optic cables are expensive and difficult to lay in such small communities. Another challenge: the monsoon season. Each year, this natural event damages the cables and the structures of the pylons, cutting off the communities. Satellite broadband is the fastest and most cost-effective way to distribute bandwidth to rural and other underserved areas.
Using satellite technology, Kacific has been able to provide a reliable, high-speed and affordable alternative to fiber optic connection for rural and remote areas. The first Ka-band broadband satellite, Kacific1, was launched in 2019 as a geostationary satellite. Kacific has concentrated spot beams that cover all remote areas – from Batanes to Palawan and even as far as Sulu. These spot beams are high power, resulting in availability of between 99.5% and 99.9%.
Kacific’s Ka-band technology provides higher output in small 1.2m antennas or terminal kits, making it quick and easy to install. It also means higher upload and download speeds which can provide better internet performance.
Additionally, Kacific can mitigate the effects of rain fade with diverse uplink availability, having two local teleports located in Subic Bay and Clark as backup sites to ensure connectivity remains available even in inclement weather. .
Satellite connectivity has proven itself in terms of data security, a vital need in the financial sector. Since connecting rural areas is key to improving financial inclusion, both government and the private sector can play a role.
In partnership with Kacific, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) can provide last-mile connectivity solutions to banks and treasury agents as well as local communities so they can access digital finance.
TBGI, a local Kacific ISP, offers unlimited plans starting at ₱5,940 in the Philippines. Terminals are offered for a one-time terminal fee of ₱34,000 or ₱52,000 depending on plan size. A one-time installation fee of ₱10,000 is charged by distributors to install the terminal kit in a specific area.
Secure banking services for businesses
The Philippines is prone to natural disasters. This can massively disrupt communications by cutting telephone lines and cell towers and damaging fiber optic infrastructure. But with satellite broadband access, communities can stay connected to banking and other essential services.
Kacific Enterprise Backup protects the business against regular terrestrial and mobile broadband connectivity interruptions. Any financial institution can easily install Kacific’s satellite as a hot backup site in the event of a fiber outage or cable failure, for a small fee. Acting as an insurance plan for primary connectivity, the backup solution ensures that the bank will be fully operational 100% of the time. ATM withdrawals and point-of-sale systems need to be available at least 99% of the time, especially during disaster scenarios, where preserving continuity becomes the top priority.
Satellite internet increases the reach of financial services
Kiram Irilis is the superintendent of the school division of the DepEd division of Sulu. Their office uses satellite internet primarily to allow Land Bank ATMs to communicate through a host computer en route to the bank’s nearest data center for the financial transaction to be processed. The ATM is located inside the DepEd Compound in Jolo, Sulu.
“Before installing TBGI’s Internet powered by Kacific for our ATM, we have to go to the nearest Land Bank ATM, 8 kilometers from our office, just to withdraw our salary. Moreover, said machine is frequently in offline operating mode. Now, we no longer experience offline mode when using the ATM, nor do we need to take long walks just to withdraw cash, and we are relieved from the long queue , especially during payday.
Better internet connectivity and greater financial inclusion
In March 2021, former Philippine President Duterte signed Executive Order EO127, allowing more entities to provide satellite broadband services to remote communities, with the specific goal of boosting financial inclusion. This is intended to work alongside the rollout of the country’s new national ID system, and it has already seen more than 5000000 unbanked Filipinos open transaction accounts with the Land Bank only.
Meanwhile, President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. noted in his first State of the Nation Address on July 27 the government’s efforts to increase digital connectivity in the Philippines. Part of the plan is to connect the country’s Geographically Isolated and Deprived Areas (GIDA) through its ‘Broad band of Masa’ project.
For isolated communities, satellite broadband bridges the gap and allows fintech to thrive. With government and the private sector working together, it is possible to connect rural customers and small island economies.
To find out more about reliable, affordable and high-speed satellite internet, contact TBGI on 0917 583 7971 or learn more at www.tbgi.net.ph.
Apply to become a Kacific Authorized Distributor today, visit https://kacific.com/distributor-network find out more.
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