Somchai Lertsutiwong, CEO of Advanced Info Service Plc. (AIS), commented, "In our 32nd year of providing service, we have never changed our original intentions to be a Digital Life Service Provider developing tech infrastructure for the nation. We want every sector to be confident that our networks and digital services can add value and support improved livings for the public, as well as new formats of management for the industrial sector. Over the last 31 years, over 1 trillion baht has been invested in the Thai telecom industry, divided into 523 billion baht paid to the state and 481 billion baht invested in building out networks and acquiring spectrum licenses.
"However, in the context of the new post-COVID world, in which everything is changing quickly, adapting readiness is something we continuously prepare for. We announced our transition from a Telecom Operator to a Digital Life Service Provider six years ago. Now we are upgrading to the Cognitive Telco, or a Smart Organization. We start with a focus on our three primary goals of 1. Boosting productivity and providing the greatest benefit to our customers from our current wireless business, 2. Continuing to drive business growth with home Internet and corporate customers, and 3. Investment in digital business for strong future growth. On top of this, generating sustainable growth in the future as a Cognitive Telco requires that we do not stop adding services, or adapting, applying, or combining knowledge gained from our experience as the Number 1 service provider, with access to world-class digital innovation. This has given us the capability to provide the best new kinds of experience appropriate for the New Normal to the Thai public. Just as now, we are now the first in Thailand to have upgraded our fibre optic cable network, considered to be at the heart of digital infrastructure, to a lightning-fast 2 Gbps. At the same time, we have innovated our 5G phone network in line with our commitment as a spectrum licensee, which is to always add value for the Thai public."
Meanwhile, Wasit Wattanasap, Head of Nationwide Operation and Support Department at AIS explained future directions of network development for the Thai public. "AIS was the first player to announce the launch of 5G service only a few days after receiving the spectrum license in February 2020. We now hold the most spectra covering every low, middle and high waveband, covering every conceivable use case. AIS 5G now covers the whole country, with over 90% coverage in Bangkok, 99% coverage in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) and 76% coverage nationwide. This is a benefit delivered to Thai people and the nation, while the company has not stopped innovating to upgrade the network with the latest international technology. For instance, mmWave technology provides a massive 4Gbps, while there is 5G CA, a world first, and Voice over 5G New Radio (VoNR) giving crystal clear calls on the 5G SA network for the first time in Thailand. Now we have use case experience in many other areas, whether coverage, speed, connections to IoT devices, and rates of latency, for which we are continuously focused on maintaining excellent quality.
"Of course, AIS 5G also enhances potential for the Thai industrial sector, to give it a competitive edge internationally. Recently we have been working with both government and private sector partners with the result that today, we have started to install live 5G Private Networks to provide service, which will gradually increase. As well as creating new formats of business process or assisting with digital transformation, it also gives opportunities for cost control and tax advantages to some industries."
Kitti Ngarmchatetanarom, Head of Fixed Broadband Department at AIS, noted that, "AIS' entry to the home Internet market 6 years ago was phenomenal in transforming the home internet market completely, with a focus on quality and innovation. We were the first and only operator to launch home Internet delivering a maximum speed of 1 Gbps with 100% fibre service. It was a new standard in competition to concentrate on quality and the user experience rather than price, which did not promote consumers' benefits sustainably. Innovations of AIS Fibre which we thought up first for customers include Mesh Wi-Fi Solution, Speed Toggle service and BYOD packages. Now we are extremely proud to have developed capabilities for our network to fulfill the needs of customers who now have to Work from Home, Learn from Home and Play from Home. Such needs are now supported by blistering 2Gbps speeds for the first time, delivered directly to customers' homes. The power of the Smart network, together with advance Smart CPE Lab, and Smart Service Monitoring which combine many technologies such as AI, ML and robotics to enable understanding of consumer behavior and future usage trends. As well as this, the company has teamed up with world class partners to develop the High-Speed Optical Converter (2.5 Gbps) to deliver the full 2Gbps network speed to customers' homes. We have also introduced best-in-class brand name devices in support 2 Gbps Package such as Linksys, installed for the first time in Thailand. This gives family subscribers the best high- quality experience from their package, with 2 Gbps packages starting at only 1,299 baht
"Together with new standard of service excellence within 24 Hours from the company's commitment to customers, in the matter of fast installation within 24 Hours, Fixing any problem in 24 hours and staff punctuality. AIS Fibre is the first operator in the market bold enough to guarantee all of these service commitments. It is the reason that the company has become a major player in the market with a outstanding growth rate, higher than the market from the first year. Today we have the coverage capabilities of fibre optic network covering 3.5 million households in Greater Bangkok and over 8 million households in all 77 provinces nationwide, and we are trusted by over 1.7 million subscribers. Finally, we have been able to develop service quality together with providing a superior experience for customers and the Thai people."
Somchai reiterated, "We have full belief in working to deliver sustainable benefits to every sector. The transformations which are occurring, whether at the national or international level, all provide our people with learning and the means to adapt and cope with the impacts. Our target of becoming a Cognitive Telco confirms that our know-how and experience are being combined for customers and stakeholders, to underline that choosing AIS is always the best."