Undoubtably, between Smart Communications and Globe Telecom, the former has a fair lead in the deployment of LTE technology. The problem is, they do not have a clear LTE policy yet. If you got a new Apple iPhone 5 last year, you had free LTE until April 30, 2013. The LTE "promo" has been extended to June 30, 2013.
If you are planning to get one of those nice new LTE handsets, like a Samsung Galaxy S 4 or Sony Xperia Z, you also get LTE connectivity till June 30, 2013, after which time what Smart does next is not clear.
|Notice the fine print "Until June 30, 2013"|
In the case of Globe Telecom its regular data plans are also LTE plans.
Basically, if you are like me, you are a Smart Subscriber about to renew his contract, it is pretty confusing at Smart right now. It feels like Smart is not sure what it wants to do with its LTE plans, and unfortunately they are leaving their customers uncertain of whether they will have to spend more in the future to maintain LTE connectivity. The uncertainty about plan pricing, minor data billing issues plus changes in retention policy makes Globe Telecom suddenly look a lot more inviting.
If you want to be sure that you get a Smart plan with LTE, without having to pay more in the future, you can avail of the Sony Xperia V or ZTE T82 which come with LTE Plans. The Apple iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S 4 and Sony Xpreria Z come with 3G Unli Data Plan with free LTE until June 30, 2013.
When the promo ends, it looks like you will have to pay Php1,000 over and above your current plan to maintain LTE connectivity.