Wireless phone service for individuals without mobile phones?

Smart Communications, Inc. has launched a new wireless telephone service under its lower-end Talk ‘N Text brand, aiming for people who do not own cellular phones.

The “Barangay Phone” service will allow subscribers to load mobile phone prepaid credits for as low as P3.00 for a three-minute call, the mobile unit of Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) said in a statement.

“Individuals who need to use any Talk ‘N Text Barangay Phone anywhere in the country just need to buy the micro ‘bucket’ load at denominations of P3.00 for a three-minute call, P6.00 for a six-minute call, or P12.00 for a 12-minute call to any number within Smart’s network of over 42 million subscribers nationwide,” the company said.

The wireless phones, worth P3,000 each, will be distributed through sari-sari stores and “high-traffic” locations such as public markets or transportation terminals, as well as market vendors.

“The Talk ‘N Text Barangay Phone may be used by individuals who need to make a call either to a landline or a mobile number, but don’t have their own personal cellphones,” the company said.

Smart Communications chief wireless advisor Orlando B. Vea said the firm was expecting to boost the “value-based” proportion of the brand, which now counts over 17 million subscribers.

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