Wireless broadband service provider Neptuno will invest $15 million to develop an islandwide next-generation 5G network, to offer services to both small businesses and individuals over the next three years, company President Pedro Andrés said Thursday.
“We’re proud to be one of the local companies that’s growing and investing in the island despite the economic contraction we’re experiencing,” Andrés said.
“For the past 17 years we have developed a solid operation, which has served the private sector and the government. The changes we are incorporating raise our potential to meet much of the needs of organizations with advanced technology,” Andrés said.
Through the proposed 5G network, clients will be able to access internet speeds up to 100 times faster than current available. Neptuno owns 100 percent of the 28 GHz spectrum available on the island.
“Our industry is one of the most competitive in Puerto Rico. Everybody in the industry is actively investing in infrastructure. The $15 million is a projection for what we expect to develop, but we’re not stopping there,” he said.
The executive said Neptuno’s planned 5G infrastructure is on par with networks being deployed across the U.S. mainland by telecom giants Verizon and AT&T.
“We tend to underestimate ourselves here in Puerto Rico, thinking there’s always someone from the outside who does it better. But we’re doing it the same or better than any of the big companies,” Andrés said.
Since its establishment in 2000, Neptuno has been working behind the scenes, offering its high-speed broadband network infrastructure to other carriers and service providers. Now, the company wants to make a full entrance into the market with its own name.
“We have a new vision, for new times. This stage strengthens our leadership position in the Caribbean region, but for us at Neptuno there’s no greater satisfaction than being an example of the level of quality that can be offered from Puerto Rico,” Andrés said.
One of its target niches are small and mid-sized businesses that perhaps are subscribed to a service designed more for residential purposes, and does not offer all of the capacity they may need, he said.
In preparation for the deployment, Neptuno is already testing its 5G technology throughout the San Juan metropolitan area, with the expectation to start offering services within the next 12 to 18 weeks, he said.
The company plans to blanket the island with its ultra-fast service by deploying wireless technology to reach “even the most remote areas,” Andrés said.
Neptuno employs about 85 people and could create as many jobs in coming months as it installs its infrastructure.
Although the immediate target is the small business sector, Neptuno is also working on offering a residential service before year’s end.
“The product is called NCasa, and details will be available next week, when we upload a new website. We expect to offer competitive prices,” he said.