In response to the Department of Information and Communications Technology’s (DICT) call to ensure Internet stability in the Philippines during the Covid-19 public health emergency, Facebook Philippines will temporarily reduce bit rates for videos on Facebook and Instagram in the Philippines.

The measure is expected to address network congestion and free up bandwidth allocation that may be used for other vital online services.

Facebook added that they are working closely with mobile operators in the Philippines to manage any bandwidth constraints during the crisis.

DICT Secretary Gregorio B. Honasan II said the imposition of Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) is causing a significant surge in the usage of digital services and streaming platforms which strains the country’s Internet infrastructure. He expressed his appreciation for the online streaming platforms that have heeded the Department’s call to help ease data congestion.

“Along with food, water, and medicine, connectivity is vital for the people right now. With the participation of our private sector, we hope to maintain and improve the Filipino’s Internet connectivity during this crisis,” Honasan said. 

Online streaming platforms Netflix, Google, iFlix and iWant have taken similar measures as requested by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC). The DICT, with the guidance of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) and along with its attached agencies, aim to provide enhanced Internet experience to the public during the Covid-19 public health emergency.