TSTT Board approves $3.7 billion, 5-year strategic plan

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Above: A TSTT technician at work. Photo courtesy TSTT.

TSTT’s transformation from the traditional legacy telecommunications company of the 20th century into an agile broadband communications organization has begun.  The company’s Board of Directors approved a 5-year strategic plan, including capital expenditure of TT$3.7 billion, to make this goal a reality.

A significant proportion of the capital expenditure is for the transformation of TSTT’s technology infrastructure. TSTT is building an end-to-end IP-based network with easily scalable high bandwidth which will make it an agile broadband company.

The new network utilises components and software that can be programmed to perform any variety of functions and can quickly deliver a wider variety of services to customers. This will allow the Company to promptly respond to changes in customer needs, competitive factors, and important global and local industry trends.

According to TSTT CEO Dr. Ronald Walcott, “Customers will feel justly proud of a national communications provider that is the fuel for economic growth and a better quality of life.”

The evolution and upgrading of its technology is taking place from the ground up with a new Mega IP-core network which is scalable to 10 times its current capacity.  At the same time, the wireless network will support the country’s fastest mobile and fixed wireless data speeds with almost ubiquitous indoor and outdoor coverage throughout Trinidad and Tobago. 

Additionally, an augmented Fibre-Centric Residential Solution is being built to reach over 200,000 homes. This greater coverage of customers is to be complemented by a five-fold increase in international bandwidth capacity for secure, reliable, global connectivity.

These developments will allow TSTT to deliver virtually any configuration of communications services to customers, from faster Internet and more HD quality TV content to fully supporting Internet of Things (IoT) integration for smart homes and connected living.   

Equally important for the Company is the improvement in the customer-service experience that must accompany these technology and product improvements.  The Retail transformation programme aims to change TSTT’s customer service in-store, online, through call centers or other distribution networks. 

The Company is investing in a full-stack converged service support solution in partnership with an international leader in the provision of network and billing solutions.  This application suite is being customized to ultimately allow TSTT to improve its speed to market, the promptness and efficiency of its customer interactions, and allow an ‘all-in-one’ bill to customers.

Further, to sustain its responsiveness to customers’ needs, TSTT has implemented a Net Promoter Score system so as to get reliable customer feedback on its service quality, allowing it to readily identify service areas that are most important to customers and improve these accordingly.

Work on TSTT’s Mobile Long-term Strategy is already registering significant improvements in network capacity and coverage. By optimizing its available spectrum, TSTT sees further improvements on the way for customers’ data speeds and in-building coverage.

Other work on the infrastructure providing Landline, Broadband and IPTV (subscription TV) has delivered very positive results. Broadband customers in scores of areas with modern GPON (gigabit passive optical network) systems are able to get up to 25 Mbps of speed and enjoy the higher quality of the IPTV (Blink TV) offerings. This is the precursor to what will be possible with the larger fibre roll out program.

“In line with its 56-year tradition of service, TSTT is exclusively committed to the long term interests of country and citizens alike and to ensuring predominantly local repatriation of the profitable proceeds,” said Walcott.