(PNA photo by Robert Alfiler)

MANILA – The first two days of the mandatory SIM card registration saw over 3 million successfully registered across all three telecommunications firms.

Citing initial reports submitted to them by the telecom firms, National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) Deputy Commissioner Jon Paulo Salvahan said in a Laging Handa briefing Thursday, as of Dec. 28, DITO reported over 530,424 registered subscribers, Smart with 1,019,207 and Globe with 1,913,266.

Salvahan said the agency is closely monitoring the rollout of the SIM card registration, which began on Dec. 27, through a task force that will coordinate and report concerns of the telcos and subscribers, among others. 

The telcos are required to submit a daily report to the NTC for seven days from the start of the rollout, Salvahan said.

READ: Server issues mar SIM card sign-up portals on 1st day 

Subscribers have 180 days to register their SIM cards.

Salvahan is optimistic that the target 160-180 million active SIM cards will be registered within the prescribed period.

"Based on initial data, when we combine the numbers that is already 3.1 or 3.2 million subscribers as of the second day. Based on the rate of the registration, which will improve in the later days, magiging sapat ang 180 days (the 180 days are enough). Kung sakaling 'di aabot, nasa provision ng batas na pwede palawigin for another 120 more days (If not met, under the law it can be extended for 120 more days)," he said.

Several glitches had been observed on the first day of registration, including "slowdown" or "shutdown" of the system as reported by the telecom firms due to the heavy volume of registration traffic.

READ: DICT launches 24/7 complaint center

To address this, the telecom firms increased their systems' capacity so that more subscribers can register.

"Na-observe naman po natin na sa unang dalawang araw ng SIM registration, malaki ang naging improvement, malaki ang jump ng registration numbers on the second day at inaasahan na lumawig pa (We have observed on the first two days of the SIM registration that there has been a big improvement, there was a jump in the registration numbers on the second day and we expect this to increase)," Salvahan said.

He urged subscribers not to wait for the deadline and register early.

"Kung makaka-rehistro ng mas maaga, mas mainam para maaga natin ma-acheive ang purpose ng batas na ito (If you can register early, the better so that we can achieve the purpose of this law)," he said. (PNA)