SM Megamall launches its Prism of Lights, a sound and light show at the Time sculpture which can be seen from the mall’s outdoor dining area and terrace and along EDSA on December 17, 2021. The 15-minute show will run from December 17 to 20 starting at 7 pm with 20-minute intervals until 9 pm. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

MANILA — An internet traffic surge is expected from last Friday, Dec. 17, until Jan. 7 next year as Filipinos are encouraged to celebrate the holidays online anew amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Telecommunications Commission said.

The NTC on Friday advised telecommunication firms and internet service providers to be prepared with their capacities.

“During the period from 17 December 2021 to 07 January 2022, please observe a heightened level of emergency preparedness to ensure minimal disruption and downtime strictly complying with the prescribed service performance standards at all times,” NTC commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba said in a memorandum.

“You are hereby directed to fast track your maintenance efforts, increase internet/broadband capacities and ensure that business continuity and disaster recovery protocols are in place and functioning 24/7.”

The Department of Health earlier encouraged Filipinos to conduct gatherings online despite the recent decline of COVID-19 cases in the country.

The Philippines on Saturday logged 291 more COVID-19 cases, data from the DOH showed, raising the country’s total to 2,847,555.

Of the overall case count, 9,924 are active. The positivity rate stood at 0.9 percent, the DOH said.


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