Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Optus Australia Tests LTE 2100 MHz, Acquires Licences

SingTel's Optus division has tested LTE operating in 2100 MHz spectrum using equipment from Nokia Siemens Networks.

The field testing, which occurred in Sydney, Australia, used pre-commercial LTE USB dongles over 10 MHz of spectrum. The test achieved peak download speeds of over 50 Mbps and upload speeds of 20 Mbps. The companies also noted that the LTE trials, conducted in metropolitan Sydney, showed significantly reduced network latency, improved connectivity and enhanced mobile streaming capabilities when compared to 3G. Lab tests reached speeds of up to 73Mbps over 10 MHz of spectrum.

The LTE trials were part of Optus ongoing commitment to Australian consumers and businesses to deliver a stable, reliable and robust mobile network service to improve the user experience.

Separately, Optus announced that it is the first mobile network operator to successfully acquire new regional spectrum licences in a combination of 10 MHz and 5 MHz of paired spectrum in the 2100MHz band at almost 1000 sites across regional Australia. This includes Bendigo in Victoria; Bundaberg, Hervey Bay and Townsville in Queensland; Tamworth, Wagga Wagga and Port Macquarie in New South Wales.

The spectrum acquisition in regional areas complements Optus' recent acquisition from Qualcomm of an additional 10 MHz paired spectrum in the 2100 MHz band in all eight capital cities.

"The release of this regional spectrum, in advance of expected new spectrum allocations in the 700MHz and 2.5GHz bands in the coming years, will help us to continue to transform the playing field in the regional communications market. As well as strengthening Optus' position to challenge the incumbent by improving capacity and coverage in previously under-serviced areas," stated Andrew Buay, Managing Director, Optus Products and Delivery.

  • In the twelve months up to 31 March 2010, the number of Optus 3G services increased by almost 40 per cent from 2.58 million to 3.61 million, inclusive of Optus mobile broadband customers which increased more than 86 per cent to 907,000.