End Of March Update

05 Apr 2018

Vodafone in its attempt to not be left behind reported a stunning fortnight with 44 new sites as well as 84 upgraded sites. The new sites were mostly located on the east coast with NSW receiving the bulk with 18 followed by QLD with 9. These new sites were almost exclusively focused in metro areas.  Upgrades were also focused in metro areas and consisted mostly of NB-IOT 900Mhz but 4G850, 4G1800 and 4G2100 were also in the mix. This gets Vodafone off to a good start to the year deploying more new towers than both Telstra and even Optus year to date.

Telstra managed 15 new sites as well as 46 site upgrades. New sites were a mix of rural and metro areas with a few remote small cell sites deployed also. Upgrades were mostly focused on the east coast with 4G2600 being the main focus most likely to handle congestion, but some 4G700 is still being deployed.

Optus is off to a slower start for the year compared with their stunning deployment rates of last year.  This fortnight Optus managed 14 new sites and 55 site upgrades. Over Easter this writer was camping in an extremely marginal area (15km+ to towers and in dense trees) with Telstra 3G coverage although present, completely unusable. Optus on the other hand with a brand-new tower in the area gave me 0-1 bars and was very usable although did drop out at peak times, at other times however 20mb/s down and 3mb/s up was achievable and WiFi calling worked like a charm. This has been a consistent theme this writer has been experiencing of late, Optus is fast becoming a great option for rural areas.

TPG appears to be ramping up also with another 40 proposals 13 around Sydney’s CBD, and 27 located both north and south of Melbourne’s CBD.

NBN also activated 15 new sites around the country, with 2 site upgrades, and 6 new site proposals also reported.

The low band 700mhz 4G gap between Optus and Telstra has decreased by 31 sites as Telstra finally appears to be making headway into Optus' lead. Optus is still ahead of Telstra in 4G700 by 850 sites.

Vodafone predicts mobile substitution pain for NBN Co

12 Apr 2018

Up to 40 percent of fixed line users could switch.

Vodafone Australia has unveiled a study that claims 39 percent of Australian fixed broadband users could switch to mobile in future, a substitution rate well above NBN Co's expectations.

The study, by the Centre for International Economics (CIE), was revealed by Vodafone’s chief strategy officer Dan Lloyd at the CommsDay Summit yesterday.

“There is a cohort of 39 percent of fixed line users that are still using only up to 50 gigabytes [of data quota] per month,” Lloyd said.

“That is the cohort which can already be served by 4G mobile networks at a very similar price point to fixed networks.

To continue reading the article: click here. (itnews.com.au)

New mobile tower for Wantabadgery

11 Apr 2018

AFTER lobbying for more than a decade landholders at Wantabadgery will receive a mobile phone tower.

The lack of service in the region has been a bane of farmers, emergency service workers and local residents.

“It’s a matter of life and death … we have had 45 accidents in this region since 1981,” said farmer and Rural Fire Service group captain for Junee, Tony Clough.

In the past six months there has been three road accident fatalities.

Mr Clough acknowledged that radio communication was used but in a modern age he said phone service was essential.

To continue reading the article: click here. (dailyadvertiser.com.au)

Grose Vale to receive new tower to fix mobile black spots

11 Apr 2018

TELSTRA has been awarded a contract to build a new mobile phone tower at Grose Vale, which is meant to fix the area’s mobile black spot program.

The federal government awarded the contract to Telstra as part of its Mobile Black Spot Program.

Grose Vale was one of the locations listed on the government’s priority list.  The federal government announced the locations on its priority list on April 5.

The program has also seen a number of towers either built or proposed to be built across the Hawkesbury.

In round one, Telstra was awarded contracts to build new towers at Colo Heights, Kurrajong, Mount Tomah, Webbs Creek, Sackville North as well as a small cell tower at Lower Portland

The tower at Sackville North was recently completed. Webbs Creek has not been completed, and is scheduled to go on air sometime this year.

To continue reading the article: click here. (hawkesburygazette.com.au)

Mayor defends application for data tower in teenage daughter's name

11 Apr 2018

The mayor of a Perth council says he didn’t realise his decision to submit a development application proposal under the name of his teenage daughter could “come across as deceptive” to ratepayers.

Eyebrows were raised when City of Gosnells Lord Mayor Glenn Dewhurst was questioned at a council meeting last month after it was revealed a development application for a telecommunications tower on the family’s property had his 14-year-old daughter listed as the applicant.

A local resident brought the matter before council during question time, and said: “I understand the applicant is a 14-year-old-child and that this was known to the council. Did the council determine whether or not the child was competent to make the application?”

To continue reading the article: click here. (watoday.com.au)

Paterson MP Meryl Swanson welcomes announcement that Optus will build Fullerton Cove mobile phone repeater under blackspot program

11 Apr 2018

Optus has been named as the winning bidder to build a mobile phone tower at Fullerton Cove.

The community was named as one of 125 priority locations in Round 3 of the Mobile Black Spot Program in May 2017 when the federal government invited tenders.

Paterson MP Meryl Swanson welcomed confirmation that Optus would satisfy the needs of the community.

“In this era it is reasonable to expect that most Australians should be able to stay connected to internet and telephone services,” Ms Swanson said.

“Fullerton Cove is home to a large population of retirees, many of whom consider their lack of mobile phone reception to be a safety issue. There are also young families in the area.”

Ms Swanson said it was also important for road users.

To continue reading the article: click here. (portstephensexaminer.com.au)

Government welcomes new regional Optus mobile sites

11 Apr 2018

Optus has secured funding from the Australian Government to build 12 new mobile sites across New South Wales, Queensland and Tasmania.

The funding is a part of the Government’s Mobile Black Spot Programme, an initiative that seeks to deliver mobile coverage and connectivity to regional communities.

The project will cost $7.8 million in total to build. $5.5 million of this is Federal funding, while the other $2.3 million comes from Optus.

Optus vice president of Regulatory and Public Affairs, Andrew Sheridan says enabling mobile coverage in regional Australia is a key priority for Optus and the company is proud to be working with the Federal Government to make it happen.

“In the last 12 months, we have delivered more than 350 new sites across regional Australia, with ambitious plans for the next 12 months already in place.”

To continue reading the article: click here. (itbrief.com.au)

The mobile price war is here

11 Apr 2018

The Australian mobile market is about to undergo its biggest shakeout in years and, rather than wait for change to be thrust upon them, mobile incumbents are acting pre-emptively to ward off a new and unexpected foe.

TPG Telecom is about to enter the mobile market and the price war has already begun.

Prices in the mobile telecoms market have fallen even as data and call inclusions have ballooned. The impact was clear following the recent round of results.

Telstra reported lower average revenue per user (ARPU) for the first time in years and, although customer growth was healthy, more data inclusions have meant losing hundreds of millions in revenue earned from fees for exceeding data caps.

To continue reading the article: click here. (intelligentinvestor.com.au)

TPG could displace Optus, Vodafone within five years

10 Apr 2018

Bevan Slattery's annual industry prediction.

TPG could be Australia's number two telco in five years and number one within a decade, entrepreneur Bevan Slattery has predicted.

Speaking at the CommsDay Summit in Sydney, Slattery also predicted TPG's share price would rise from around $5.50 today to above $10 within five years.

TPG is spending $2 billion to become Australia's fourth mobile network operator. It plans to have its first equipment deployed across several metropolitan areas by mid this year.

“I think their vision is so clear it is possible they could be the number one telco in 10 years, as remarkable as that may seem,” he said.

Slattery predicted that TPG would mimic elements of the strategy used by Indian mobile operator Jio, which went from zero to 130 million subscribers in just over a year.

To continue reading the article: click here. (itnews.com.au)

NBN Co to run 5G tests in Melbourne

10 Apr 2018

Future fixed wireless enhancement?

NBN Co is set to conduct its own 5G tests with networking vendor Ericsson in part of its prime 3.5GHz spectrum holdings.

Chief technology officer Ray Owen said the company would “use these tests to find out more about the technology and how it can help us deliver better services to our fixed wireless end users across Australia”.

“We know that 5G will enable much faster speeds than 4G but at nbn we also know better than anyone about how much data end users are consuming and some of the challenges on putting that data capacity onto fixed wireless network,” Owen said.

“Today, NBN Co is operating in excess of 2500 fixed wireless (macro sites) across Australia providing LTE fixed wireless access to 225,000 end users across the country.

To continue reading the article: click here. (itnews.com.au)

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