Optus kicks off WiFi calling in Australia
Optus has become the first Australian carrier to make the jump: it's launched a WiFi calling app to let users make calls when they can't get a 3G/4G signal.
The company has launched its snappily-named WiFi Talk app, which like Skype lets users have conversations and send text messages over a handy wireless LAN connection.
Unlike an over-the-top (OTT) voice-over-internet-protocol connection, WiFi Talk calls will be billed to the user's mobile service. On the upside, you can talk to any phone number on your plan rate without buying SkypeOut credits, you can send texts to any mobile, and you can receive calls without having to buy a SkypeIn number.
To continue reading the article: click here. (theregister.co.uk)
Optus to shut down 2G network in 2017
Optus will shut down its 2G network in April 2017, the telco revealed today.
"2G now constitutes a fraction of our total mobile network traffic and is declining significantly year on year," Optus Networks acting managing director Dennis Wong said in a statement.
"Mobile service providers globally, including in Australia and our parent company Singtel in Singapore, are closing down 2G networks to support newer technologies."
Optus' 2G network runs in the 900MHz spectrum.
"No decision has been made regarding the reallocation of spectrum," an Optus spokesperson told Computerworld.
To continue reading the article: click here. (computerworld.com.au)
End Of July Update
The biggest news for the past 2 weeks is Telstra have finally woken from their slumber an have finally taken the lead in Tower upgrades for the period. Upgrading 110 sites mostly adding 4G 700mhz and/or 4G 1800Mhz to sites as well as a few 4G 2600 here and there also. Telstra also ramped up their proposals, proposing 179 tower upgrades. Telstra also added 12 new towers for this period.
Vodafone continues to plod along at its usual pace adding 12 new towers as well as upgrading 92 towers, comfortably holing 2nd place. Vodafone's focus continues to be 850Mhz with 4G being the focus in metro areas and 3G for rural areas.
Although optus added the most towers for the period or 16 new sites, their site upgrades have really slowed with 65 for the period. Optus appears to now be focusing a little more on depth, with some older 2G only towers finally getting a 3G upgrade but 4G is still nowhere in sight for those towers. Optus' 4G lead is now under threat, Telstra is only 330 towers behind an I expect that gap to close quickly and be over taken in the near future. In the 4G low band stakes Telstra is much further behind with a deficit of 1299 towers, I will be closely watching these gaps and will keep you all up to date on Telstra's progress.
NBN's pace continues to be slow only activating 13 towers for the 2 week period and adding an additional 3 proposals bringing their total to 1716 active and proposed.
Optus suffers major mobile network outage in NSW, Victoria and Tasmania
Optus suffered from a "major" network outage on Friday afternoon affecting thousands of its customers in NSW, Victoria ad Tasmania.
The outage appeared to start at about 3.30pm AEST and ended at 6.30pm AEST.
"We've identified a fault which means you might experience issues with voice at the moment, Our team are on to it, and aim to fix this as soon as possible. We're sorry for the inconvenience."
To continue reading the article: click here. (theage.com.au)
Vodafone mobile subscribers dip as Telstra and Optus turn up the heat
Vodafone Hutchison Australia chief financial officer James Marsh expects get stronger subscriber growth over coming months despite losing 47,000 mobile customers over the past six months amid rising competition from rivals, Telstra and Singtel-Optus.
Hong Kong's HTA and UK-based Vodafone Group each own 50 per cent of Vodafone Australia.
According to HTA's financial results for the six months ending June 30, 2015, Vodafone Australia had 5.255 million mobile subscribers once wholesale customers are included. This was down from the 5.3 million it had at the end of December.
By comparison, Telstra has about 16.4 million customers and Singtel-Optus has 9.43 million users.
To continue reading the article: click here. (afr.com)
Mid July Update
In the past couple weeks, the biggest news is that all 3 major carriers are rolling out at almost exactly the same pace. The numbers are so similar there really isn't a clear winner this time around, however because Optus' rate has slowed so much Telstra and Vodafone has been allowed to catch up. Vodafone had 70 site updates and 13 new sites which is consistent with recent periods. Telstra upgraded 77 sites and added 9 new sites while Optus continued with their slower pace with 76 site upgrades and surprisingly only 5 new sites.
Telstra continues to add proposals for 700Mhz upgrades, but not at any great pace that would indicate a major shift in their roll out speed.
NBN also picked up their pace slightly activating 17 towers and adding an additional 7 proposals bringing their total to 1713 active and proposed. NBN continue to switch some of their proposed 2300mhz sites to 3500mhz proposals.
NBN downplays 5G plans while 4G beats international peers
NBN's 4G fixed-wireless network has topped a comparison of 22 wireless broadband networks across the globe.
NBN's TD-LTE network is less than halfway built, despite initial plans to have the network construction completed by the end of 2015. It currently reaches 268,000 of the 600,000 premises planned to connect to the National Broadband Network (NBN) via wireless as of the end of June this year.
A total of approximately 47,000 premises are connected to the network with a service.
To continue reading the article: click here. (zdnet.com)
Our wireless is the best, says NBN
The NBN might be delivering a sub-optimal wired service now the Government has directed it to use copper rather than fibre, but it says its wireless service will be first rate.
Amid all the controversy over Malcolm Turnbull’s ‘multi-technology mix’, under which millions of NBN users will now be connected via fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) rather than fibre-to-the premises (FTTN), it is sometimes overlooked that there are also two other major technologies delivering the NBN (with about one third using existing Optus and Telstra HFC connections).
Wireless and satellite will between them account for around 8% of the NBN’s eventual 10 million connections, mostly in regional and remote Australia (see chart). NBN will be launching two satellites (these users are currently served by a slow interim services), which will offer some of the best Internet satellite connections available globally, and it is now spruiking the merits of its wireless broadband service.
To continue reading the article: click here. (itwire.com)
NBN Co to deploy 5G in the bush
The national broadband network will deploy next-generation 5G technology for internet users in rural and regional Australia, according to Liberal frontbench MP Paul Fletcher.
Mr Fletcher will make the announcement as part of a speech at the Mobile World Congress in Shanghai on Thursday, as a replacement for NBN chief executive Bill Morrow, who was unable to attend due to a death in the family.
The 5G systems are set to be commercially released by 2020 with the promise of 10 gigabit per second downloads speeds, near-zero signal lower lag times for things such as driverless cars and super-low battery consumption.
To continue reading the article: click here. (smh.com.au)
Telstra GSM switch off 2016, Nokia says 100% GSM data growth
As Telstra prepares for its GSM 2G network switch off in 18 months time, to the chagrin of many customers, Nokia separately says telcos should prepare for 100% GSM data growth.
This time last year Telstra was announcing that its 2G GSM network was going to be switched off at the end of 2016, to the chagrin and annoyance of many of its customers with 2G GSM and GPRS equipment.
Many of these users have commented at Telstra’s blog post to complain that the equipment they have comes with 2G GSM/GPRS modems which will need physical and expensive replacement with 3G/4G modems.
To continue reading the article: click here. (itwire.com)