No, the data has not been updated since July 2018. OzTowers has requested access to allow this data to be updated from RFNSA, however nothing yet has come of those discussions. If you value the service OzTowers was providing you then please get in contact with RFNSA and let them know what you think.
This data is obtained from the Australian Mobile telecommunications Associations public website RFNSA Under fair use. This site is designed to provide the community details into the industry that have been until now mostly inaccessible to the average user. The data collected is provided "as is" although OzTowers makes every effort to maintain its accuracy, OzTowers is only as accurate as the data collected. Blackspot Data is obtained from the communications.gov.au website and is available in csv format for download.
Yes, I know, it’s more designed for WiFi and 5G. However, it does give you a quick overview of how RF would travel in the local area, so it’s still useful. If you know a better tool that covers 3G and 4G also then let me know. Also note: One piece of data OzTowers is missing is the tower height, you’re going to need to take a guess at that or pull that data from AMCA's radcom data set.
Yes, you can find information on who to contact by searching for your specific tower here on OzTowers, then by selecting the "Rfnsa Link" button you will be taken to the Rfnsa site. Once there you can now hit the “Consultation” tab where you may find the relevant contact details. OzTowers has no further information to give.
In the statistics tab sites are consolidated down to a single site. So while the sites are counted individually for a single provider if a site has more than one provider that site is consolidated down to a single site when counted in the "All" or "Total" columns.
Ok, thats great, but there are over 15,000 active towers nation wide and I cannot personally keep track of all of them. The whole point of OzTowers is you can access the data and keep track of them yourself.
This data may never have been intended for public use and should only be used as a guide. Anything that was recently activated may not yet be available to the general public and may still be in a testing phase. It does however give you a good indication of what should be available in the very near future. For specific questions on towers, please contact your local representative for the respective provider.
The mobile industry is fast moving and more proposals tend to be made than what's actually going to become active. For example, as technology moves on like from 3G to 4G, the focus will shift and most proposals involving only 3G services will likely be left behind. However as 4G gets to the end of its roll out focus will shift again and some of these older proposals may well get picked up again. For specific questions on towers, please contact your local representative for the respective provider. Sometimes you can find information on who to contact by searching for your specific tower here on OzTowers, then by selecting the "Rfnsa Link" button you will be taken to the Rfnsa site. Once there you can now hit the “Consultation” tab where you may find the relevant contact details. OzTowers has no further information to give.
Seriously? That's what your concerned about? ME ME ME ME ME ME, MY HOUSE PRICE! What are we? 5yo? Grow up! Spare a thought for those who can't even make a call in some areas. If you were concerned about your health then I would be a little more sympathetic!
Yes, but only if you have a license from the carrier you are attempting to boost coverage for. When you purchase a repeater from a local dealer, they will submit the paperwork for the license on your behalf. The device they provide also allows that provider access to the device to modify the settings if interference becomes an issue in the area. They are a little more expensive than the ones you find on ebay however you also won't need to worry about the $200k+ fine if your caught running one without the necessary licensing descried above. You can find more information about legal repeaters here and are available for all 3 Australian mobile networks.
Although you can now get 4G repeaters, 4G is radically different from 3G in one key way. Rather than being a phone network with data bolted on the side, 4G is a data network with a phone network running on top. This is what we call VoLTE or Voice over 4G which works very much like your web phones that use VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol. Not only do recent phones such as the Iphone 6 and newer have VoLTE but many also have VoWifi capability also. Both Telstra and Optus now support VoWifi, and Telstra has also demonstrated a call originating on LTE transitioning to WiFi and then back to LTE without the call dropping out. What this all means is with the newer technologies like VoLTE and VoWifi, and you have a supported handset, any WiFi router can now become a phone repeater, no license or expensive kit required. If you have a house with a basement where calls always dropout, with a strategically placed WiFi router, you can now be on a call, walk down to the basement and back and not drop your call. For people in rural, remote or under serviced areas your home WiFi can become your local mobile tower.
Unfortunately OzTowers does not have any more information on specific towers other than what is available on the site. If you really need more information then please contact your local representative for the provider you are seeking information for. Your local Telstra, Vodafone or Optus shop may be able to point you in the direction of your local representative. Sometimes you can find information on who to contact by searching for your specific tower here on OzTowers, then by selecting the "Rfnsa Link" button you will be taken to the Rfnsa site. Once there you can now hit the “Consultation” tab where you may find the relevant contact details. OzTowers has no further information to give.
You can find a comprehensive guide on antennas here as well as a guide on locating your nearby towers here. While places like ebay may have antennas at cheaper prices, don't get sucked in by scams. For general community help you can find great forum discussion here.
Although you can use this site to look for changes to mobile towers in your local area that may have caused TV reception issues, Please Note that there is no additional information OzTowers can offer other than the information available on the site. Complaints about TV reception related issues should be forwarded to AMCA, more information can be found here.
The 2G switch off is now complete for all Australian providers nationwide. The only exception is for Telstra services operating on Christmas Island.
Telstra 2G Network shutdown – 1st December 2016 – Completed.
Optus 2G Network Shutdown – April 3rd 2017 for WA & NT, 1 August 2017 all other states – Completed.
Vodafone 2G Network Shutdown – 30th April 2018 – Completed.
Unfortunately there is no correlation between Rfnsa numbers and Cell ID. Each tower has multiple Cell ID 's as there are usually 3 (or more) cells on each tower, and there can also be multiple providers all with their own Cell ID's.
Crowd sourcing it in the future could be possible but that has same challenges as the only information you have to link it to a tower is your current location which is not all that accurate when you have multiple tower around.
This is in the to hard basket for now, but if anyone knows of a reliable database out there that I could tie in then let me know.
Yes, google has one they collected with their street view cars, but you have to pay for it.
Your crystal ball is probably as good as mine. If nothing is proposed and there are no blackspot towers in your area then its probably not going to happen any time soon. You should contact your local MP and or create a local community action group to help lobby during a future round of blackspot funding. Also having an Independent MP or being in a marginal seat also seems to help for some reason.
Generally speaking mobile providers will contact you if you have a spot that is conducive to installing a tower.
Depending on the population density around its likely tower locations are not main issue preventing the installation of a tower, more likely it's not economically viable to install such a tower without some government funding via a program like the mobile blackspot program.
The truth is, like you, all those houses around you already have mobile phones, and more likely Telstra Mobile phones. So what incentive are you giving to Telstra to build a tower in your area? You are already paying your Telstra tax, and Tower or not Telstra is still collecting that money. Sadly it's actually more economical for Telstra not to install your tower as they will likely not add too many new customers once its built, and it also only adds to the cost of their network. Yes, I'm saying that you are contributing to your own problem.
I recommend you contact your local member of parliament for both federal and state to see what they are doing in your area with regards to funding and if your area is suitable for a tower under the mobile blackspot program.
If you have an Iphone then basically your out of luck. Although there is a built in app called Field Test Mode its quite limited and not very user friendly. Apple does not allow apps to access raw cell data, however these limitations can be overcome by jail-breaking your phone which not something Apple or OzTowers can recommend.
Android does allow access to cell data so you have apps available that are quite user friendly and useful. I'm not an Android user so I cannot suggest any specific apps.
First of all, you should always put the address of any property your considering purchasing into the NBN website to see if or when NBN is available and more importantly what type of NBN the property has available to it. You may also want to spend a small amount of money and have a professional survey done for any property your considering buying.
If you have a choice between a property that has fix wireless vs one that only has satellite then I would recommend avoiding satellite, going forward these properties may become increasingly undesirable and property values are already being influenced by the type of NBN connection available. Plan costs are much higher on satellite and large data plans are not available, not to mention latency which makes general web surfing feel sluggish and frustrating. If you have a business to run on top of all of that then well, good luck with that!
If you must choose a property with only NBN satellite as an option you may still have a few options. Is the property within 13km of a NBN tower? if so then it may be possible to build a shed somewhere on the property that has good line of sight to the tower. You will need to provide 240v power (solar inverter is a possibility) and a way to send data back to where it’s needed (WiFi link or even underground cable). Alternatively, people are also building tall towers, however this is tricky and will require a lot of planning as OHS will require you to provide safety equipment such as a scissor lift to allow the NBN contractor access to the top of the tower, also the NBN contractor will need to have the required training. Also note that if something goes wrong down the track, you may need to bring in the equipment again at your expense.
If your property is outside the 13km radius of a tower then as far as NBN is concerned satellite is all you will be getting. Almost everyone who has requested a technology switch from NBN has borked at the cost and going from satellite to anything else is the costliest of all. So you will likely be stuck with Satellite, unless a future government wants to spend more money to shift more people from Satellite to Fixed Wireless. While that may well happen as the satellite is loaded up and performance drops to near Interim Satellite levels, even if that happens is your area a good target for this? That depends on how many neighbour’s you have around you and the topography of the area. If you’re in the middle of nowhere with no one around you then no you will be stuck with satellite.
So, your stuck with satellite as far as NBN is concerned, what other options are there? First, I would look for either the closest Vodafone (yeah, I know right) or Optus tower. Optus and Vodafone generally provide better data rates than Telstra so they are worth investigating. Most likely you may find an Optus 4G tower with 700Mhz, 700Mhz has been tested up to 100km away but it still comes down to good line of sight, good equipment and finding a tower with not too much congestion. Ideally you would want to target a higher band, 4G 1800Mhz would be the perfect band to target as your setup can still fall back to 700Mhz if required. 1800Mhz will not travel as far as 700mhz and is more prone to loss though things like trees, but if you can get a 1800Mhz, 2100Mhz or 2600mhz signal at all then thats a good sign and what you end up with may be more reliable than just relying on a single band. Also, If Optus goes down there is probably a Telstra signal not too far away, so it might be good to have your mobile on Telstra and your home Internet on Optus for added piece of mind. If both those services are coming from a single tower however then you may still want to consider NBN Satellite as an alternative. Optus does have some sites that have Satellite backhaul, these sites have little advantage over NBN Satellite other than being an alternative network in the event of NBN going down. These can be identified by having a 3G only signal in remote places.
No Optus or Vodafone? Well now your options are really becoming limited. So, it’s down to Telstra, and likely Telstra 3G, if that’s all that’s available you probably still want to consider NBN Satellite as a backup at the very least. Telstra data rates are not so great (although unlimited data is now an option), but general web surfing on 3G will still be much faster than Satellite, although Satellite will work fine with applications like Netflix, provided you have the data plan for it. If you can get Telstra 4G700 then great you can likely fall back to 3G850, but again it all comes down to line of sight, your equipment and congestion in your area and that can change all the time. If Telstra goes off line then you may be stuck with nothing, so I would highly recommend NBN Satellite as a backup.
The best way to get to the bottom of this is simply to run speed tests throughout the day. In most cases congestion will be predictable and happen at known times such as when the kiddies around your neighborhood get home from skool or perhaps later in the evening when mum and dad turn on netflix at 7pm and watch a moofie. So the best test is to compare speeds from around 4pm through to 9pm to speeds at other times during the day like at 6am or even 2am. If your getting 30mb/s at 6am and you try the exact same test again at 7pm and receive something like 5mb/s then its a good chance congestion is at play here. Just make sure noting else is happening when you run your tests, isolate all other devices or just ask everyone to stop what they are doing for 1min when you run your tests.
NBN typically has 3 sectors per site with around 60 premises per sector, or a maximum of 330 premises per site.
NBN also has up to 8 sites with wireless backhaul before using fibre to bring the data back to the local POI. Originally 900Mbps was used for wireless links but this is currently being upgraded to 4Gbps. A maximum of 2640 premises can be assigned to this group of sites.
Lets do a little math here assuming fibre is unlimited in its bandwidth, we have 2310 premises requiring wireless backhaul....
900mb / 2310 = 0.39Mb/s wow, thats almost exactly the same number for satellite!! which is 0.34Mb/s per house, and most houses have more than a few devices. Given that FW has already maxed out and is in need of upgrading, this doesn't bode well for satellite which can't be upgraded without spending billions on launching more satellites (not to mention the cost of re-pointing many dishes).
4000mb / 2310 = 1.73Mb/s so much for 25mb/s being the minimum. This however can (and is designed to) be upgraded, either by adding more backhaul spectrum or running fibre to more towers. Running fibre to tower 5 or 6 in an 8 tower chain can actually tipple the bandwidth with the same amount of backhaul spectrum. This also adds redundancy to the chain albeit at slower speed.
12000mb / 1980 = 6.06Mb/s ok so that is better and fibre can also be added to more towers on an as needed basis. This can be done over time as the network is loaded up. Adding fibre to every 2nd tower allows 8000mb/s per tower with the same amount of backhaul spectrum as currently used today.
8000mb / 330 = 25mb/s ok so now we are finally talking!!! Now you know what it will take to upgrade FW so that it can keep up with fixed line. The 3 sectors per site can also be upgraded to 6 or more, doubling (or more) the amount of bandwidth or reducing the houses per sector.
A great article with more information on this can be found here.