Telstra is also the only telco to make a 4G wireless device available, launching a Sierra wireless transmitter or dongle in May. Dongle devices will be offered until LTE handsets and tablets become available in Australia. The dongle works on both 850 and 1800 Mhz.
Vodafone is also improving its network coverage, beginning a 2G and 3G radio access network replacement program at all of its base stations in Australia. It will replace around 5800 existing 2G and 3G base station sites with Huawei's SingleRAN solution, which is capable of delivering 2G, 3G and 4G LTE from a single base station site. Vodafone will also install the new Huawei network equipment at more than 2200 new base station sites that it will bring into its network over the next year.
"This network upgrade will allow Vodafone to offer cutting edge mobile speeds and services across its mobile network," Huawei Australia's CTO, Peter Rossi, said in a statement. "Huawei's SingleRAN solution will enable Vodafone to upgrade to 4G or LTE at the flick of a switch, with the first LTE next generation services expected to come online later this year."
The new network equipment that is being installed is based on the maximum theoretical standards of 42MBps. Vodafone is also working with Huawei to prepare the Vodafone network for an upgrade to 4G or LTE, which has maximum theoretical download speeds of up to 150Mbps.
Vodafone and Huawei undertook live trials of LTE technology in Newcastle during the last quarter of 2010 and achieved download speeds of up to 74.3 Mbps, under test conditions.
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