Vodafone reaches milestone in its $1.7b upgrade

Vodafone is continuing to work on upgrading its network to 3G+ and 4G capabilities.

All Vodafone base stations are now equipped with 3G+ equipment and are ready for 4G network technology, the company has announced.

The embattled telco, which has experienced extensive network problems and customer loss, is spending $1.7 billion upgrading its network.

“Over the last two years, we’ve been working hard to upgrade the Vodafone network and now have brand new equipment at every Vodafone base station across Australia,” Peter Ryan, general manager networks, said in a statement.

Vodafone claims speeds on its 3G+ network will be 1Mbps to 16Mbps, with average speeds of 8Mbps. Its 4G network, which it plans to launch in early 2013, will reach speeds between 2Mbps and 40Mbps, with average download speeds of 15Mbps.

Meanwhile, Vodafone said its 3G network is currently capable of achieving 0.5Mbps to 5Mbps, with average speeds of 1Mbps.

The $1.7 billion upgrade isn’t the only course of action the telco has taken to improve its network. It recently announced it had signed a memorandum of understanding with Optus to combine their resources to improve network coverage and cut costs.

The agreement will also allow the two telcos to more aggressively pursue the rollout of 3.5G (HSPA+) and 4G services, with the partnership jointly building 500 new base stations across shared sites over the next four years.

Vodafone Hutchison Australia recently apologised to customers for problems on the Vodafone network, as it recorded a reported customer loss of 178,000 in the first half of this year.

Vodafone Hutchison Australia chief executive, Bill Morrow, pledged to upgrade the carrier’s network and improve customer service, while also asking for help from the government competing with Telstra.

Follow Stephanie McDonald on Twitter: @stephmcdonald0

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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