Optus has chosen Huawei for the deployment of its 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) network.
Phase one of the network will be rolled out in Newcastle and surrounding areas, including the Hunter Valley, Lake Macquarie and Port Stephens. This will be followed by Sydney, Melbourne and Perth in mid-2012.
Phase two will deliver the service to Brisbane and Adelaide as well as some regional areas; the telco has not yet scheduled a completion date for this phase.
The network will operate in the 1800MHz frequency and will be built on Huawei’s SingleRAN equipment, which enables 2G, 3G and 4G mobile services to be delivered from a single base station.
Huawei’s SingleRAN technology has been implemented across Optus’ regional network using the 900MHz and 2100MHz frequencies.
The telco and Huawei have been partners in rolling out mobile technologies across Australia since 2007.
The network build follows Optus' announcement of its plan to roll out a 4G LTE network in September 2011.
It also follows the signing last month of a $230 million conditional agreement between Optus and the Seven Group Holdings for the acquisition of Vividwireless Group.
Under the deal Optus will acquire both the vividwireless and unwired brands including the operating businesses, customer bases, spectrum licences and the brands' 4G network.
The telco will also gain access to about 98MHz of spectrum in the 2.3GHz band, which it will harness to build a new Long Term Evolution Time Division Duplex (LTE-TDD) 4G network and integrate with the number two telco’s 4G network.
Optus is not the only local telco to begin investing in 4G. Last year Telstra kicked off its 4G LTE service, using 4G to boost mobile internet speeds.
Vodafone also signed a deal with Huawei for its SingleRAN hardware last year to replace all of the telco’s 2G and 3G radio access equipment across its entire Australian network as part of its major network improvement initiative.
On the end-user side, Telstra partnered with HTC for the launch of Australia's first 4G smartphone, the Velocity in January. Telstra also partnered with Samsung for the launch of Australia's first 4G-compatible tablet, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 4G, in February.
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