Thursday, 27 February 2020 16:25

Telstra and Ericsson extend 4G range to 200km

By
 Telstra CEO Andy Penn (L) and Ericsson ANZ head Emilio Romeo Telstra CEO Andy Penn (L) and Ericsson ANZ head Emilio Romeo

Telstra and Ericsson have announced what they claim to be a world-first 200km LTE cell range capability on a commercial mobile broadband network.

Achieved by a software upgrade to Telstra's Ericsson Radio System based network, the first extended reach call was completed using a Telstra site at Mount Dowe, New South Wales.

"This is a critical capability to enable the benefits of 4G broadband coverage to be shared over the full extent of Telstra's mobile coverage footprint," the companies said in a joint statement.

This capability will become commercially available later in 2020 in "select locations," providing particular value to customers in rural, regional, and offshore areas.

Ericsson Australia and New Zealand head Emilio Romeo, said, “We’re delighted to partner with Telstra as we continue to pursue mobile network innovations. This breakthrough means that with an Ericsson-developed software upgrade, we will be able to extend the current LTE call range from 100km up to 200km, catering to the unique needs of Australia, given its land mass and geographical size.”

Ericsson and Telstra achieved the world’s first 200km 3G cell range in 2007.

Telstra Network Engineering executive Channa Seneviratne said, “Effectively doubling the current 4G coverage range of a mobile base station is a huge win for regional and remote Australia. We live in a vast nation and fast data in more places is critical in ensuring that we are providing the best coverage for our customers, whether they're in the city or the country.

"Telstra continually works with our partners like Ericsson to provide innovative solutions to meet our business and customer needs. Extending the coverage of a mobile base station through an innovative technical solution is yet another example of this collaboration. This solution will be considered as an option in certain locations to ensure that our LTE network has the coverage and capacity needed now and into the future.”

Telstra chief executive Andy Penn pointed out that the extended range has implications for IoT projects as well as mobile phone services.

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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