Australia’s telco bodies associations for more dedicated 5G spectrum
Australia’s mobile market has undergone significant ome changes in recent years, particularly following the merger of TPG with Vodafone, becoming TPG Telecom.
Thee three MNOs have long provided extensive services based on LTE, but since 2020 they have focussed on the 5G platform.
5G services have been supported by recent spectrum auctions, though industry bodies including the AMTA have called for at least an additional 8GHz of spectrum to be reserved for 5G services by 2030. Spectrum which should be made available wuld cover the low, mid and mmWave bands. This would be optimal for urban areas as well as sparsely populated rural environments.
The additional spectrum would also help the MVNO sector, which for some years was held back by the inability of these smaller operators to access 5G services from their host networks. This in turn hampered their ability to develop a stronger subscriber base. Optus was the first MNO to provide 5G access to MVNOs, with Telstra planning to do so later in 2022.
Telstra’s 5G infrastructure is aimed at delivering data at up to 10Gb/s, but is focussed less on a boost in data speed than in connectivity. This is with a view to addressing the future challenges created by the IoT sector, wherein a vast range of appliances and devices can be interconnected. By June 2022, the company provided 85% population coverage with 5G.
TPG Telecom is building a Nokia-based 5G network (after the government had banned its former vendor Huawei from all 5G networks), and as of early 2022 the company claimed 85% population coverage in the ten largest cities and regions of the country.
Optus was also obliged to drop Huawei, and has since developed a multi-vendor approach to its 5G rollout, partnering with both Ericsson and Nokia. The first service, launched in January 2019, was priced to compete with fixed-line services offered over the NBN. Optus now operates more than 1,000 5G sites across the capital cities, as well as in key areas outside of these cities.Key developments:
- Vocus Group agrees to $3.5 billion takeover offer from a consortium comprising MIRA and Aware Super;
- TPG and Telstra sign ten-year agreement to share network assets;
- TPG Telecom sells its remaining tower portfolio for A$950 million;
- ACMA concludes 850/900MHz auction;
- $811.8 million is assigned by the government for mobile blackspot schemes;
- Southern Cross NEXT cable system lands at Sydney;
- ACCC proposes changes to the SAU governing NBN Co’s wholesale pricing, extending the remit to FttN and copper-based connections;
- 99% of premises can access fixed broadband with minimum speeds of 25Mb/s;
- Oman Australia Cable on target for completion by mid-2022;
- Report update includes operator data to Q1 2022, regulator’s market data updates, recent market developments.
Key companies mentioned in this report:
42-24, AARNET, Aldi Mobile, amaysim, Austar, ACCC, ACMA, Aware Super, Basslink Telecoms, Bechtel, Boost Mobile, BTB Australia, Fibercorp, H2 Cable, Hawaiki Submarine Cable, Hayu, Hulu, iiNet, Indosat Ooredoo, Inmarsat, Kogan, Lebara Mobile, Linfox, LoRa Alliance, M2, Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA), Macquarie Telecom, NBN Co, New Skies Satellite, O3b, Omantel, OneWeb, OPENetworks, OptiComm, OPT-NC, Optus, Ovo Mobile, PCCW, Pivit, Primus, RedTrain, SingTel, Softbank, SpaceX, Spark New Zealand, TasNetworks, Telstra, Thinxtra, TPG Telecom, TransACT, Uniti Group, Unwired, VHA, Viasat, Virgin Mobile, Vocus