Chinese equipment vendor Huawei has completed a trial of UMTS-900 network equipment in partnership with Optus Mobile. The pilot was conducted in the central west region of New South Wales using Huawei’s UMTS-900 transmitters and a team of Huawei and Optus personnel. UMTS-900 is seen as an ideal frequency for sparsely populated areas, as a single UMTS-900 base station provides a broader coverage than the 2100MHz frequency spectrum currently being used by the majority of the world’s 3G GSM carriers, therefore reducing the cost and length of time of rollout.
Optus is reviewing the UMTS-900 technology as part of its future mobile strategy and believes that deploying the 900MHz frequency band in parallel with its legacy GSM-900 network could result in swifter delivery to market in existing footprint areas and a reduction in costs when expanding to new areas. Optus plans further technical trials of the UMTS-900 network in the central west town of Dubbo over the coming months and is expected to make a decision on the technology later in 2007.