Australian mobile network operator Optus aims to launch a Time Division Duplex Long Term Evolution (TD-LTE) network in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) in the early part of next year, ZDNet Australia reports. With the operator expected to close down the network of Vividwireless – which it acquired earlier this year – in February 2013, it is understood that it plans to use the 98MHz of spectrum in the 2.3GHz band which will be freed up as a result of such a development.
The TD-LTE network deployment is expected to complement Optus’s existing 4G rollout, which it is carrying out using the 1800MHz band. With that network still being constructed, the report also notes that Optus expects to extend its 1800MHz LTE footprint to Adelaide in the first half of next year, while in Brisbane (where 4G was launched in October 2012) it plans to boost the number of sites from 50 to 100 by the end of 2013. Further expansion, meanwhile, will see Optus customers in other parts of metropolitan Queensland, as well as in Wollongong in New South Wales, gain access to the superfast mobile broadband service from next year.
As previously reported by CommsUpdate, in September 2012 Optus announced the commercial launch of 4G services for residential subscribers, having initially made its LTE services available to SME and government users in Perth and Sydney two months earlier. At the time of the residential launch, coverage was initially limited to Sydney, Perth and Newcastle, while Melbourne was added to that list later in the month.