In the wake of the conclusion last week of Australia’s 3.6GHz spectrum auction, Telstra has announced that, having been given early access to the frequencies it secured, it has now enabled 5G for the first time at sites in Melbourne and Sydney.
With the cellco having started work on switching on 5G technology at its cell sites back in August, it has claimed that the switch-on in the two aforementioned cities means it has become the first of the country’s operators to have 5G-enabled sites in all major cities. In total, Telstra claims to now have enabled 5G at a total of 187 mobile base stations, with a further 13 expected to be added before the end of this year. Looking ahead, Telstra has said it intends to continue expanding 5G coverage to more cities, regional centres and high traffic areas in 2019, while it noted that, when commercial 5G devices become available to buy in 2019, its network ‘will be ready to connect them’.
Meanwhile, having bagged a raft of new spectrum in the recently-closed auction, Telstra noted that, when combined with existing holdings, it now has 60MHz of contiguous 5G-suitable spectrum in all major capital cities and between 50MHz-80MHz of contiguous 5G spectrum in regional areas.