Sunday, 27 September 2020

Telstra 5G aims to cover 75% of Aussie population by June 2021

by Harry Baldock, Total Telecom
Tuesday 04 August 20

The telco has made rapid progress with its 5G deployment since launching commercially in May last year

Telstra has seemingly set lofty goals for its 5G coverage over the coming year, hoping to cover three-quarters of the Australian population by June 2021. Since its launch in May 2019, Telstra’s 5G network has been expanding quickly. Almost a year since launch, the operator announced that its brand of 5G was available in 47 cities…

Telstra has seemingly set lofty goals for its 5G coverage over the coming year, hoping to cover three-quarters of the Australian population by June 2021.

Since its launch in May 2019, Telstra’s 5G network has been expanding quickly. Almost a year since launch, the operator announced that its brand of 5G was available in 47 cities, covering around eight million people, well ahead of its initial targets of 35 locations by June. 

Since then, the operator has added a handful more locations, bringing their total coverage to around a third of the population.

"Our 5G network already covers around one-third of the population," said Penn. "Telstra's 5G is already rolling out in 53 cities and regional towns across Australia and more than 10 million Australians now live, work or pass through our 5G network footprint every day."

Around 210,000 5G services are currently connected to the network, according to Penn.

Increasing coverage to the aforementioned 75% in just under a year is no small feat, though it should be remembered that, despite the country’s enormous size, its population tends to be situated in a small number of densely populated urban centres. Just as we see with fibre deployments around the world, it is always the rural populations who are the last to receive improved connectivity and present the greatest challenge.

The Australian regulator is hoping to auction additional high-band spectrum next year, which will certainly be of interest to Telstra, but this will not be particularly helpful when it comes to rural coverage due to its limited range. Instead, Telstra will have to rely on its existing holdings in the 900 MHz and 850 MHz bands to do the heavy lifting of its widespread 5G rollout, even if the ultimate speeds these bands provide will not be quite as impressive as the higher flavours of 5G.

In related news, Telstra’s network security came into question over the weekend, when what was at the time thought to be a denial of service attack led to a loss of coverage for a large portion of its customers. However, the fault has since been identified as a mundane technical issue rather than a malicious cyber attack.

“The massive messaging storm that presented as a denial of service cyber attack has been investigated by our security teams and we now believe that it was not malicious, but a domain name server issue,” said the company in a statement.

 

Also in the news:
Etisalat’s CODERS strategy highlights the value of openness
New subsea cable linking Chile to Australia snubs Chinese connection
With vendors beginning to delay new orders, is Vodafone Idea out of time?

 

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