Telstra's been talking up their NextG network for some time as the world's fastest, and for good reason. At 14.4Mbps, it currently is the world's fastest, although there aren't a lot of devices on the market that take advantage of that speed (most HSDPA phones and modems run at 7.2Mbps).
But, at the company's annual Investor Day briefing today, they unveiled a new modem produced in conjunction with Qualcomm, Ericsson and Sierra Wireless, to blow the current network's 14.4Mbps speeds out of the water. The new modem will be capable of 21Mbps, which is the speed Telstra will be taking its NextG network to early next year, with trials starting next month.
The technology, called enhanced HSPA (or eHSPA), will not only offer much faster speeds than are currently available, but will also improve network efficiency and offer increased capacity for all the consumers that
will flock trickle over to NextG.
Of course, knowing Telstra, when they do launch this super-fast modem, they'll also price it beyond the reach of us mere mortals. But still, for wireless internet that covers most of Australia and offers near ADSL2+ speeds, you'd expect to pay a premium of some kind, wouldn't you?
Telstra boosts network speeds, unveils world's fastest mobile device
Telstra today unveiled another world first for the Next G™ network - the fastest mobile broadband modem on the planet capable of reaching peak network downlink speeds of 21Mbps.
Speaking at the company's annual Investor Day briefing, Mike Wright, Executive Director, Wireless Engineering and Operations, confirmed Telstra was on track to super charge Next G™ network speeds with the 21Mbps capability by the end of the year.
At the Investor Day, Telstra hosted its first public enhanced HSPA (eHSPA) data session, showcasing the enhanced network speeds and demonstrating the capabilities of the super-fast new modem. Trials of the 21Mbps mobile broadband modem will begin in December with a full commercial launch to follow early next year.
"This is truly game-changing," Mr Wright said. "The new technology will unlock opportunities for many of our customers by bridging the gap between wired and wireless broadband connectivity.
"The surge in available data speeds will allow more Australians to work away from the office. They will be equipped to integrate new applications - including web conferencing, live high definition streaming video, high-speed web browsing and seamless virtual private network access - into the way they do business on the move.
"While for consumers, it means access to a whole new world of internet-hosted mobile applications and the mainstream adoption of the mobile phone as the preferred way to access and browse the Internet and email in Australia.
"Working with our partners Sierra Wireless, Qualcomm and Ericsson, we have developed the world's fastest mobile broadband device - almost three times faster than the fastest devices currently available - which will push the speed barrier to levels not seen anywhere else on earth."
The eHSPA upgrade will ensure the Next G™ network remains the most advanced national mobile network on the planet.
Mr Wright said that while the new, faster peak network speed was the headline benefit, eHSPA provides other critical enhancements to the Next G™ network.
"Apart from speeding up our already super-fast network, eHSPA gives us improved network efficiency to build capacity and maintain the quality of our service so we can continue to welcome customers to the Next G™ network," Mr Wright said.
"Australia is seeing exponential growth in the demand for mobile broadband and this burgeoning popularity puts pressure on network operators to ensure network reliability is maintained and give consumers the fast experience they seek. Telstra has a proven and experienced engineering team to deliver just that.
"Peak network downlink speeds on the Next G™ network will have evolved from 3.6Mbps to 21Mbps in just over two years, providing extra speed, flexibility and productivity in the network footprint covering more than two million square kilometres and 99 per cent of the Australian populations."
Speeds represented are peak network downlink speeds. Actual customer download speeds will be less and will vary due to network configuration, congestion, distance from the cell, local conditions, hardware, software and other factors.