Does Vodafone's 850MHz Network Make A Difference In Sydney?

The last time Lifehacker tested Vodafone 3G, Gus wasn't impressed. When we asked you directly, you weren't that impressed either. Have things improved? Over at CNET, Joe Hanlon took a pair of phones, a pair of shoes and plenty of time to test out Vodafone's 850MHz data strength against Telstra. His conclusions? Vodafone's network might just be on a bit of an upswing.

It's not exactly news to anyone that Vodafone's network hasn't been the quickest in the Australian market for some time, but the company's been at pains to talk up its new 850MHz network. That's the same frequency that Telstra uses for its NextG services. The lower wavelength should ensure better in-building performance, and by shifting some customer usage off the existing 900/2100MHz network Vodafone should be able to better load balance its entire network and deliver more consistent data coverage and speed. At least, that's the theory.

Hanlon took two Samsung Galaxy S II phones, capable of connecting to the 850MHz WCDMA network and tested across Sydney. His conclusions? Telstra's still king of the hill when it comes to 850MHz network speed, but not by as much as you might expect. Annoyingly, there was also a single location where he couldn't get Vodafone signal at all. [CNET]

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