Optus Plans LTE For April Next Year

Telstra's already selling LTE devices. Vodafone's announced it'll have LTE by the end of the year. Optus isn't in that much of a hurry; it's just announced that its first LTE products will go on sale in April 2012.

Optus' announcement only covers a relatively small area: in April 2012 they'll offer LTE services to the Newcastle, Port Stephens, the Hunter Valley and Lake Macquarie areas. By mid-year, Optus plans to have Sydney, Melbourne and Perth covered. Other capital cities and regional areas will end up with service, but Optus isn't announcing when they'll see LTE as yet.

Optus stated that it is the only carrier testing LTE services on the 700Mhz spectrum band; those trials will take place in Bendigo, where the frequency was freed up due to the removal of analogue television services.

If all this talk of LTE has you scratching your head, you may find our guide to LTE and 4G services handy.

Technically speaking, LTE itself isn’t a 4G standard, since the International Telecommunications Union has decreed that the 4G label should only be used for services which can offer speeds of 1 gigabit per second. The 4G mantle is being reserved for LTE-Advanced or LTE-A, which is due to be finalised in 2011. We can expect to see LTE networks migrate to LTE-A over time, but given that there’s not yet any live networks for LTE in Australia, that process won’t necessarily happen in a hurry. But it certainly won’t stop the label “4G’ being thrown around with abandon.



    Thats grate. How about fixing your reception first. Optus has confirmed to me that reception in my suburb is not good yet there is no plans to fix it.

    They must be pretty confident on winning the 700MHZ Auction next year to be testing already...

    they'll all look pretty stupid if the next iphone has LTE capabilities and none of them are ready for it...

    Maybe we can expect 3G speeds from Optus LTE then?

    Never regretted going through the TIO to end my contract and go to Telstra.

    Plenty of LTE phones available in the US already. iPhone 5 may even be one of them.

    Don't expect any of them to work here, though. Verizon uses the 700MHz band; Telstra chose 1800MHz. Other telcos have chosen bands all over the map; 800, 900, 1700, 1900, 2100, 2600MHz... a world LTE phone will be a long time coming :-/

      Since Verizon uses 700MHz, there's an excellent chance that Verizon phones will work well on the Optus LTE net, assuming Optus do get that spectrum.

      I guess we'll just have to hope for 700/1800/2600MHz LTE phones, in time. That should cover the most common bands.

    Will that be TD LTE then?

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