Optus and Vodafone have both been wholesaling their 3G networks for years, but Telstra has held off, keeping its beloved NextG network free from third party data hoggers. But all that's about to change - a little bit - with Telstra confirming it will begin wholesaling part of its 3G network, but restricting the offered bandwidth.
Josh Taylor over at ZDNet tells us that the nation's largest Telco has decided to start offering a 3G wholesale service to resellers, although it will restrict the speed of the wholesale network to between 300 kilobits per second (Kbps) and 1.1 megabits per second (Mbps). That's significantly less than what NextG offers, especially for HSPA+ devices.
the decision to restrict speeds is in order to limit any impact on Telstra's network for their own customers, who have already begun to complain as mobile customers have jumped to Next G en masse following Optus and Vodafone's network issues in recent years.
At the moment, Telstra is only offering the wholesale network as a postpaid offering, with prepaid and wireless broadband solutions to become available later this year.
While it was inevitable that Telstra would eventually begin offering wholesale services on its network, it does offer up a solid opportunity for ISPs who are looking to bundle a mobile service with a broadband service in an NBN world. It will be interesting to see which companies become resellers of Telstra over the next 12 months.