The 4G picture in Australia is a bit on the challenging side at the moment, with only a handful of 4G devices and a generally used spectrum that’s not used much overseas. Telstra’s said to be investigating another move that could muddy the picture even further, by using some of its 900Mhz spectrum for LTE services.
IT News reports on the plans, which are apparently only in the emergent phase right now; any plans to use 900Mhz LTE would run in concert with whatever 700Mhz capacity Telstra’s able to snaffle up as part of the digital dividend auctions. Telstra’s director of networks and access technologies told IT News:
“When we look at spectrum holistically we just cannot see that at some point in the future we won’t want to use every bit of spectrum available to us. It’s not necessarily a critical time frame; we think it will eventually get there anyway. What we’re trying to do is move it along a bit.”
Telstra’s been a frontrunner in faster mobile broadband in Australia for some time — although not always at the cheapest prices — so in one sense it’s laudable that it’s looking into every possible 4G alternative. The challenge here, however, is sourcing the necessary chipsets and devices to support a 900Mhz LTE rollout; we can only hope that whatever emerges out of this (if anything) has multiple-band support for additional frequencies in the same way that many mobiles are currently tri or quad-band. [ITWire]