Vodafone and 3 Mobile to launch new 3G mobile network

Vodafone Hutchison Australia, operating the Vodafone and 3 Mobile brands in Australia, will launch a new 3G mobile network on the same frequency as Telstra’s Next G network.

Vodafone 3 Mobile VHATelstra and VHA have announced plans to shut down their 3GIS joint venture network, cutting off 3 Mobile and Telstra customers that use the 2100Mhz 3G network. In shutting down the 3GIS network, both Vodafone and Telstra will divide up the network infrastructure and re-deploy it on their own networks, increasing capacity and coverage.

Vodafone, since merging with 3 Mobile in 2009 to create VHA has been operating essentially two separate mobile networks, today’s announcement details the company’s push to unify both 3 Mobile and Vodafone customers onto the one core network.  The merged network will leverage VHA’s base stations, core network, spectrum assets and global strategic vendor relationship to launch a new network on the 850Mhz frequency used by Telstra Next G and expand Vodafone’s existing network footprint.

Nigel Dews, CEO of VHA believes the new network will be better able to handle the data usage and 3G coverage customers expect and capitalises on the $550 million already spent on the joint Vodafone/3 Mobile network integration.

“We are creating a stronger, better network for our customers, which will deliver a superior customer experience and support ever increasing levels of data usage and expanded areas of coverage,”

“Our continued investment is aimed at supporting the next phase of the mobile revolution. Data growth on our networks is exploding, particularly with more and more customers using multiple mobile devices like smartphones and iPads,” said Dews.

VHA’s investments include:

• 1,500 sites on a new 850MHz network with 350 sites already turned on and a further 50 expected to be live before the end of next month, providing more in building coverage and additional capacity for areas where data demand from smartphones and mobile broadband is high and growing.
• 1,400 new sites on the 3G network including 900 in capital cities to deepen network coverage.
• 500 new regional sites to support regional expansion and strengthen our city fringe and regional coverage.