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BCL expansion increases Q'town phone, net links

BCL network expansion increases Queenstown phone, Internet links

Broadcast Communications Limited (BCL), New Zealand's wireless communications network company, is expanding its digital microwave radio network into Queenstown, significantly increasing telecommunications links for the town.

BCL Managing Director Geoff Lawson said the expansion will provide an alternative backhaul option for phone companies and ISPs wanting to offer services to Queenstown businesses and local residents.

"Until now Queenstown has been constrained by a lack of alternative phone and Internet links and backhaul options," he said.

He said the appetite for Internet and phone services was increasing in many centres such as Queenstown and communications links had to keep pace to ensure regions could stay competitive.

As well as providing more options and greater competition for phone and Internet companies, BCL's Queenstown network expansion will increase the amount of back-up capacity available to improve reliability and safeguard calls in the event of an outage on existing phone links.

Geoff Lawson said because the network expansion into Queenstown is based on digital microwave radio (DMR) technology, it is protected from 'spade fade' - the accidental severing of cable or fibre links during earthworks - that can affect fibre and fixed-line links.

Mr Lawson said BCL has invested close to $2 million in the upgrade, which has seen a new mast built at its Coronet Peak transmission site to replace two existing poles. Multiple 155 Mbps digital microwave radio bearers and other new equipment has been installed at the Coronet Peak site and will be installed at a new site near the centre of Queenstown.

Each 155 Mbps bearer has the capacity to carry the equivalent of around 4,000 compressed simultaneous voice calls. The upgrade also means additional bandwidth can be quickly and cost-effectively added to meet future demand.

As well as paving the way for new phone and Internet links, the Coronet Peak mast also broadcasts Queenstown's television signals.

About BCL

Broadcast Communications Limited (BCL) is New Zealand's wireless communications network company and a leading wireless solutions partner to the communications industry. BCL provides broadcast and telecommunications network services, managed solutions, engineering design consultancy and field services to New Zealand's leading broadcasters, telecommunications providers and network operators. BCL is a member of the THL Group.


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