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$500 million to build nationwide mobile broadband

Vodafone invests $500 million to build nationwide mobile broadband

Vodafone New Zealand is extending its 3G broadband network to reach 97% of the places New Zealanders live, work and play, bringing its total 3G infrastructure investment to $500 million.

At the TUANZ Rural Broadband Symposium today, Vodafone General Manager Corporate Affairs, Tom Chignell announced the network build is under way.

“The network extension means we’ll be able to offer true broadband speeds to almost every New Zealander, and especially our rural customers, by April 2010.”

Vodafone’s 3G broadband footprint currently sits at around 63% of the population. By 2010 it will cover 97% - the same reach as the existing 2G network.

“This means broadband will be available on customers' mobiles AND it can be used as a cost effective home solution especially in areas where no land line based broadband is available,” says Chignell.

“Many of those in rural New Zealand who are stuck on dialup internet will have access to world class broadband services and be able to enjoy all the benefits that these services will bring.

“It will change the way New Zealanders think about accessing the internet; by improving devices and offering lower prices eg a dollar a day for 10Mb of data, we are making broadband accessible to all.”

An enhancement of the downlink speed to 7.2 Mbps is currently being rolled out. In the future, peak downlink speeds will range up to 28.8 Mbps and uplink speeds will be up to 11.5 Mbps using High Speed Packet Access (HSPA).
This also provides a seamless network path to Long Term Evolution (LTE) with downlink speeds of 100 Mbps.

Already Vodafone has handsets available that operate on the expanded 3G network and will soon launch more handsets and data devices, including a Vodem (USB modem) and Vodafone Mobile Connect card.


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