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Telecom welcomes customers onto 4G LTE trial

Telecom welcomes customers onto 4G LTE trial

Telecom New Zealand welcomed a small group of customers in Auckland and Wellington on to its 4G LTE trials this week.

Around 100 individuals – across the consumer, SME and Gen-i segments - will take part in the trial, which aims to gather information on how people will use the 4G LTE network. Telecom plans to have a commercial service initially available later this calendar year and will roll the technology out progressively over time as demand warrants.

Telecom CEO Retail Chris Quin said the customer trials were another big step toward Telecom offering 4G LTE to its customers.

Mr Quin said: “We are already offering a high quality experience and some groundbreaking products and services over our 100% 3G Smartphone Network - and we’ve had very good feedback from our customers on the quality, speed and reliability of the network.

“However, we know that the future is about data, and increasingly it will be about mobile data – we’re seeing an explosion in mobile technology and mobile data use globally and New Zealand is no exception to that. Telecom is focussed on making sure New Zealand stays ahead of the technological wave, and the trialling and rollout of a 4G LTE network is an essential part of that.”

Gen-i Australasia CEO Tim Miles said the trial will provide Gen-i clients with the opportunity to experience 4G LTE and to look at new opportunities for leveraging Telecom’s high speed network for business benefits.

“The move towards a new 4G LTE network presents our clients with the flexibility to consider delivering applications and services across our high speed mobile network. Telecom has once more shown through its investment in optical transport, and today’s announcement, that we are committed to providing the right capabilities to support New Zealand business – anytime, anywhere and via a range of devices.”

Telecom announced late last year that it had installed the 4G LTE technology in four locations (Lower Hutt, the North Shore of Auckland, Waipukurau in the southern Hawke’s Bay and in a small area of Rotorua) and would be testing the equipment over the Christmas and New Year break. Huawei is conducting the trials in Auckland and Rotorua, and Alcatel-Lucent in Wellington and Waipukurau.

Consumer and SME Customer Trials

Each consumer and SME trialist has been equipped with a device capable of receiving a 4G LTE signal over Telecom’s network. Over the next 6 weeks they will take part in a series of tests using the devices and report back to Telecom on their experiences.

Five people from Capacity Infrastructure Services, who manage the water networks in Wellington, Lower Hutt and Upper Hutt are taking part in the trial. Evan Cowley, IT specialist at Capacity, said that he could see real business benefits in the faster speeds offered by 4G LTE, and that his team was looking forward to putting the network through its paces during the trial.

“We have staff who are offsite a lot, and they often need to use Google Maps, Google Earth and get remote access to databases for their work. The speed of the mobile connection makes a big difference, and we’d be very interested to see what 4G LTE can do for us.”

Gen-i Client Trials

The Gen-i client trials have been tailored to meet the needs of each organisation and include the consumption of relevant Gen-i ICT services alongside the 4G LTE network.

Gen-i clients involved in the trial include Westpac, Mitre10 and TVNZ.


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