Back in 2013, the Australian Communications & Media Authority auctioned off the 700MHz frequency, which would soon be vacated by the soon to be removed Analogue TV networks. Optus took part in the auction to secure spectrum in the coveted lower range frequency and won 2x 10MHz bands for a total of 20MHz in spectrum, and today the license to use the band goes live.
Spending a total of $650 Million also secured Optus spectrum in the 2.5GHz band which they began using in October, but today is all about the 700MHz frequency. From today, Optus will light up 270 mobile sites across capital cities and regional centres with 4G speeds utilising the 700MHz frequency.
Using 700MHz offers users an better service due to the better ability of lower frequency signals to penetrate buildings, essentially offering you better coverage when you’re inside.
Optus won’t be stopping with 270 sites today, Vice President, Corporate and Regulatory Affairs, Optus David Epstein said:
During January, Optus plans to switch on 4G 700 MHz on more than 1500 sites in metropolitan and regional locations. While Optus already offers 4G in many state capitals and major regional cities, we are improving our 4G network today with 700MHz in parts of the Sydney CBD, Chatswood and Eastern Suburbs; Brisbane CBD, the Gold and Sunshine Coasts; Adelaide CBD, Melbourne CBD, Geelong, Frankston and Mornington Peninsula; plus Hobart CBD, Perth CBD, Claremont and Cottlesloe. Whether you are in Armidale or Sydney in New South Wales, Townsville or Brisbane in Queensland, Ceduna or Adelaide in South Australia, or Wangaratta or Melbourne in Victoria, with the right device Optus 4G will have you covered as our network expands,
Optus has previously stated their mission to cover 90% of the Australian population with 4G by April.
Optus customers who live in an area with a tower supporting the new 700MHz 4G network will be able to access it if they use a compatible device. Optus has a large number of phones which do, including the Samsung Galaxy S5 and Note 4, LG G3, Sony Xperia Z3 and Z3 Compact handsets, with more coming soon.
If you’re wanting to see if you’re living or working in a compatible area, head on over to the Optus Coverage checker on their website.
Customers can check existing coverage and the plans for 4G over the next three months by visiting www.optus.com.au/coverage.