Telecom is investing more than half a billion dollars in the national rollout of a new 3G mobile network by June next year.
The network will use Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) technology on a frequency of 850 MHz.
Telecom will spend $379 million on the network in the 2009 financial year and a further $195 million in 2010, totalling $574 million.
The company has partnered with telecommunications company Alcatel Lucent, whom will be building the WCDMA network.
Telecom CEO Paul Reynolds says this frequency will allow mobile broadband speeds up to three times faster than any current network. “Telecom customers will get the very best coverage in New Zealand and abroad. Mobile customers will have a service that will operate very well on networks in Australia.”
Telecom Retail CEO Alan Gourdie says the technology used will extend the 3G network to 97 percent of New Zealanders. “This will be genuine coverage for all New Zealanders, not just those who live in the cities.”
Telecom is aiming to reach 100 percent of the population in the future.
Music and video users will be well served on the new network, adds Gourdie. “It will take only 14 seconds to download an average-sized music file. That’s important, as the longer it takes to download the more chance of corruption.”
Telecom will be offering the service on new handsets developed by companies such as Sony Ericsson, Nokia and Motorola.
No pricing plans were announced. Existing and new Telecom customers will have the first opportunity to migrate to the new network.