Posted on 7-May-2010 09:33.
Filed under: News
Telecom New Zealand has today released the key findings and recommendations from Analysys Mason’s independent review of the XT mobile network.
Analysys Mason was commissioned by Telecom to conduct an independent review of the design, build and operation of the network as at 29 January 2010.
“The review has been both chastening and heartening at the same time,” said Paul Reynolds, CEO, Telecom New Zealand. “Clearly some serious errors were made but the report shows that XT is fundamentally sound, that Telecom, and our partner Alcatel Lucent are now on the right track. Significant progress in improving the robustness and reliability of XT has been made.”
The report says that XT’s network architecture aligns with best practice industry standards and forms the platform for high-quality current and future 3G mobile services New Zealand.
But it also says that, despite being within Telecom’s traffic forecasts, the rate of customer acquisition was too fast for the network in the early stages of its deployment. This created a number of compounding issues that contributed to the reliability and performance issues experienced and the partial network outages.
In short, the report says the network failed because the network and supporting operations were not ready to manage the levels of traffic it experienced. Also, software issues contributed to network instability.
“The fundamental problem was that the network and its operational processes were not able to adapt quickly enough during our ambitious launch programme; we acknowledge this and accept the findings of the report. Together Telecom and Alcatel-Lucent have already completed an extensive programme of improvements and the network is now performing well.
“Analysys Mason said it supported the steps to improve performance already underway in January, and it has made further recommendations. Telecom and Alcatel Lucent have already substantially delivered these too,” he said.
Although the XT network was designed to initially provide planned coverage that matched the CDMA network the initial configuration of the XT network and, some network build issues, led to coverage variability. To correct this, Telecom has since January 2010 improved utilisation of monitoring and measuring tools, added 27 new mobile sites and installed 115 new tower mounted amplifiers. These are now being added at the rate of 30 a week.
The report also notes that XT’s handling of 111 calls is aligned to international standards.