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Australian Telstra reports on the number of SMS and calls at opening matches of Rugby World Cup 2003
Posted on 15-Oct-2003 23:46 | Tags Filed under: News

Telstra mobile network handled 150,000 voice calls and 73,000 SMS during the opening match of the Rugby World Cup 2003, at Telstra Stadium in Sydney.

In addition to this huge number, more than 320,000 voice calls and more than 200,000 SMS were sent across Telstra's network from match venues across four Australian states over the weekend.

Telstra Infrastructure Services Rugby World Cup Project Director, Mr Anthony Goonan, said Telstra switched more mobile voice calls last Friday than at the 2000 Olympic Games opening ceremony, even though the RWC crowd was just over 80,000 due to the reduced Telstra Stadium capacity.

"SMS once again proved to be a hugely popular method of communications where SMS peaked on Friday night at the stadium with Telstra customers sending 300 messages every minute between 6 and 7pm," he said.

"Nationally, more than 5.6 million mobile originating SMS were sent compared with 4.6 million on Christmas Eve 2002.

"To meet the expected demand, Telstra increased capacity by 65 per cent across its GSM network and 40 per cent across its CDMA network at tournament venues nationally," Mr Goonan said.

Fixed line international direct calls from Australia to Argentina (the first match in the Rugby World Cup) increased by more than 85 per cent for the opening ceremony and on Saturday, when the New Zealand All Blacks played Italy, inbound international calls from New Zealand increased by more than 60 per cent, showing huge international interest in Rugby.

At Telstra Dome (Melbourne) over the weekend, more than 57,000 voice calls were switched through the network and more than 40,000 SMS were sent and received by Telstra customers. At Subiaco Oval, 30,000 voice calls and more than 25,000 SMS were sent across the network.

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