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Optus and Vodafone Australia roll out shared 3G network

Posted on 24-Nov-2004 23:42 | Filed under: News


The companies signed an agreement to form an alliance to share 3G network sites and radio infrastructure across Australia. Following a heads of agreement announced on 26 August 2004, Optus and Vodafone are the first mobile operators in Australia to finalise an agreement to build and operate a joint national 3G radio network, sharing more than 2,000 base stations nationally.

Initial 3G sites will cover Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra followed by Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and other regions.

The agreement to share network infrastructure encompasses both co-located sites and shared network sites. The network installed on shared sites is to be held through an unincorporated joint venture between the parties. A co-located site is where Optus and Vodafone share a single set of 3G antennas and feeders and co-locate the two carriers’ 3G base stations in a single equipment shelter. This type of site will be deployed in the inner areas of Sydney and Melbourne. Shared network sites use a single set of 3G antennas and feeders and share a 3G base station.

Optus and Vodafone will each own a 50 per cent interest in the assets, have access to 50 per cent of the capacity and share the cost of building and operating the network.

Optus estimates the cost of independently rolling out 2,000 3G base stations to cover Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide to be approximately A$435 million (US$345 million).