Telstra To Ramp Up Mobile Network Investment
Penn stated the investment will be made as Telstra seeks “to continue to have the best telecommunications networks in Australia”.
“We will increase our total capex investments to 15 per cent of sales for the next two years, providing more than another half a billion dollars for mobiles,” Penn commented. “In total, over three years to June 2017 we expect to have invested more than $5bn into Telstra’s leading mobile network.
“We will continue to expand our 4G footprint to 99 per cent of the population. We will increase our overall footprint to more than 2.5m square kilometres, which we believe is around double that of our next nearest competitor.”
Penn said Telstra will build in excess of 750 new mobile base stations, which will see its total network increase to over 9,000 sites, and will deploy in excess of 750 small cells, providing in-fill in areas of low signal strength.
“We will start rapidly deploying the next generation of LTE technology, including voice over LTE, LTE broadcast and the next stage of LTE advanced, delivering peak network speeds of up to 600 Mbps,” he commented.
“By fully leveraging our superior spectrum holdings we will create new levels of coverage and performance leadership for 4GX.”
A Vodafone-commissioned report released last month found Telstra customers are paying a premium of $20 per month for fixed-line services and $9 per month for mobile services over other operators, pointing to what it stated are structural issues in the telecommunications market.
Penn stated Telstra has been committed to investing in its mobile network.
“There is a lot of noise from our competitors about the fairness of Telstra’s superior mobile network,” he observed. “But it is there because we have had the vision and we have been prepared to invest.
“Let’s face it, all three operators have the capacity and the balance sheets to invest. The only difference between us is Telstra has consistently been prepared to do so.”