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Its Live: Vodafone 3G+ ‘On’.. But Where’s 4G?

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However, next-gen 4G LTE will be rolled out “early” 2013, Vodafone confirmed today, as Vodafone play catch up with upgrades to 3G network, switching 3G+ service live today.

The troubled telco was forced to upgrade its calamitous 3G network, after it crashed and burned in late 2010/2011.

But Telstra’s 4G service is now almost one year old with several hundred thousand users and was further expanded last month, while Optus’ 4G went live last month. 

Voda’s “most critical phase” of its $1.7 billion network upgrade is now complete with all base station sites equipped with 3G+ and 4G-ready technology, it confirmed today.

Vodafone 3G+ (Dual Carrier High Speed Packet Access+) is now live in parts of metro Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Perth, Adelaide and Newcastle.

Customers with 3G + ready smartphones can receive data speeds from 2 – 16Mbps, or eight times faster than existing 3G service.

Vodafone users’ current mobiles, tablets and broadband devices will work on 3G+ but say the “optimum” data experience will only be available on 3G+ compatible devices which includes the newer iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S III, and new iPad.

“Over the last two years, we’ve been working hard to upgrade the Vodafone network, and now have brand new equipment at every Vodafone base station across Australia,” says Peter Ryan, General Manager Networks.

“We’re now ready to accelerate our data speeds and the speed of network upgrades with the introduction of Vodafone 3G+ this month and our planned rapid roll out of 4G (LTE) from early next year.”

Vodafone’s network joint venture with Optus will stretch the telcos coverage to 96% of the Australian population, from as early as April 2013.

For more information on Vodafone’s current national network upgrades and roll out, visit: www.vodafone.com.au/network