New Zealand incumbent fixed line and mobile operator Telecom New Zealand has hinted that it may offer Apple’s iPhone handset to customers on its new NZD300 million (USD241.2 million) mobile network. The company’s director of mobile operations Martin Butler said the subject was still a ‘commercially sensitive issue’, but confirmed it was a ‘good inference’, given that Telecom’s under construction network infrastructure is capable of supporting the same 850MHz GSM/EDGE technology supported by Apple’s innovative handset. Mr Butler said the detailed plan of the network’s footprint was now in place and under the operator’s current rollout timetable, is expected to be launched in November. At launch the new system will cover 97% of New Zealanders with 2G technology – similar to the figure supported on its legacy CDMA network. 3G coverage for mobile broadband services will be available at the same date, Mr Butler said, but only in the three main urban centres of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. Elsewhere, Telecom mobile customers will need to use the operator’s CDMA2000 1xEV-DO Rev A network.
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