Telecom will retain exclusivity on new 850MHz network

27 Oct 2008

Telecom New Zealand has confirmed that it will not be allowing other operators to piggyback on its new 850MHz W-CDMA 3G mobile network until at least 2011. The telco says it will not be signing wholesale deals which will give operators access to the high speed system, which is expected to be fully up and running by the middle of next year. The news will come as a blow to wholesale partners such as TelstraClear, which is using the Telecom CDMA network to offer mobile services alongside its own fixed line portfolio. Telecom has committed to keeping the CDMA network in service until 2012, though it will be encouraging its own customers to migrate to the new W-CDMA system by offering free handset deals. A report from The Dominion Post quotes Telecom Wholesale’s chief executive Matt Crockett, who says: ‘Telecom’s [wholesale] customers would have liked to get access to the new network sooner.’ He adds that TelstraClear’s parent company, Telstra, limited wholesale access to its own 850MHz network in its home market Australia from its launch in 2006 until recently.

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