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New Year’s Eve data usage predicted to reach record levels

Network

Posted on December 29, 2017

2 min read

Australians know how to bring in the New Year.

And whether it is watching the amazing fireworks displays we see across the country, parties with friends and family, a night out on the town or relaxing at home compiling the annual list of New Year’s resolutions, we love to share those celebrations with our families and friends.

This New Year’s Eve period we are predicting Australians will download approximately 1500 terabytes of data – that’s the equivalent of one person continuously watching 57 years of High Definition content – an increase of 47 per cent from last year.

We predict there will be 47 million calls from mobiles – up 15 per cent from last year – and around 91 million text messages sent.

We find that peak texting begins just as the New Year starts. Last year more than 4.1 million text messages were sent between midnight and 1am.

The increase in data usage on our mobile network is a trend we see every day.

Nine in 10 Australian mobile phone owners now use a smartphone with data usage on our mobile network continuing to grow throughout the year as a result of the increasing demand for news and entertainment, the popularity of instant video capture applications like Instagram and Snapchat and more access to high-speed 4G and 4GX technology.

At special times of the year, like New Year’s Eve, we can share our celebrations with family and friends no matter where they are, which helps make these events even more memorable.

May I wish everyone a safe and happy New Year’s celebration and best wishes for 2018.

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#MWC17: Making sense of IoT

featured IoT

Posted on February 26, 2017

3 min read

IoT, NB IoT, Cat M1….. so many acronyms, but what does it all mean?

Right now I’m at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the largest mobile industry gathering in the world. As we expected, IoT demonstrations and technology are everywhere –in particular the ability to connect to the Internet of Things (IoT) over a 4G LTE network.

This is part of the 3GPP standard and the latest evolution of our mobile network, supported by a large existing ecosystem encompassing network size, device management and security.  There are demonstrations set up for two 3GPP IoT technologies – NB IoT and Cat M1, each having different characteristics to support a large variety of different use cases.

In a nutshell:

  • IoT: The Internet of Things, put simply, is lots of “things” connected to the internet, even allowing those “things” to talk to each other.
  • Cat M1: The devices are low-complexity and that helps drive down their cost. They’re ideally suited to medium bitrate use cases for things such as vehicle telematics, voice support, consumer and healthcare wearables, and smart electricity metering
  • NB IoT: Narrowband IoT technology is for low bit rate technologies and targets both outdoor and deep indoor coverage, as well as lower cost and long battery life (up to 10 years) connected devices. Some example use cases include livestock and crop monitoring.

Today Telstra, together with Ericsson, made an announcement on our Cat M1 capability and took a huge step forward in supporting IoT.

We announced we are the first to complete network software deployment across Australia, via a live trial, and when activated, will enable one of the world’s largest Cat-M1 IoT footprint. Cat-M1 capability will allow Telstra to deploy a comprehensive range of Internet of Things (IoT) applications quickly and flexibly – accelerating the growth of Australia’s IoT ecosystem.

We’ve started testing this functionality at early trials in Australia, including at Pooley Wines in regional Tasmania, and have been working with AgTech company The Yield, who have an IoT-based data platform.

Some of the results of the Tasmanian trial are even being showcased in an Ericsson booth at Mobile World Congress via a remote demonstration of the live data. The demo shows that The Yield’s sensors deployed at the winery are collecting data on things like soil moisture and temperature, rainfall, solar radiation, and wind speed and director. This not only allows decisions to be made in real-time, but also provides predictive changes and trends for better decision making overall.

If you combine this technology with Telstra’s expansive 4G network which covers over 98% of the Australian population – the opportunities are endless and I’m excited to see how its use develops over the next few years as we deliver world class experiences for our customers.

 

 

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Favourite holiday hotspots are covered by our mobile network this summer

Telstra News

Posted on December 15, 2015

3 min read

As the mercury starts to rise at this time of year, people around the country are starting to plan their escape routes out of the cities to their favourite holiday destination over the Christmas and New Year break.

During the summer holidays, network traffic has been seen to double or triple in most popular holiday hotspots compared to network usage over the winter months. Conversely, as workers take time off to soak in the sun or spend time with the family, network traffic in major cities can fall by around 30% over the break.

The migration of network traffic starts before Christmas and extends through the New Year period and, depending on the popularity of the holiday location, will start to subside from around mid- January, returning to normal around the Australia Day weekend which marks the unofficial end to the holiday period.

And with shiny new devices waiting under the Christmas tree for some lucky people, I am sure we will see even more activity, more people and more devices come onto Telstra’s network this holiday season.

To keep up with the influx of holiday goers into coastal towns, and with our aim of helping our customers enjoy the same quality of service they are used to during the year, we have been busy upgrading the network and boosting capacity in over 70 holiday hotspots across Australia.

Some of the popular destinations that received additional coverage in the Holiday Hotspot program include Sorrento, Phillip Island, Gold Coast, Byron Bay, Margaret River, and the Yorke Peninsula.

Since last Christmas, we have completed extensive 4G and 4GX expansions across the country. The 70+ holiday hotspot locations covered in the program have received an average 4G capacity uplift of more than 35 percent including a boost in 4GX capacity at over 60 of the towns in the program.

The Holiday Hotspots program has contributed to us delivering the mobile network without equal. With two thirds of our sites now 4G enabled, we are providing 4G coverage to 96% of the population. There are more than 8.1 million 4G devices on our network, including 3.6million 4GX handsets, 850,000 of which are capable of speeds greater than 300Mbps (Cat 6 or higher).

Additionally, you can also access free Wi-Fi this summer on Telstra Air. Mobile only customers on eligible pre-paid and post-paid plans can join the Telstra Air Network for the first time and enjoy unlimited free Wi-Fi until 30 June 2016.

The Telstra Air Network comprises Telstra Wi-Fi hotspots at thousands of selected pink payphone sites and retail stores, as well as hotspots created by our Telstra Air members, known as ‘homespots’.

While our mobile network upgrade work will assist in managing holiday period demand, just as the parking lot at the supermarket gets full during peak times, if everyone tries to make a call or use data at the same time it may be hard for everyone to connect. These peak times are generally around lunchtime and early evening.

All in all, we hope you enjoy the summer and stay connected on Telstra’s Mobile Network Without Equal.

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Telstra tests its game-changing LTE-Broadcast technology at the NRL Grand Final

Telstra News

Posted on October 4, 2015

4 min read

This time of year is always an exciting one, but this weekend is particularly nail biting for me.  Hailing from Brisbane, I am already excited about the possibility of the Broncos taking out the NRL Grand Final, but to top it off this year we are also running a trial of LTE-Broadcast (LTE-B) in the Telstra Connected Lounge at ANZ Stadium.

This is another showcase of LTE-B at a major event, following the world first stadium demonstration at the T20 International Cricket Match at the MCG in February 2014, the Spring Racing Carnival in Melbourne in November 2014, and the V8 Supercars at Winton earlier this year. So, in case you’ve forgotten what LTE-B is, put simply it is the future of mobile content and will change the way customers experience live sporting events – or any big events for that matter.

Guests in the Telstra Connected Lounge tonight will be able to access three streams of dedicated content from Channel 9 that will be delivered to a series of LTE-B enabled smartphones through an app, allowing them to browse between live commentary, instant replays and stats of the match as it plays out before them.

Not only does this have the potential to be a game-changing technology to take sporting events to the next level (especially if you’re sitting in the nose bleed section!), it also important from a network perspective as it will allow carriers like Telstra to efficiently manage network traffic.

With demand for mobile data continuing to surge, the network experience can sometimes suffer when tens of thousands of people descend into one place, such as ANZ Stadium, and all try to access the internet at the same time.

LTE-B provides the opportunity to deliver in-demand or popular content using one single stream of data, as opposed to each individual user downloading their own stream of data. This will then free up the network to deal with general use and allow us to continue to deliver a world-class mobile service to our customers.

Stay tuned as more smartphones become LTE-B enabled and enter the market, and we work towards making this capability commercially available in the next six to 12 months.

What sort of content would you want instant access to during a live sporting match or event?

Thanks to our LTE-B partners for helping bring this demonstration to life:

  • Channel Nine (Live Broadcast Footage)
  • Expway (eMBMS Middleware Provider)
  • Intellicore (Application Developer)
  • EVS (Broadcast Video Production – replays & multiple camera angles)
  • Ericsson (eMBMS)
  • Samsung (Devices)

 

What is LTE-B?
LTE-Broadcast (LTE-B) is a new service that allows Telstra to send a single content stream to multiple handsets (i.e. one to many), where previously this required individual content streams to be sent to each individual handset (i.e. one to one).

How does LTE-B enhance my mobile video experience?

This technology enables Telstra and content partners to create and deliver feature rich and HD mobile video experiences more efficiently to our customers and event patrons. For the NRL Grand Final, we are introducing feature rich experiences that provide control for customers, and full HD content, faster than streaming.

When will LTE-B be available for consumers and how much will Telstra charge consumers to use it?

We’re working to make LTE-B technology available for our customers with our existing sports properties, e.g. AFL and NRL content by the start of the 2016 footy season. Pricing and data usage details are still being finalised and will be confirmed closer to commercial launch.

Can LTE-B only be used in stadiums? Where else could customers benefit from LTE-B being rolled out?

Initially Telstra’s LTE-B capabilities will be available on LTE-B capable devices in some 4G areas of the Telstra mobile network. Telstra LTE-B will eventually be available for LTE-B capable devices wherever our customers can access 4G coverage on the Telstra mobile network.

 

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Holiday hotspots: our mobile network has your summer covered

Network

Posted on December 17, 2014

2 min read

It is around this time of year where the focus shifts from work and school to summer holidays somewhere along the vast Australian coast line. And if network traffic is anything to go by, people are packing their smartphones and tablets along with their beach towels.

Looking back on network traffic trends from previous years, we can see that almost 95 per cent of Australia’s popular holiday destinations* are located on the coast, with place like Lorne in Victoria, Robe in South Australia, Bateman’s Bay in NSW, Surfers Paradise in Queensland and Dunsborough in Western Australia experiencing a dramatic increase in network traffic last year. (more…)

Tags: Network,

It’s the network that makes it great

Riding the rails and staying connected

A man enjoying 4G coverage on the ski fields

4G coverage on the ski fields