FutureFive NZ - Telecom to trial LTE this year

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Telecom to trial LTE this year

Telecom has announced it will go ahead with trials of Long Term Evolution (LTE) mobile technology, also known as 4G, later this year, despite uncertainty over the 700mhz spectrum, which is critical to the technology’s deployment.


Outgoing CEO Paul Reynolds says the company is committed to evolving its XT network ‘with a particular focus on accommodating the explosive growth in mobile data and continued rise of smartdevices’.


"We will progressively adopt 4G network capability, starting with a customer trial later this year using LTE technology,” Reynolds says in a statement issued this morning.


"The Ministry of Economic Development is yet to announce its detailed plans for the auction of 700MHz spectrum, which will be important for widespread, cost effective 4G deployment. But Telecom nevertheless intends to continue on and build real-world experience of 4G operations through this trial.”


The 700MHz spectrum will be freed up with the move to digital television, due to take place by December next year. 


The Ministry of Economic Development has been conducting a review into how to auction off the spectrum without giving any of the telcos an unfair advantage in the race to establish an LTE service. 


Telecom is aiming to have its trial up and running before the end of 2012. 

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