Telecommunications company, Telstra, has activated its 60th mobile base station under the Federal Government’s Mobile Black Spot Programme, giving thousands more Australians access to high speed Telstra mobile services.
Woolomin in New South Wales is now has 3G and 4G mobile coverage with base station number 60 going on air in the area. The company makes the announcement 60 weeks since the first round of locations were announced.
The Mobile Black Spot Programme involves investment of more than $340 million in regional Australia, with $165 million from Telstra, $94.8 million from the Federal Government and millions in targeted additional funding from state and local governments.
Under the first round of the programme, Telstra is building 429 3G and 4G mobile base stations over three years that will extend coverage to more than 400 communities across the nation.
In addition, Telstra is rolling out up to 250 4G small cells to a number of rural and regional communities, providing high speed mobile internet to locals.
Telstra Group Managing Director, Networks, Mike Wright, said the number of Telstra mobile base stations is expected to surpass 100 by the end of the programme’s first year.
Wright added that the depth and scale of the programme was delivering real benefits to communities across Australia.
“Whether it’s farmers working in the field, schools bringing the latest technology to their students, or families talking on their mobiles at home, the response from these communities has been overwhelmingly positive,” Wright said.
“Communities that previously had little to no mobile reception can now access Australia’s leading mobile network, allowing them to connect with family, friends and clients as well as watch video on the go and run their businesses more effectively over fast 4G mobile broadband.”
According to Wright, this includes places like Ajana in Western Australia, Youngvale in Victoria, Quilpe in Queensland and now Woolomin in New South Wales.
This has also resulted in more than 20,000 square kilometres of new and improved mobile coverage since the start of the programme.
“We are proud to be involved in a programme that is expanding coverage even further," he added.
"This is another example of Telstra’s ability to work with governments at all levels to deliver innovative programmes that expand mobile services to regional and rural Australia.
“Telstra’s history of investing in rural and regional Australia means our mobile network already covers more than 2.4 million square kilometres, bringing the benefits of high speed mobile connectivity to hundreds of thousands of Australians not served by any other carrier."
Wright said Telstra is committed to investing further to connect more Australians with the latest in mobile technology.
Deputy prime minister, Barnaby Joyce, said Telstra’s milestone improves mobile reception for regional communities across Australia.
“As I travel rural and regional areas, locals tell me connectivity is one of their top issues so this is an important step forward for the regions," he added.
"Whether it’s in the city or the country, mobile coverage is vital to people who are increasingly reliant on mobile devices to conduct business, manage farms and keep in touch."