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Faster speeds for Vodafone customers as telco implements new tech

By Shannon Williams
Wed 21 Oct 2015
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Vodafone has implemented new technology that delivers a significant increase in 4G download speeds.

The telecommunications firm has rolled out Carrier Aggregation across 72 sites around New Zealand. The CA technology allows different bands of radio spectrum to be paired at mobile cell sites across the country. 

According to the company, early testing has shown the technology delivers a significant increase in download speeds for 4G users – average speed increases of up to 56% in some locations.

"It’s a lot like adding extra lanes to a motorway, enabling a smoother ride and more customers to take advantage of high-speed data at the same time," explains Tony Baird, Vodafone's technology director.

Upgrades have been completed at several sites in Auckland, as well as Cambridge, Kerikeri, Napier, and Blenheim.  More locations are planned for 2016.

"With more than 40% of Vodafone customers now using 4G, data consumption on our 4G network has doubled in the last six months – with video streaming accounting for over 35% of mobile data traffic,” he says.

“These trends are set to continue and through Carrier Aggregation, we can continue to provide faster data speeds to support the future needs of Kiwis.”

New Zealand was last month named as having the world's fastest 4G in an international survey by OpenSignal. Carrier Aggregation - an early building block towards 5G - will further enhance Vodafone's 4G performance, as the combined spectrums provide a more consistent user experience when moving in and outdoors.

Baird says Carrier Aggregation is well-suited to Vodafone's 4G spectrum bands – 700 MHz, 1800 MHz and 2600 MHz. Low frequency 700 MHz spectrum has a large footprint, best-placed to deliver coverage to rural areas. 1800 MHz and 2600 MHz spectrum cater to smaller, denser geographical areas - like inner-city and suburban spots.

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