60 new projects are being funded by Telstra to improve mobile reception in northern NSW.
60 new projects are being funded by Telstra to improve mobile reception in northern NSW.

$25 million fix for the region's mobile coverage

AN INVESTMENT of $25 million by Telstra will result in better mobile reception across the Northern Rivers.

Areas to receive improved services include The Channon, Ettrick and Possum Creek.

Telstra announced more than $25 million of Telstra's own funds was being spent over the financial year 2017/18 on approximately 60 projects, delivering new or improved mobile coverage for communities living, working or travelling in Northern NSW.

The investment will be delivered through capacity and speed upgrades to existing base stations, new small cells for 4G coverage, as well as Telstra's contribution to the Mobile Black Spot Program.

"We know mobile coverage is a key priority for people and businesses in regional and rural areas," Area General Manager Mike Marom said.

"This investment includes eight new projects to upgrade our mobile network in locations such as Tingha and Nowendoc, installation of 15 new black spot towers in locations such as Sherwood, The Channon, Ettrick and Possum Creek, and the installation of 13 new small cells including Ulong, Yetman and Wardell.

"Telstra has a long history of investing in regional Australia, and over the last three years has invested $2.2 billion in its regional mobile network so more Australians can experience a connected world that supports their way of life," Mr Marom said.

Mr Marom said in addition to keeping people connected to the internet and each other when they're out and about, mobile connectivity is also important for small businesses in the area.

"We continually see the benefit mobile coverage brings to farmers, shop owners, doctors and schools in Australia's remote areas.

"From supporting sales workforces in the field to small art galleries being able to take credit card payments for the first time, mobile connectivity is becoming more and more vital to small business growth and stability."

He said network investment not only improved mobile coverage on the road - benefiting business, safety and the community - but also had implications for the future of farming.

"This network investment is also helping extend our Internet of Things (IoT) capabilities, with our Cat M1 IoT coverage now reaching around three million square kilometres, connecting devices and apps to new and innovative technology. This includes a range of things from agriculture apps accessing IoT sensors that let farmers measure the soil moisture of avocado trees to IoT sensor based tracking of plant and equipment parcels in the field and in transit.

"We will continue to expand our network across the country so that all Australians can have access to the latest technology and stay connected to the things they love," Mr Marom said.

Telstra invested around $2.2 billion between FY15-FY17 in delivering mobile services in regional and non-metro areas of Australia including our investment in regional spectrum. This is Telstra only investment and excludes co-contribution from external parties.