Optus is set to invite more customers to connect to its 5G precursor fixed wireless service after getting the first crop of users to achieve average speeds of 100Mbps.
The telco said today that “select customers in Bonnyrigg and Minchinbury in Sydney’s west, Niagara Park on the NSW Central Coast, Cook in the ACT and Kenmore outside of Brisbane” would be offered a connection by the end of the month.
These were users that had applied to connect as part of an expression-of-interest campaign launched in January.
Optus Networks managing director Dennis Wong said in a statement that the first commercial service on the new wireless network - in Glendenning in Sydney’s west - “had already achieved peak download speeds of 295Mbps and an average download speed of 100Mbps.”
“Our peak download speed achieved at our launch in the ACT in January demonstrated download speeds of 170Mbps, so a 50 percent increase in peak speeds in just a few months shows the rapid evolution and advancement of the 5G ecosystem,” Wong said.
Optus does not guarantee the 100Mbps speeds, but does set an acceptable baseline at 50Mbps.
Optus is currently testing five devices to work on the network “including two mobile handsets and three CPEs (customer premise equipment) or home hubs.”
Wong said that despite 5G’s infancy as a technology, Optus was “already gaining valuable insights” in how to deploy it.
“The technology has matured rapidly over the last few months with more devices being 5G enabled and we are getting a better understanding of how to best tune the technology to improve performance,” he said.
“We are also gaining valuable insights around how to adjust our network and its technical features to support interoperability of multiple devices – meaning that a variety of devices from different manufacturers will work on different vendor network hardware.”
Optus unveiled plans to offer high-speed fixed wireless services in key metro areas based on 5G technology back in February.
The service could prove an attractive alternative to signing up with the National Broadband Network, given it costs $70 a month for unlimited data use.
NBN Co has raised its wholesale prices in recent years, making some services uneconomical in comparison to fixed and cellular wireless services.