Telstra and Ericsson provide connectivity boost to King Island

Tuesday, 02 April, 2024

Telstra and Ericsson provide connectivity boost to King Island

Telstra and Ericsson have completed a major upgrade to King Island’s mobile network infrastructure, announcing a close to 10-fold capacity boost for the island’s community thanks to an over-water microwave telecommunications link with a throughput capacity of 9.8 Gbps with 99.99% availability.

The upgrade sees a 116 km microwave link deployed across the Bass Strait from the Australian mainland to King Island’s Cape Wickham — believed to be the longest over-water link of its kind in Telstra’s national mobile network, and the longest 10 Gbps microwave link in the world. The project was funded through a $9.8 million investment by the Australian Government, Telstra, the Tasmanian Government and King Island Council, which was announced in 2021 to deliver valuable infrastructure to rural and regional communities.

The upgrade was made possible with the deployment of Ericsson’s MINI-LINK 6200 long-haul microwave technology, providing essential backhaul support for the deployment of Ericsson 5G mobile on the island, helping Telstra expand its network and deliver better connectivity for regional Australia. The King Island MINI-LINK 6200 microwave link operates using 16 channels in the 6 GHz band to achieve a peak throughput of 9.8 Gbps — a significant upgrade from the previous link providing ~1 Gbps, making it ideal for delivering backhaul for high-performance 4G and 5G mobile broadband networks. Ericsson’s radio link bonding technology with quality of service meanwhile provides ongoing performance in all environmental conditions.

The deployment is set to transform connectivity on King Island, with local consumers and small business customers benefiting from increased mobile coverage, efficiency, capacity and data speeds, along with greater network resilience. This means King Island residents now have access to network capacity and reliability that is similar to that enjoyed by metro customers. Telstra now plans to use Ericsson’s MINI-LINK 6200 long-haul microwave solution to extend its mobile coverage in other remote areas.

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