Telstra will launch a new mobile device enabling the doubling of data speeds on the NextG network later this year.
Telstra CEO David Thodey said 100 regional towns would benefit from the new modem when it became available.
Customers using the new device, the Telstra Ultimate USB, will be able to download files or surf the internet up to twice as fast as those using the next-fastest 3G modem currently available.
Mr Thodey made the announcement in a speech to community leaders in Albury to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Telstra Country Wide, which was launched in June 2000.
“Telstra will make this new technology available in 100 selected regional towns and cities at the same time as many capital cities, underlining our commitment to provide the best technology to Australians no matter where they live,” Mr Thodey said.
“Telstra has been investing in regional and rural Australia for more than 100 years, including through Telstra Country Wide for the past 10 years, to improve the quality of life for people living and working in regional and rural Australia.
“The first decade of Telstra Country Wide is just the beginning.
“Telstra is committed to continuing its investment in regional and rural Australia so we can provide local consumers, businesses, governments, schools and health services with the same leading-edge services that are available elsewhere in Australia.”
Mr Thodey said since the inception of Telstra Country Wide 10 years ago Telstra’s mobile phone coverage had expanded from about 800,000 to more than two million square kilometres, and now covered more than 99 per cent of the population.
“Internet access speeds have increased from dial-up rates of a few 10s of kilobits per second to be typically 550kbps to 8Mbps in selected regional areas,” he said.