The NBN is now helping remove mobile blackspots, with Vodafone announcing today that it has hooked up a NSW town as the first site to receive new 4G mobile coverage through the national network.
Molong, a town near Orange in the state’s central west, now has 155 square kilometres of new 4G mobile coverage, which includes more than 860 homes and the Mitchell Highway corridor.
Molong is the first NBN Cell Site Access Service agreement to commercially go live. Vodafone installed its mobile antennas on NBN’s wireless towers, with the voice and data transmitted back through NBN’s transit network to the interconnection hub in Dubbo.
NBN chief customer officer John Simon said that wholesale supply agreements with mobile providers such as Vodafone deliver “new value for our shareholders and the taxpayer” by generating extra revenue off existing infrastructure.
“This is genuinely exciting news for the community of Molong and for NBN,” he said. “The good thing about this is not just that we are helping to deliver a new service for end-users but also that we offering customers new products to help them extend their portfolio and spread their networks.”
Vodafone worked on the Molong site through the federal government’s Mobile Black Spot Program, which invests the capital required to eliminate poor mobile coverage in rural areas.
“By working with government and participating in the Mobile Black Spots Program, we are seeking to expand access to mobile coverage for regional Australians to help deliver all of the economic and social benefits it enables,” said Vodafone chief executive Inaki Berroeta.