Ozemail announces wireless broadband date

The official launch of Unwired's wireless broadband service today has prompted Ozemail to break its silence about its deal with rival broadband provider, Personal Broadband Australia. Ozemail marketing executive Phil Dobbie said the ISP tentatively expected to launch a residential wireless broadband service carrying its brand near the end of September.

The official launch of Unwired's wireless broadband service today has prompted Ozemail to break its silence about its deal with rival broadband provider, Personal Broadband Australia.

Ozemail marketing executive Phil Dobbie said the ISP tentatively expected to launch a residential wireless broadband service carrying its brand near the end of September.

Dobbies said that there might be some "fluidity" round the date as the ISP still needed to ensure that it could meet customer demand for the service at launch.

He conceded that the announcement was a response to rival Unwired's launch in Sydney today which was attended by the new federal ICT minister, Helen Coonan.

Ozemail said it wanted to remind the market that it would provide an alternative wireless broadband offering in the consumer space.

However, Ozemail is still keeping its cards close to its chest when it comes to discussing pricing.

Unwired's entry level offering for its service is priced at AU$34.95 per month for a 256/64Kbps connection with a 300MB download allowance. Its premium service is priced at AU$119.95 per month, offers a 1024/256Kbps connection with a 10GB download allowance.

Dobbie said that Ozemail's pricing for its service would "compare favourably" with those consumers had come to expect for conventional DSL access, which has recently fallen to around AU$20 for an entry level service.

One analyst present at Unwired's briefing today said the ISP needed to reduce its pricing by about AU$10 in order to be considered a contender in the mass market space.

Unwired early this week signed a distribution deal with Harvey-Norman, to sell its service throughout the retailer's Sydney stores.

Unwired CEO, David Spence, said the service would appeal to students and other consumers who moved frequently or were reluctant to pay for a residential line.

Unwired today said it expected 20 percent of the population in the developed world to use wireless Internet access in some form by the year 2010.

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