Optus to finish HFC upgrade mid-year

Optus to finish HFC upgrade mid-year

Summary: The nation's number two telco Optus today said it was on schedule to upgrade the speed of its hybrid fibre coaxial (HFC) cable network in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to 100Mbps by mid-2010.

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TOPICS: Broadband, Telcos, Optus, NBN
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The nation's number two telco Optus today said it was on schedule to upgrade the speed of its hybrid fibre coaxial (HFC) cable network in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to 100Mbps by mid-2010.

The news came as part of the management discussion included with Optus' financial results for the third quarter of its financial year, ended 31 December 2009.

The speed upgrade — which Optus first flagged on 20 November — will put Optus neck and neck with Telstra's cable network, which is also in the process of being upgraded.

The upgrade, which involves pushing the network to the DoCSIS 3.0 standard, will also put Optus' cable network on par with the planned speeds of the National Broadband Network roll-out. However, the NBN will not be available to retail customers for several years.

Optus' operating revenue grew 4.8 per cent in the quarter to $2.3 billion, while revenue from mobile services grew 11 per cent year on year. The company said mobile growth was led by "robust customer acquisitions and increased penetration of smartphones". Optus is believed to have taken a solid share of the Australian market for Apple iPhones.

The company added 164,000 net post-paid mobile services in the quarter, with total post-paid subscribers growing to 4 million. Total 3G customers increased by 8.7 per cent from last quarter to 3.34 million. This included 799,000 wireless broadband customers.

The company's Business and Wholesale Fixed segments saw declining revenue of 2.9 per cent year on year, impacted by what the telco said was "weaker corporate telecom spending and lower wholesale international voice revenue".

"Optus continues to deliver impressive results in a competitive market with five consecutive quarters of double digit mobile service revenue growth," Optus chief executive Paul O'Sullivan said in a statement. "The record-breaking increase in new mobile post-paid customers reflects confidence in Optus as a leading provider of mobile and wireless broadband solutions."

Topics: Broadband, Telcos, Optus, NBN

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