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C&W Optus aims to deliver practical technology

With more than four million customers in its purse strings, Cable Wireless Optus has served Australia faithfully in delivering integrated communications. Offering a broad range of communication services, they include mobile, national and long distance services and various telephony and network services, Director for Mobile Internet & Data Finola Thompson shares C&W Optus' optimism that the future of wireless looks bright indeed.

Finola Thompson With more than four million customers in its purse strings, Cable Wireless Optus has served Australia faithfully in delivering integrated communications. Offering a broad range of communication services, they include mobile, national and long distance services and various telephony and network services, Director for Mobile Internet & Data Finola Thompson shares C&W Optus' optimism that the future of wireless looks bright indeed.

What is Cable & Wireless Optus' current position in Australia?
In Australia, Optus is at the leading edge of innovation in mobile technology and we have a strong reputation for delivering workable and practical technology to Australian business and consumers. We believe in the mobile data future so we have been putting in place all the appropriate technologies to help deliver choice to our customers.

For example, we were the first carrier in Australia to deliver WAP services to our customers. We were the first carrier in Australia to have a fully functional GPRS network and now we are planning to deliver Australia's first 3G network.

Most network operators are concentrating on rolling out wireless services such as location-based services and mobile commerce. What are Optus' plans in this area?
At Optus we prefer to focus on a full range of mobile data services because different consumers will have different needs. So while individual consumers will find location-based services useful to help them find the nearest bank or restuarant, business consumers are more likely to be interested in mobilising their sales forces, through especially tailored software solutions, to do business on the road or at the customer's premises.

What's the outlook for Cable & Wireless Optus in the wireless mobile arena?

We are confident and very positive about the future potential of this market and we expect that 25 per cent of our mobile revenue will be from data services by 2005.

Tell us about some of the products or services that we can expect in the near future.
We already have a wide range of wireless data services such as SMS based information services and WAP services out in the market and these are doing very well. We are also continuing to update and add new content everyday.

On the GPRS side of things we are doing some very exciting thing by working with our corporate customers on developing and integrating wireless solutions which suit their particular business needs. In addition, we will be rolling out a series a wireless office products over the next twelve months which will help customers mobilise their business.

How does Australia compare with the mobile take-up rates in the rest of the world?

Australians are great lovers of technology and very quick to take advantage of new innovation. Over 53 per cent of the population has a mobile phone and one in three of them has an Optus mobile phone.

Our mobile network is state-of-the-art and while Australia is a large country in geographic terms, our mobile network covers over 94 per cent of the population. So we are confident that Optus is well positioned to continue to be a very success business in serving the needs of our customers and our shareholders.

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