Telstra sends Blackberry to the bush

Telstra has expanded its BlackBerry mobile e-mail coverage to regional areas with today's launch of the service on the telecommunications heavyweight's CDMA network.BlackBerry on CDMA is a wireless service that automatically delivers messages to a handheld device without prompting or downloading.

Telstra has expanded its BlackBerry mobile e-mail coverage to regional areas with today's launch of the service on the telecommunications heavyweight's CDMA network.

BlackBerry on CDMA is a wireless service that automatically delivers messages to a handheld device without prompting or downloading. The integrated device delivers multiple capabilities such as phone, company data, Internet browsing, SMS, calendar and personal organiser features.

The carrier said availability of BlackBerry on the CDMA network was expected to give country-based businesses an additional reason to take up the tool for people on the move.

The service was launched today in Longreach by the Minister for Communications, Information and the Arts, Senator Helen Coonan, and the chairman of Telstra, Donald McGauchie, during their tour of Central Queensland.

"With the release of technologies such as BlackBerry on Telstra's CDMA network, we are starting to see the ongoing value of this investment, and how technology is evolving to provide rural and regional Australians with increasingly better service," Coonan said.

Telstra Country Wide group managing director, Doug Campbell said the new offering is a result of the company's AU$31 million investment last year for the upgrade of the entire CDMA network.

Campbell is expecting the Blackberry availability to be a "boon for rural business productivity as anyone in a CDMA coverage area will be able to stay in touch with their home or office via e-mail wherever they are."

He added that Telstra customer trials of the service over CDMA network revealed positive results, with customers saying they experienced improved productivity by using Blackberry.