Telstra upgrades transmission network to 100Gbps minimum

Telco touts the abilities of its software-defined network to automatically handle faults.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor

Telstra has announced it has completed a transmission network upgrade that sees links with minimum speeds of 100Gbps connected to all inter-capital paths and NBN points of interconnect.

The telco said the network is now 11 times faster than before, and touted additional functionality thanks to the use of software-defined networking.

"The new infrastructure provides enormous improvements to the reliability of our networks; for example, we recently introduced a capability into our optical network which now automates the rebuild and migration of services to another path when we experience a network fault such as a fibre break," Telstra Transport IP Core and Edge Engineering Executive Chris Meissner said.

"With the meshed nature of the new optical network, we are able to quickly reconfigure the network to stand up new routing paths within hours to reduce the overall risk of faults -- this is something that previously would have taken days."

Looking ahead, Meissner said Telstra would soon be able to reconfigure the network "within minutes" of a disruption, and enterprise customers would have the enabling of optic wave services reduced from days and weeks to hours.

See: Telstra2022: Key takeaways from Telstra's new strategy

The transmission upgrade forms part of the telco's Telstra2022 strategy.

Last week Telstra released its long-awaited collection of mobile data plans.

The telco is now offering four tiers of mobile phone connectivity consisting of 15GB, 60GB, 100GB, and 150GB each month for AU$50, AU$60, AU$80, and AU$100, respectively.

Once users exceed their data quota, speeds will be slowed to 1.5Mbps. Users will not be able to use data packs like they have in the past, as users who need extra bandwidth will need to jump up to the higher tier and will be unable to purchase extra data.

Telstra said it sees very few people using more than 150GB a month on its network.

Purchasing a device from the telco is now separate from the mobile plan, with customers able to pay off a phone over a period of up to three years.

The telco said it has reduced its overall number of mainstream plans, covering fixed and mobile access, from 1800 to approximately 20.

In June last year, Telstra announced it would be shedding 8,000 jobs in total as part of its Telstra2022 plans, which include the removal of 25 percent of executive and middle management roles.

The 8,000 jobs number consists of 9,500 job cuts and 1,500 new roles created mostly in software engineering and cybersecurity.

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