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Timeline: Telstra's path from CDMA to Next G

It's been a long road to the closure of Telstra's CDMA network. ZDNet.com.au takes a look back at how it all happened.
Written by Jo Best, Contributor

It's been a long road to the closure of Telstra's CDMA network. ZDNet.com.au takes a look back at how it all happened.

  • September 2004
    Telstra connects the one millionth customer to its CDMA network.
  • November 2005
    Telstra's strategic review heralds the advent of a 3G rollout set to replace the old CDMA one. Telstra boss Sol Trujillo says the CDMA network will remain in place until 3G has "the same or better coverage and services". The plans are not welcomed by rivals, who called for the network to be sold, rather than decommissioned.
  • February 2006
    Work begins on the construction of what is to become Telstra's Next G network.
  • February 2006
    Communications Minister Helen Coonan reassures bush users, not for the last time, that they won't be disadvantaged by the switch to Next G.
  • February 2007
    After completing an audit of CDMA coverage, Coonan warns the government will delay the network's closure if Next G doesn't provide equivalent services and coverage.
  • June 2007
    Telstra promises, not for the last time, that there will be no delays to its plan to shut off the CDMA network in January 2008.
  • July 2007
    Telstra completes its Next G rollout.
  • August 2007
    The government introduces a draft guideline to legally prevent the closure of CDMA until Next G provides equal or better coverage. Telstra subsequently starts court proceedings accusing Coonan of "hamper[ing] the Next G network broadband deployment by prejudging the outcome of her consultation with Telstra on the draft CDMA licence condition".
  • August 2007
    Next G notches up more users than CDMA for the first time.
  • October 2007
    The government begins its audits of Next G coverage to determine if it meets the government's standards to allow a switch-off.
  • November 2007
    Ahead of the election, Coonan tells ZDNet.com.au Next G has "enormous problems" compared to CDMA.
  • January 2008
    New Communications Minister Stephen Conroy rules that Telstra cannot close CDMA at the end of January as planned, citing concerns including some customers receiving inappropriate handsets.
  • January 2008
    Telstra sets about rectifying the issues set out by the Minister, opening up a hotline for users with technical difficulties.
  • April 2008
    Conroy officially gives Telstra permission to close CDMA on 28 April.
  • 28 April
    The CDMA network goes dark.
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