Optus claims a world first - in Newcastle

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Optus claims a world first - in Newcastle

4G speeds are be impressive, but maybe you're still not satisfied. How does an actual download speed of 317Mbps sound?

Optus has claimed a world first for its deployment of 3x Carrier Aggregation (3x CA) using commercial software and devices. We won't go into the details which are very... signal processy... but 3x CA basically uses three 'channels' to talk to one device for greater bandwidth - a theoretical maximum of 450Mbps.

Optus's 3x CA service is initially available in the Newcastle (NSW) suburbs of Lambton, Mayfield and Mayfield West.

It will spread to the Melbourne CBD in early September, to the Sydney CBD in early 2016, and then the Brisbane and Adelaide CBDs "from mid-2016."

3x CA only works with category 9 smartphones such as the recently announced Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+ and Samsung Galaxy Note 5.

Optus says it achieved 317Mbps in Newcastle. Around 200Mbps seems to be a more realistic speed once the general public starts using the service.

Telstra said it activated its Category 9 service in selected areas in May 2015.

The 'small print' in Optus's claim to be first seems to be that it is using 1x FDD + 2x TDD technology using the 2300 and 1800MHz frequencies, while Telstra combines three separate frequencies (700MHz, 1800MHz and 2600MHz).

In addition to the two new Samsung phones, Telstra has said it will offer a Netgear mobile broadband Wi-Fi device in the next couple of months.

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