Australia NBN Co – established by the Australian Government to design, build and operate the national broadband network – has appointed Ericsson to build and operate a 2.3 GHz fixed-wireless broadband network based on LTE technology. It will serve rural Australia with download speeds of up to 12 Mbps and upload speeds reaching 1 Mbps, representing a significant improvement compared to existing broadband services.

The decision is in line with the Australian Government's vision to develop a high-speed broadband network that is available to the whole population and part of a $38 billion national infrastructure investment. Under the ten-year agreement, Ericsson will provide the LTE network, including radio access, core and transmission as well as related services. Products in the company's portfolio also include the RBS6000 multi-standard radio base station, transmission and Evolved Packet Core solutions.

As part of the agreement, Ericsson will design, build, operate and maintain NBN Co's network end-to-end, including business support systems. This includes service activation, management and assurance as well as network performance and capacity management. The company will also provide a wide range of services such as construction, installation, commissioning and learning services. Network operations will transfer from Ericsson to NBN Co after the initial agreement with Ericsson is completed.

Kevin Brown, acting CEO, NBN, said, "NBN Co will be offering rural and regional Australians the latest 4G wireless technologies as part of its fixed-wireless service. Fixed wireless will allow us to plan a network for a more predictable number of users in a given area. This gives us greater control over speed and quality of service."

Sam Saba, head of Ericsson in Australia, added, "As the leading 4G technology, LTE has global momentum and its ecosystem is expanding rapidly. Thanks to our services, network offering and support for the widest range of bandwidths and frequency spectrums, we are able to facilitate the efficient delivery of LTE-based broadband services to communities that are usually disadvantaged because of their remote location."