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WIRELESS & NETWORKING / INDUSTRY

Machine 2 Machines', LTE Broadcasts, 100M Mobiles: Telstra's POA

By Oonagh Reidy | Monday | 28/10/2013

Mobile revenues to treble, as connected devices to hit 100m

Telstra CEO spruiks the mobile market, predicting 100 million 'connected' mobiles over the next 6-7 years. This would mean four for every person, at current population levels. 

"There's more and more devices coming on to all our networks," Telstra CEO David Thodey told investors last week. 

There's currently just over 30 million mobile devices on Telstra's mobile network. 

"There is no question in my mind that will go to 100 million within the next five, six, seven years." 

 "That's a completely different sort of architecture for the network." 

The demand for bandwidth is also changing as consumers use Internet connected devices, in "many, many different ways" and consume more content, he said. 

Telstra has invested $1.2 bn in its mobile network this year, embracing new technologies including 'carrier aggregation', which allocates unused 3G spectrum for 4G for faster data speeds, LTE-Broadcast live which delivers content to large number of users simultaneously - like a new operating software upgrade, or live feed.  

4G LTE is driving mobile appetites - Telstra has sold 3.2 m 4G devices to date, and connects 25,000 new 4G users a week, whether its on smartphones, tablets or mobile broadband devices. 

By September 30, Telstra had 15.3 million mobile customers, adding 243,000 new customers in the first quarter. 

"The [overall] business is continuing to tick over well", Telstra's CEO assured investors. 

 Fixed broadband users rose to 2.8 million, as are broadband bundles. 

 But consumer behaviour is changing, Thodey warned. 

"And it doesn't matter if you're in telco land or you're in retail, consumers are more demanding, they're more discerning,"

"The way people are interacting, human to machines is changing in a way I've never seen happen before.

"You see it in some new products like Siri on the iPhone, but if you go to Google now, these are things that are getting us our artificial intelligence and predictive behaviour. 

"Why it's important is it suddenly opens up a whole raft of new innovative ways to interact in different industries." 

Australia's biggest telco today announced it has hit a milestone - its Machine-to Machine (M2M) business recorded one million services in operation, making it the largest M2M provider in the country.   

The M2M portfolio is a vital part of Telstra's growth strategy as it continues to diversify, says Mike Cihra Telstra's Director of M2M. 

Telstra is the first mobile carrier in the world to trial LTE-Broadcast live on a commercial network, it announced today. 

Last week, the telco announced a major management shakeup and refined strategy as traditional revenues streams dry up, while new ones including digital media, networked services and the cloud, take hold. 

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