Competition hots up in Australia as networks migrate to HSPA
WCDMA and HSPA connections to overtake GSM during H1 2009
Mobile broadband accounted for 14% of Telstra’s HSPA connections and 17% of its HSPA net additions in the second quarter but take-up remains slow. This is likely due to the conservative pricing of its various tariffs; Telstra’s mobile broadband works out nearly twice as expensive as rival offerings. Hutchison, Optus and Vodafone all offer 5 to 6 GB of usage for A$40 - A$50 while Telstra’s A$59 per month deal offers only 1 GB – a deal available on Vodafone for just A$20 per month. All Australia’s operators have sought to lower mobile broadband prices and raise usage limits as competition in the market has increased. But with many more HSPA subscribers than its rivals, impressive coverage and a first-to-market advantage, Telstra is still leading the way in migrating Australian subscribers onto the new high-speed networks. At the current pace of migration, we forecast that combined WCDMA and HSPA connections in Australia will overtake GSM during the first half of 2009.