RealTime IT News

Austar Plans Two-way Satellite Broadband Network

[Sydney, AUSTRALIA] Austar United Communications and ADC plan to deploy a MMDS broadband wireless system with two-way transmission facilities that will provide high-speed Internet and telephony services to 60 Australian towns and cities. Initial deployment of the system is planned for late 2000 with a commercial launch planned for the first quarter of 2001.

Until now, satellite Internet access in Australia has provided a broadband downlink, with a narrowband uplink, tying up the customer's phone line for the return path. Equipment supplied by ADC, including radio frequency data headends and customer premises equipment for subscribers, will enable customers of Austar's service to both upload and download data and voice at high speeds, supporting VoIP telephony services.

The ADC equipment will use the 2.3 - 2.4 GHz band currently employed by Austar for analog pay TV and the one-way, broadband Internet service, chello. An IP backbone infrastructure will be supplied by Austar's other partner, Cisco Systems.

"Austar is committed to the goal of bringing advanced data and voice services to millions of Australians who are underserved by existing infrastructure," said Dana Strong, managing director of AUSTAR United Broadband. "This technology will enable us to overcome the restrictions of the copper network," she added.