Regulatory Hassles Slow 3G Access At Airports

We've reflected in the past on why 3G Internet connectivity is so poor at airports. Capital city airports are amongst the first locations getting access to Telstra's new LTE network, so at the launch I figured it was worth asking if airports posed particular technical restrictions.

Picture by Michael Coghlan

Anthony Goonan, director of network and commercial planning for Telstra Operations, told us that there was nothing specific about airport locations that make them harder to service from a technical perspective (so no rules which restrict 3G range because of airport comms requirements). However, the complex processes involved in any kind of building or construction work do play a role, he said:

The main issue is just getting permission and access to make the changes, and the need to take the service offline while you do it. It's just a logistics matter.

We'll be doing some airport LTE testing later this week to see if the promise of improved coverage has been realised; I certainly hope so.


    I actually coughed up the $5 an Hour at Perth Airport this week because the 3G was so slow.

    Train stations here in Melbourne are shite as well. There's no Optus 3G coverage in the City Loop stations, they can provide voice (and 2G data) coverage, but not 3G.

      Next-G works just great in the loop stations. Not surprised so far behind.

        Yeah not really surprised that Next-G works fine. You'd think that Optus would at least TRY and get some coverage, even if slow, right now there's nothing.

    you'd think we'd be able to have continuous 3G coverage through the loop by now

    Melbourne airport is so bad for NextG - been like that for months - i was getting 6kbps this week. Awesome. I was back to the early 90's and GPRS! Its about the only place Vodafone is vastly better for data speed.

    I'm with Telstra and the coverage is fine at the airport and train stations. In the loop stations, my iPhone achieves at least 4 bars of coverage. At the airport I can use the facebook app easily, my last flight was to Singapore on a Qantas A380 and I uploaded a picture of the plane with no fuss.

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now