Vodafone to light up first NBN Cell Site Access Service in Molong under Mobile Black Spot Program

Vodafone pushes forward with network expansion in regional New South Wales

Vodafone Australia Chief Executive Officer Inaki Berroeta, together with the Federal Member for Calare Andrew Gee, has announced that 4G services1 will be available from Monday in Molong, New South Wales, the first National Broadband Network (NBN) Cell Site Access Service (CSAS) site.

Under the Federal Government’s Mobile Black Spot Program, Vodafone’s network investment in Molong will bring 155 square kilometres of additional mobile phone coverage, including over 860 homes in the region plus along the Mitchell Highway, especially for small business and customers towards Larras Lee, Garra, Amaroo.

Last year, Vodafone also expanded its mobile network in Manildra and Cargo, delivering another 231 square kilometres of improved total coverage to 472 homes in the region.

Vodafone’s new site in Manildra specifically brought mobile coverage along state and national highways, including Orange Road, Kurrajong Road, and the thoroughfare between Boree and Manildra.

Similarly, the Cargo site delivered coverage between Cargo and Orange including towards Canowindra Road, Grenfell Orange Road, Cargo Road, and Davys Plain Road.

Vodafone also built and funded an additional in Cudal to extend coverage between Cargo, Boree, and Toogong, including onto Canowindra Road and The Escorts Road between the three towns.

Vodafone CEO Inaki Berroeta said Vodafone’s new sites are part of the company’s continued network investment to support growing demand for advanced mobile devices and services in the region.

“We are competing vigorously to improve and expand our service in regional Australia, particularly in the Calare electorate,” said Mr Berroeta.

“By working with government and participating in the Mobile Black Spots Program, we are seeking to expand access to mobile coverage for regional Australians to help deliver all of the economic and social benefits it enables.

“More than ever before, customers look to mobile communications to stay in touch with family, friends and business colleagues. Customers in and around Molong, Manildra, Cargo, and Cudal will benefit from enhanced coverage and network performance.”

nbn Chief Customer Officer, John Simon added: “nbn is delighted to be able to leverage our existing fixed-wireless infrastructure to help improve mobile services in regional Australia. By launching our Cell Site Access Service we are also delivering new value for our shareholders and the taxpayer.”

Additional sites to deliver more coverage

In addition, Vodafone plans to switch on another site in Cumnock under the Mobile Black Spot Program before the end of the Q1 2017. It’s expected to deliver an additional 333 square kilometres of coverage between Molong and Cumnock, as well as up to Cundumbul and up towards Garra and Amaroo.

The delivery of the Cumnock site will address some known mobile black spots in the Calare electorate.

Federal Member for Calare Andrew Gee said: “Black spots in Calare have been a source of irritation for quite some time, so it’s great to see them being cleared up under the Coalition Government’s Mobile Black Spot Program.”

“They are an impediment to country business expansion and can be downright dangerous in an emergency, when help is needed fast. It’s vitally important that we keep chipping away at these black spots.”

Minister for Regional Communications Fiona Nash said round one alone of the Federal Government’s Mobile Black Spot Program would deliver 499 mobile phone towers covering some 3,000 coverage black spots across the nation, extending coverage to 26,000 homes and businesses who previously didn’t have it across 165,000 square kilometres.

“I aim to help build the kinds of communities our children and grandchildren either want to stay in or come back to and good telecommunications is a big part of that,” Minister Nash said.

“Being a farmer from central NSW myself, I know how important mobile coverage is and I’m proud the Coalition is delivering it to Molong, Manildra, Cargo, and Cudal, and shortly to Cumnock.”

Risk-free network user trial

To encourage people in Molong, Manildra, Cargo, and Cudal to trial its network, Vodafone is offering new customers a money-back 30 Day Network Satisfaction Guarantee.3

Under the 30 Day Network Satisfaction Guarantee, if a new postpaid customer is not satisfied with Vodafone’s network within the first 30 days, they can cancel their contract, no questions asked. Vodafone will also refund any monthly access fees and monthly handset instalments paid by the customer as long as the equipment and device are returned to a Vodafone store within 10 days of making the claim. The 30 Day Network Satisfaction Guarantee is also available for business customers with up to 9 connections.

In conjunction with the revamped 30 Day Network Satisfaction Guarantee, Vodafone is also offering unlimited data4 for the first month to new customers who sign up to a selected 12 or 24 month phone plan to use within Australia.

Mr Berroeta said the company’s new network guarantee demonstrates that Vodafone is prepared to walk the talk on network satisfaction and ultimately put the power in people’s hands.

“Our new guarantee is an invitation for Australians who may be feeling unsatisfied with their current provider to experience everything Vodafone has to offer,” said Mr Berroeta.

“We have invested significantly in our 4G network in recent years, and Vodafone’s 4G network is performing better than ever. We are proud to offer a guarantee which demonstrates our commitment to being transparent about our network performance. With our new program, people don’t need to take our word for it, they can experience the difference for themselves.”

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Notes to editors:

Vodafone’s interactive regional mobile investment map includes the locations and timings of the 106 sites it is building in regional areas.

1: 4G is available with a compatible 4G device.  To find out where we have 4G, see vodafone.com.au/coverage.

2: If you’ve signed up to any new plan and you don’t love our network within the first 30 days, you’re welcome to cancel by calling 1300551198. You must pay for what you’ve used (incl Mobile Payment Plans) up until your number is fully transferred and device and equipment in original packaging with proof of purchase returned to a Vodafone (not dealer) store within 10 days of your claim. One claim per person. Accessories not refunded. This guarantee does not affect any other rights or remedies you may have under consumer law. Full terms and conditions at vodafone.com.au/guarantee.

3: Personal Use Only. Available until 30/06/17 for new customers signing up to a 12 or 24 month plan (excludes Business Shared Infinite, Business Flex, Red Business Shared & Red Business Grow and upgrades). If you perform a Rate Plan Change during the unlimited data period, your eligibility ceases & additional data fees will apply. Fair Use Policy applies: see www.vodafone.com.au/aboutvodafone/legal/fairusepolicy. For the first billing month any additional data usage within Australia will be free.