Bandwidth is the width or capacity of the channel, the wider the bandwidth the more data that can be transferred through and the more users the network can handle. As mobile networks have evolved we have seen bandwidth increase from 1MHz up to 20MHz channels.
Telstra use the FDD variant of LTE which uses separate frequencies for downlink and uplink and are called paired frequency bands. An example is Telstra’s LTE 20MHz network on the 700 band, allocating the bandwidth for uplink and downlink. It is also referred to a 2 x 20MHz
700 Band (703-803 MHz)
Contiguous vs Non-Contiguous
A carriers bandwidth can be Contiguous (within a single block) or Non-Contiguous (spread across a number of smaller blocks.
This is the most efficient use of spectrum for a carrier, being cost effective to deploy and offering faster
data speeds. The mobile device uses the complete 20MHz.
As blocks owned by the carrier are spread across the band they end up with several small pipes compared
with one large pipe. The mobile device only uses 5MHz (only one of the two blocks).
Telstra bandwidth can vary between states:
- 3G 850 uses 5MHz on HSPA+ and 10MHz on DC-HSPA+. DC-HSPA is available in most areas.
- 3G 1800 uses 10, 15 or 20MHz depending on the state
- 4G 700 uses 20MHz of bandwidth across Australia