NBN Co has handed Ericsson Australia a four year contract to deliver fixed wireless and satellite services to premises across regional Australia.

Under the four-year contract, Ericsson will maintain responsibility for the operation of the NBN fixed wireless service.

It also will manage the ground systems of the forthcoming long term satellite service.

The two satellites, purpose-built for NBN Co, are scheduled to launch into orbit from next year. The contract will also see Ericsson migrate NBN Co's 42,000 existing interim satellite users to the long-term satellite service when it commences operations to provide them with an improved broadband service. NBN Co chief operating officer, Greg Adcock, said Ericsson was already playing a central role in helping the NBN to enable the digital economy in regional and rural Australia and to narrow the digital divide between the city and the bush. "It is a sensible use of taxpayers' money to have a single entity managing customer appointments, installation visits, service calls, network performance reporting and network maintenance for all NBN users outside the fixed-line footprint," he said. According to an NBN Co statement, Ericsson's involvement with the long-term satellite service will complement the telemetry, tracking and control (satellite flight operations) functions to be carried out by Optus. As part of the contract, Ericsson has submitted an industry plan to support local businesses in delivering its obligations.

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