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Vodafone switches on its 4G network

The telco is now offering 4G in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Newcastle and Wollongong.

Vodafone has flicked the switch on its long-awaited 4G service, with some customers able to access the network immediately.

(Credit: Vodafone)

The service is initially only available to existing customers with a 4G-ready phone and "the right plan", according to a release from Vodafone.

The 4G FAQ hosted on Vodafone's site clarifies that all current "in-market" plans are 4G ready, but some older ones may not be. Vodafone will contact customers who are 4G ready across their plans, phones and areas "over the next few months".

New customers will be able to join Vodafone's 4G network from July.

The service will be available in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Newcastle and Wollongong, with Vodafone opening new coverage areas "in the future".

Vodafone's 4G service is unique in Australia, as it uses a 20Mhz bandwidth, theoretically allowing for faster data transfer than on 10MHz.

CNET Australia has seen download speeds of 109Mbps on Vodafone's 4G network, but this was during a demonstration, not under real-world conditions.