Our network recognised as ‘Fastest’ and ‘Best In Test’

Keeping Australians connected is at the heart of everything we do. And at the core of that, is giving our customers the largest and most reliable mobile network that is faster in more places – so all you need to worry about is choosing the right filter for that photo you’re uploading or finding a quiet space for that work call you need to take while out and about.
Iskra Nikolova · 07 February 2022 · 4 minute read

We work tirelessly behind the scenes to make this experience a reality, and we’ve just been recognised by two independent mobile bench-markers, one for Fastest Mobile Network and the other for Best in Test Mobile network with more 5G availability and faster speeds in more places.

We’ve just been awarded Australia’s fastest mobile network by Ookla®

The Speedtest Award™ for Australia’s Fastest Mobile Network, is a twice-yearly award and is based on Ookla’s flagship network testing platform, which collects hundreds of millions of measurements about the performance and quality of networks around the world each day.

You may have been to Speedtest.net yourself, it’s a really useful portal to check your internet speed – both on mobile and home internet. Each time someone runs a speed test, that speed and network is recorded – which Ookla uses to judge the best networks across the world.

And in Australia, based on over a million crowd-sourced speed tests from July to December 2021 our mobile network was found to be the fastest – with 78.3Mbps median download and 11.67Mbps median upload speeds.

Ookla found not only that we were faster nationally, but that our mobile network was faster on both median download and median upload speeds in the three largest Australian cities, Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

Our faster speeds are thanks to our rapid rollout of 5G in over 350 cities and towns, meaning our customers experience 5G speeds more of the time in more places, and our ongoing capacity expansion of both 4G and 5G, including deployment of additional 5G bandwidth across our 5G coverage footprint and the addition of new 5G mm Wave sites. These expansions are increasing the typical speeds that our customers experience and, for 5G customers, are delivering high speeds even in crowded and congested CBD environments.

If you’d like further details on the award you can check it out on Ookla’s webpage.

A newly released umlaut audit also ranks our 5G network first on key measures

In umlaut’s Best in Test awards 2021, our mobile network was ranked first in every major category that was up for grabs, including:

  • Best in test (overall win)
  • Best in data
  • Best in voice
  • Best in crowdsourced quality

umlaut has now released a separate 5G audit report looking specifically at all three carriers’ 5G networks. In this latest 5G audit report we also topped many key testing categories that point to our significantly larger 5G coverage and superior 5G customer experience:

  • Highest score overall in seven of eight cities tested
  • Highest average 5G download speed across six of eight major cities
  • Best 5G availability across all major cities highlighting our 5G coverage advantage, and
  • Highest average download speed across both 4G and 5G in all major cities

Like its “Best in Test” benchmark, umlaut’s methodology for its 5G Mobile Audit report is intense. It entails a rigorous series of real-world exercises conducted over several weeks that puts each network in the country through their paces to determine which is best.

For this report, umlaut performed network testing in the largest cities by population: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Gold Coast and Canberra. They also tested state capital Hobart and Toowoomba as examples of large regional cities. Perth unfortunately wasn’t able to be included due to border restrictions at the time of testing.

umlaut 5G results in numbers

The results we’ve seen in these tests are really pleasing, particularly around the availability of our 5G network backed by our largest 5G coverage – this is something we’ve invested in immensely to ensure our customers have 5G in more places. It currently covers over 75% of Australians, and our larger 5G reach was reflected across all cities sampled – especially in two of the cities (Hobart and Toowoomba) where Telstra 5G was the only 5G available.

Here are a couple of key numbers to come out of the testing:

  • Across all eight cities in testing, Telstra 5G was available at a minimum 86% of the time, with one city reporting 5G availability a significant 98.9% of the time
  • On 5G speed results for the six major cities across all carriers with a 5G presence, our average 5G download speeds ranged from 442Mbps in Melbourne up to 559Mbps in Adelaide with Max speeds more than double these averages

Interested in learning more? You can have a look at umlaut's full 5G audit report (PDF 4.9MB).

What you need to know

Based on analysis by Ookla® ® of Speedtest Intelligence® data Q3–Q4 2021. Ookla trademarks used under license and reprinted with permission.


By Iskra Nikolova

Network and Infrastructure Executive

Iskra Nikolova joined Telstra in November 2020 as the Network and Infrastructure Executive. At Telstra Iskra is responsible for the Customer Access Networks (Fixed and Mobile), Transport and IP, Private Cloud infrastructure and Telstra’s International Network. Born in Bulgaria, Iskra relocated to the UK in her late twenties with her husband and son and has developed her career in London working for companies such as Ericsson, MCI Worldcom and Cable&Wireless in engineering and commercial roles and has worked in senior leadership Network roles in telecommunications businesses across the world. Iskra holds a Master of Science degree in Computer Science and Telecommunications and an MBA from London Business School. In her spare time she enjoys cycling and photography and exploring Melbourne and Victoria where she is based.

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