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Wireless Broadband Boosts Australian Economy by $4.7 Billion

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Australia's rapid take up of wireless broadband has boosted economic productivity, according to an economist. Dr Paul Paterson of Concept Economics says a study looking at the economic impact of wireless broadband estimates that if take up continues at current levels there will be an ongoing annual productivity dividend to Australians of AU$7.4 billion (USD4.7 billion) the equivalent of AU$250 (US$158) for every household.

"Since Telstra switched on its Next G network in 2005, Australians have really embraced wireless broadband. This rapid take-up has put our economy on a better footing to deal with the economic downturn," Dr Paterson said. "The study found there are further gains to come with 58% of small and medium businesses already using 3G services planning to expand their use of mobile broadband this year."

Dr Paterson said wireless broadband had become an essential business partner, helping streamline processes, make better use of time and generate new business.

"Video conferencing, mobile payments, inventory management, large information data transfers and vehicle tracking are among the most popular applications small businesses are expected to embrace in 2009."

One of 305 small companies surveyed by Concept Economics, Exit Films, used Next G mobile broadband to collaborate with editors and communicate with the investors while filming the soon-to-be-released movie 'The Last Ride'.

Producer, Antonia Barnard, said mobile broadband was able to solve logistical challenges caused by the Melbourne editing suite and shooting locations in the Flinders Ranges being 700 kilometres apart.

"Things you take for granted such as mobile phone coverage and Internet access suddenly become very important. As a result of using the Telstra Next G network we estimate that we saved over $30,000 in costs and many hours in lost production time as well," she said.

On one occasion, $15,000 was saved after editors matched to the film a critical image of salt flats that production staff had taken on location and emailed to Melbourne, preserving valuable production hours

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Tags: 3g  mobile payments  mobile broadband  telstra  wireless broadband  melbourne  Australia