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SaskTel and TELUS Enter into HSPA Broadband Wireless Network Sharing Agreement

11/2/09 - SaskTel and TELUS announced they have entered into a broadband wireless network sharing agreement that will facilitate the rapid deployment of next generation wireless and data services through Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) and High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) technologies by SaskTel within Saskatchewan. Customers will enjoy the benefits of the most advanced wireless technology commercially available in the world, expanded network coverage, and access to a range of new and leading-edge wireless devices.

The TELUS' next generation wireless network is the latest enhancement to TELUS' multi-network mobile strategy, offering customers the technology for increased wireless data download speeds of up to 21 megabits per second, access to a world class selection of compelling mobile devices and international roaming service to more than 200 countries.

"TELUS is proud to be collaborating with a leader such as SaskTel to bring the world-class High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) network to TELUS customers in Saskatchewan, further enhancing 3G+ wireless coverage and their mobile broadband experience," said Darren Entwistle, TELUS president and CEO. "At TELUS, we have tremendous respect for SaskTel, its people and its culture of innovation."

SaskTel initially announced its next generation network plans as part of its overall 2009 network investment program which will ensure 100 per cent of Saskatchewan residents have access to High Speed Internet and 98 per cent have access to wireless services. SaskTel's UMTS/HSPA network is expected to be initially launched mid-2010 with a targeted completion date of 2011.

"SaskTel has continually evolved its wireless network in Saskatchewan to provide its customers access to innovative and leading-edge services," SaskTel president and CEO Robert Watson said. "Our agreement with TELUS will maximize our $172 million investment in deploying UMTS/HSPA wireless technologies and will provide our customers increased benefits such as access to Canada's largest 3G+ network."

Just as with TELUS' next generation network, this new network in Saskatchewan will be built with the latest HSPA infrastructure supplied by Nokia Siemens Networks and Huawei Technologies. This initiative will also ensure a smoother transition for SaskTel to long term evolution (LTE) technology, which is the emerging worldwide fourth generation (4G) technology standard, as it becomes available.

By Robert Hoskins

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