Internet for Yachts in New Caledonia hits 4G.
3G mobile phone coverage is excellent in New Caledonia and yachts can enjoy good internet and phone service in most of the lagoon and island anchorages. In February the local telco, OPT, began a 4G mobile service that boosts data speeds.
The 4G network has 55 base stations in operation with 57 more planned by the end of 2015 and 38 new sites in 2016.
New Caledonia 4G network will ultimately consist of 150 sites, 75 with Band 3 1800MHz, 74 with Band 20 800MHz and one, in Noumea, with Band 1 - 2600MHz
If you have an UNLOCKED Australian or New Zealand smart phone or modem it will work fine on 3G in New Caledonia. But you might be limited to Band 3 of the 4G network because Australia, New Zealand, the US and many other countries don't use Band 20 (800 MHz).
New Caledonia mobile bands and frequencies:
4G Lte Bands 3 (1800MHz), 7 (2600MHz), 20 (800MHz)
3G WCDMA Bands 1 (2100MHz H-IMT), 8 (900 MHz E-GSM)
Once you arrive in New Caledonia you can buy a pay-in-advance "Carte Liberte" welcome pack. Once you install the sim card in your phone or modem, the telco has devised a nutty system for accessing a data connection. When you are ready to get data you send an SMS to one of three numbers with IMD (stands for Internet Mobile a la Demand) as the message.
For example if you send an SMS to 1110 you get one hour of data for about 100cfp (about AUS$1.00).
Send the SMS to 1111 and you'll get 24hrs Unlimited data but the speed drops to 250Kb/s after 20MB. That costs 420cfp (about Aus$4.20).
For more information visit: http://www.cruising-newcaledonia.com/internet-new-caledonia.html