Vodafone says interference is beyond its control

New Zealand's largest telcos are set to go head to head in court Wednesday with Vodafone seeking an injunction to stop Telecom's new XT network interfering with its existing mobile network.

And Vodafone is saying the interference is beyond its control. A statement of claim, released last night, says there are no technically or economically feasible measures for Vodafone to stop the interference.

The claim says Telecom's XT network is producing "out-of-band" emmissions within Vodafone's 900MHz RX band and causing harmful interference, including failed and dropped connections.

The claim says Telecom has failed to install "minimum" filters to stop the interference before taking the network live.

Vodafone says it first noted the interference in January. It is seeking an injunction to stop transmission -- to effectively shut the network down ahead of its planned launch on May 13 -- plus damages and costs.

A second cause of action in the claim is one of private nuisance, claiming Telecom is interfering with Vodafone's right to use and enjoy its land, the land being the sites of its base stations.

The claim says that Telecom as an experienced operator foresaw, or should have foreseen, the problems.

Yet another cause of action claims negligence by Telecom, claiming it has been negligent in designing and building its network and failing in its duty of care to Vodafone and other operators.

Telecom has said its network meets the terms of its licence according to the Ministry of Economic Development, which polices spectrum issues. It also says it was working with Vodafone to resolve the issues and was suprised by that company's decision to go legal.