iiNet claims “first place in fibre”

ISP iiNet says it has connected more than 10,000 customers to fibre to the Home (FTTH) broadband across Australia, surpassing the total number of FTTH customers connected to the NBN.

iiNet’s Chief Executive Officer Michael Malone says that more than 8,000 iiNet Group customers are connected to high-speed FTTH broadband via iiNet’s TransACT and Internode networks and wholesale services, and that a further 2,700 are connected through the NBN.

iiNet calls itself “the leading challenger in Australia’s communications industry” and which is the second largest DSL ISP (after Telstra). Malone, one of the industry’s more tireless self-promoters, said iiNet’s recent acquisitions and growth have positioned the company to be the leader in FTTH broadband in Australia.

“We’re all about upgrading the lives of our customers and giving them access to innovative products backed up by our award-winning customer service. When it comes to FTTH, we’re using every opportunity to connect as many Australians as we can to the best internet around,” he said.

“The number of residential customers connected by the iiNet Group also surpasses the number of Australian homes connected to Fibre by any other provider. As well as delivering super-fast broadband to more people than are connected to FTTH through the NBN, we’re now the largest provider of FTTH services in the country.”

Read More: http://www.itwire.com/business-it-news/networking/57650-iinet-claims-%E2%80%9Cfirst-place-in-fibre%E2%80%9D

FTTH NBN construction to commence shortly

It’s been stated that work on the new national broadband network could commence shortly with $250 million to be allocated on a fibre optic backhaul by September.

The Australian Federal Government will start seeking Tenders shortly, who will then be required to submit proposals by June this year in order to start development in rural and regional areas come September where there is very little network competition. The somewhat hasty directive by the Government is also asking for feedback on who should build and own the network.

The document barely outlines the important factors surrounding the new NBN with many analysts stating that it leaves too many questions unanswered.

Fibre To The Premises Broadband Plans

Anyone wishing to get the most out of broadband Internet access does not have to look any further than super fast high speed Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) technology. Connection speeds of 100Mbps are achievable with FTTP technology but it doesn’t stop there. On a commercial level, Fiber to the Premises is already transmitting speeds of up to 1Gbps (1000Mbps) in some countries.

The Australian Federal Government’s $43 billion National Broadband Fibre to the Premises Broadband Plans are to connect 90% of Australia’s population with lighting fast 100Mbps Broadband within 8 years. A very ambitious target considering it’s going to cost a whopping $43 billion, however, most industry experts agree that this latest FTTP announcement is a master stroke and if it becomes fruition, will push Australia up the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) rankings as a front runner in World Class fixed line and wireless Broadband Internet technology.

So what is FTTP?
In a nutshell, Fibre to the Premises is a communication delivery technology that uses fibre optic material opposed to the copper based infrastructure wiring witnessed in current ADSL2+ and landline phone services. FTTP differentiates from other similar fibre based communication methods such as Fibre to the Node (FTTN), Fibre to the Curb (FTTC) and Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC – that Telstra BigPond currently use), as it bypasses the ‘last mile’ copper wires that these methods require.

Why do Australians need FTTP?
Touted as the biggest Infrastructure project that Australia has ever seen, I can understand why many average Aussies may be concerned and or scratching their heads and asking why do we need a super fast broadband network such as this. After all, we’re talking about investing $43 billion now, and not $4.7 billion any more.

I suspect that many average Australians are ignorant of the potential future benefits, innovations and business opportunities that a high speed FTTP National Broadband Network will invite. It’s quite possible that many people are merely thinking that a new FTTP network will just provide faster broadband in order to deliver triple play services such as IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) bundled with Broadband and Home Phone services. Well I can tell you that’s only the beginning.

Firstly we could start with improvements in Home, Recreation and Business automation technology. Fast FTTP broadband will also assist Australia both nationally and on a global scale to acquire new business opportunities and become more competitive on the world platform. But then there’s Innovation!

Robust Broadband could provide the ability for consultations with Doctors, Accountants, Bank Managers etc… from home via Video type conferencing to their practice. People with medical conditions can be monitored more closely and on a frequent basis. It’s also been stated that Medical Specialists and Surgeons will eventually be able to perform delicate operations on patients while being on the opposite side of the globe!

This is only the beginning. These possibilities, like many new and emerging innovative services and business that fast Broadband will breed, could also create a run on effect for the environment (e.g Alleviate traffic congestion) which will also impact positively on our everyday lives (E.g. Less pollution).

FTTP is more than just improving your Broadband download speeds. Broadband is a revolution and the new upcoming Fibre to the Premises Broadband Network is a stepping stone to the next level.

Search and compare fast ADSL2+ and Cable Broadband Internet Plans right here at Broadband Guide.

Aust Gov to build $43 billion 21st Century National Broadband Network

And the winner is… The Australian People!

Putting the future of Australia first, the Federal Government today announced that it has scrapped requests for proposals on the NBN by effectively terminating this process on 7 April 2009 and simultaneously announcing a new $43 billion project in which the Australian Federal Government will build, own and operate a new high speed National Broadband Network over the next eight years.

The Government envisions the future broadband network to predominantly use FTTP – Fibre to the Premises (aka FTTH – Fibre to the Home) which consists of fibre optic technology. It’s still unclear what remote and regional parts of Australia will use for Broadband delivery, although it’s been suggested that developments in new Wireless technology could play a significant roll in these areas.

A new NBN process will commence immediately with the Federal Government to establish a company to build and operate the initial $4.7 billion stage of the broadband network. This includes an overhaul on ‘blackspots’ throughout the country along with work on a new FTTP and Wireless network in Tasmania to start as early as July 2009.

Telecommunication regulatory reform has also been announced with the Government seeking views and opinions on making the broadband regime more effective, especially in regards to the churning process which involves consumers migrating or transferring from their existing ADSL or Cable connections to new high speed broaband Internet access on the upcoming new Broadband Network infrastructure.

Stay tuned to Youcompare and Broadband Guide for further NBN developments!

Optus G9 seek ‘Fair Go’ for NBN

In a recent speech on the upcoming National Broadband Network by OPTUS CEO Paul O’Sullivan, he stated that his overall message could be summed up in one phrase ‘Australia cannot take Competition in Broadband for granted’. In colloquial terminology using a famous Aussie expression it sounds more like he’s asking for a ‘Fair Go’ due to the current (and past) state of the Australian Broadband Industry and the Policy Guidelines behind the NBN process.  

Mr O’Sullivan also referred to the National Broadband Network as ‘Open Heart Surgery’ and touched on subjects that inlcuded The OPEL Decision, Structural Separation and gave an insight into the Broadband Market and the struggle that many ISP’s have against Telstra’s monopoly of the industry due to regulatory inadequacies.

Telstra has used its market power, over two thirds market share in residential fixed voice, to keep prices high – whilst pocketing the savings from the lower wholesale prices we have been forced to give it.

But recent developments are giving us increasing concern that the fine words of opposition are being lost under the heavy burden of Government and in the face of a seductive though anticompetitive pitch from Telstra.

If the new national broadband network is a repeat of Telstra controlling bottleneck infrastructure it will be a comprehensive policy failure – and Australian consumers will literally pay for this mistake.

we stand ready to provide a compelling proposal which will dramatically improve Australia’s broadband services. But we can only do this if we are given a fair and reasonable chance to put in a serious and compelling bid.


Read the entire speech article at news.com.au

Mixed feelings on Oz Broadband Ranking

Australia has risen four places in Broadband world rankings which currently witnesses our position as 12th overall. That’s the good news. However, the latest OECD figures show that Australia has also started dragging the chain again and fallen behind other advanced countries due to the unresolved new FTTH Broadband Network status which the government has procrastinated with for quite sometime now.

Senator Coonan is bound to jump up and down about the elevated rankings position (whoopee do), but the real issues for Australians regards our future! The current progress Coonan and the Federal Government have made with the FTTH network development (or should I say lack of) overshadows any positives made from a higher world ranking. It’s not the jump to 12th place from 16th that we should be focused upon, it’s this lack of vision and progress (rated zero by the OECD) which places Australia way behind the likes of Japan and Korea. It’s this statistic that should be of major concern. Let’s get real here, we’re still very far from where we need to position ourselves on a ‘broadband level’ for this country to really power ahead as a prosperous nation and a potential world leader in technology.

Australia’s increased broadband ranking was the good news. The bad was that, with FTTH presently stalled, we are falling even further behind the most advanced nations.

Fibre connections account for 36 percent of all Japanese broadband subscriptions and 31 percent in Korea.” The figure in Australia was so low as to be rated zero!

Source: ITWire OECD article.

Fibre to the Planet

Australians are certainly behind the eight ball when it comes to Broadband Technology (as we all should know by now). While the Federal Government is bungling around in la la land over a new national high speed Broadband Network as the Federal Election looms, other regions of the planet such as Asia are far more advanced than Australia using robust Fibre to the Home Technology (that’s since early 2000 as well).

Although not entirely wide spread yet, other regions such as Europe and more so Scandinavia have embraced the technology and implemented Fibre to the Home Networks. It’s easy to see that the core of Australia’s future depends on a national high speed Broadband network, so why is it that decisions and development on Broadband infrastructure in our country are taking so long and being left on the backburner?

21.2 percent of homes in Hong Kong were found to be wired with FTTH, followed by South Korea at 19.6 percent and Japan at 16.3 percent.

In Japan, FTTH often provides a 100Mbps connection for less money than Australians pay for a connection one-tenth as fast.

Take-up in Europe varies from country to country, although the most significant movement to date have taken place in the Scandinavian countries and, latterly, France and the Netherlands.

Current estimates put the number of subscribers across the continent at around one million, with Sweden leading the way with some 27 percent of subscribers.

Much of the debate around fibre in Australia remains around fibre to the node, with both the Coalition and Labor planning to authorise rollouts in the near future — should they be elected.

Labor’s communications spokesperson Stephen Conroy has previously lent his support to a FTTH rollout although the costs involved in such a move remain prohibitive, according to the Opposition senator.

Read the entire article at ZDNet.com.au

Telstra Developers to roll out FTTH

Fibre-to-the-Home is slowly rolling out as an initiative between Telstra and developers is set to provide 1800 homes with a new Broadband services that will support streaming high definition video content by early 2008. The FTTH network will roll out Broadband Internet, Television & Telephone services into the respective development area which should become an alternative to copper-based ADSL Broadband.

As part of its Telstra Smart Community agreement, the telco is rolling out fibre to the home (FTTH) to about 1800 homes at a development being built by Lend Lease at Rouse Hill in Sydney’s northwest. The first customers are expected to be connected in early 2008.

“Telstra Velocity is a commercial venture and will only be deployed in new greenfield developments where there is appropriate investment by the developer, where the developer has signed a Telstra Smart Community agreement and where Telstra can make a commercial return on its investment.”

Read the entire article at Australia IT.



FTTN or FTTH Network

With all this talk about a new high speed Broadband network for Australia, and should it be based on Fibre to the home or Fibre to the node technology, it has prompted me to get down to the basics for those of you out there who aren’t up to speed.

The current Australian liberal government is seeking tenders to build a new Broadband network. The guideline prospectus that was recently released suggests that the network infrastructure has to be faster than anything available today with the future potential of being upgradeable.  It appears that only two variations will have the requirements to suit such a network (FTTN or FTTH). So what is the fundamental difference between the two, and how much will they cost? Let’s take a closer look.

FTTN – Fibre to the node (aka fibre to the neighborhood or fibre to the cabinet – FTTCab):
FTTN is a telecommunication technology that uses ‘fibre optic’ cables that run from a cabinet in a local neighborhood. Connecting to this infrastructure from your home is done so by using ‘coaxial cable’ (the cable we currently use now for broadband services) or twisted pair wiring. Typically, a FTTN cabinet serves a few hundred customers in an approximate radius of 1.5kms or so. If the area that a cabinet serves is less than approximately 300ms, it would be then referred to as ‘Fibre to the curb’ (FTTC or fibre to the kerb FTTK).

FTTH – Fibre to the home (aka fiber to the premises – FTTP)
FTTH (like FTTN) is another variation of a ‘fibre optic’ telecommunication transmission technology. However it runs straight to the subscriber’s premises and therefore differentiates from FTTH as it does not use the ‘coaxial cable’ nor ‘twisted pair wiring’ methods.

How fast – Fibre Speeds
FTTN & FTTH technology can both produce Broadband speeds in the vicinity of 15-50Mbit/s. However, only a FTTH has the potential to reach office desktop speeds of 100-1,000Mbit/s (1Gbit).

How much – Fibre Prices $$
It’s been suggested that a FTTH network would cost about $1500 per household. While some argue that’s twice the amount that a FTTN network would cost, others suggest that a ball park FTTN figure is around $4.5 billion, and a FTTH network $20 billion.

While we in Australia await the deliberations of the government’s expert panel on fibre-to-the-node (FTTN), other countries in the region are steadily building fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) access networks.

There are four main ways in which a major network upgrade can be justified: investment in national infrastructure; new services; operations cost savings; and competitive response.

both could deliver 50Mbit/s downstream and 1-2Mbit/s upstream. But, eventually, if we all want the line rates currently delivered to office desktops – namely, 100-1,000 Mbit/s – then FTTH will be required.

A broader view of the issues, such as reduced road traffic through greater home working and remote delivery of health and education services, could start to close the cost gap between FTTN and FTTH. 

Will it be a case that Australia is caught on the ‘back foot’ when it comes to technological advancements and may be left behind for sometime to come? Or will we get a high speed state-of-the-art Broadband network that will keep us on par with the rest of the world (or possibly higher) which will help our nation, and economy, excel toward future prosperity. Which ever the case, we’ll have to wait until after this year’s election well and truly passes for a decision.

Read the entire ‘Fibre: going all the way? article here at ovum


Additional Information and Statistics
FTTH & FTTN research gathered from
FTTH & FTTN Network costs sourced from The Age.com
Speeds & Prices researched from Fibre: going all the way article at ovum.com

Only Fibre-to-the-Home will do

Australia needs a very fast Broadband network now, there’s no doubting that! While the Australian federal government spends $4 billion annually on our roads,  in comparison, it’s quite amazing really, to understand why they’ve elected to only allocate $4.5 billion on a new Australian Broadband network? Some of the guidelines stated in their new network prospectus show that ‘it should be upgradeable’. Why then develop a slower Fibre-to-the-Node network only for it to be superseded down the track by a possible faster Fibre-to-the-home network? We all know that new technology is being developed almost as frequently as it becomes obsolete in some case, so could it be probable that Wireless or Satellite Broadband may replace fibre at some stage too?   

Considering the various factors that are vital to Australia’s future economy and prosperity which partially sit behind the IT & Telecommunication industry, some of us are left dumb founded. This includes various Broadband experts who are continually sending out warning signs that suggest that it may already be too late unless Australia acts intelligently.

Below are some quotes and statistics taken from The Age article ‘Broadband expert warns Australia’.

if that situation is to change, the Government has to encourage investment in taking optical fibre cables not just to street corner nodes, but all the way to homes

The broadband speed available to Australian home owners can be as low as 256 kilobits per second although 1 mbps or so is becoming more common for users within a few kilometres of Telstra telephone exchanges.

“If we all want the line rates currently delivered to office desktops — namely, 100-1000 mbps, then a fibre to the home (FTTH) network will be required,” Mr Campbell says.

Read the entire article at The Age

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