14 July 2017

Here’s why I’m not moving to the NBN on the Southside

| Chris Steel MLA
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The National Broadband Network (NBN) had the potential to revolutionise Australia’s internet infrastructure.

Fast and reliable broadband is vital to the way we will provide health services, deliver a world class education, do business, deliver smart infrastructure and build a strong and growing economy.

That is why my Federal Labor colleague, Gai Brodtmann MP has run a vigorous campaign to bring the NBN to Canberra, petitioning the Federal Government and asking members of the community to send in their speeds, advocating on behalf of suburbs that are still stuck with ADSL.

I have campaigned with Gai on the NBN because it is also one of the biggest issues in my electorate on the Southside. And in just over a months’ time, and after years of delays, the NBN will be switched on in my neighbourhood.

At the last Federal election Labor committed to roll out Fibre to the Home (FFTH) in new premises, reflecting Labor’s longstanding commitment in establishing the National Broadband Network to deliver fast and reliable broadband.

Unfortunately Labor lost the Federal election, and what we have been left with under two terms of a Liberal Government is the slow roll out of a second grade network of Fibre to the Node (FTTN). FTTN uses the old and unreliable copper network to connect homes, rather than connecting the fibre directly.

Despite the Coalition’s downgrades to the NBN to FTTN, I was very optimistic about the benefits of any small improvement to internet speed. However, as my suburb’s NBN connection date in September becomes closer, I am now asking myself whether I will in fact I take up the NBN.

For a start, the cost is significantly more for faster speeds. The price of NBN is $99.99 a month for limitless broadband up to 100Mbps on iiNet.

The competitor is the existing TransACT VDSL 2 fibre network which is now owned by iiNet. Both VDSL2 and the NBN are both FFTN ( in established neighbourhoods).

iiNet retails the VDSL 2 service at $79.95 per month for unlimited. This is significantly cheaper than the NBN option and my experience has been that it is fast and reliable.

I would be prepared to pay for faster broadband. However, even with a connection speed of up to 100mbps there is no guarantee that the NBN will be any faster than the VDSL 2 network which provides speeds up to 80Mbps download /20Mbps upload.

The speed of the NBN will depend significantly on how far people are away from the node, and no one can know for sure what speed they will achieve until they are connected.

As if they were listening to my internal deliberations on this issue, my internet service provider (ISP), iiNet sent through a very handy email this week:

‘You’ve probably been hearing a lot about the NBN™ lately, so we thought we’d help clear a few things up.

That’s because our VDSL2 network is already delivering reliable, high-speed internet with speeds of up to 80Mbps available.

The NBN™ will not be replacing the network which powers your current VDSL2 broadband service.

This means that you can keep your current VDSL2 broadband for as long as you’d like. You don’t have to switch to the NBN™.’

My reading of this email is that iiNet is concerned about their VDSL 2 customers being let down if they transition to the NBN (FTTN), even if they remain with iiNet as an ISP.

If the NBN cannot deliver speeds faster and more reliable than VDSL2, it would appear to be a seemingly unnecessary and expensive duplication of our existing services that have been around as early as 2009 across a large part of Canberra.

Now in fairness, the NBN Co does claim that:

FTTN sets us up very well should the demand for faster speeds arise and a move to fibre to the curb (FTTC)– we are very much designing the network with future upgrades in mind’.

I certainly hope that the Federal Government does upgrade the NBN to FFTC in the future, because in short term i’m not yet convinced that moving to NBN (FTTN) as it stands, is a better option than VDSL 2 on speed or price.

Of course, there are many suburbs on the Southside including Gleneagles that do not currently have access to VDSL2. In fact, some suburbs in Tuggeranong have some of the slowest internet speeds in Australia, and for them the new NBN connection will make a huge difference to their lives and businesses.

Nonetheless, it is unfortunate that that the choice is a second grade NBN using the old unreliable Telstra copper network.

So until I’m convinced by the evidence I’ll be sticking with the old TransACT network.

And for those who voted and campaigned for the real NBN – the one that was supposed to connect fibre to the home –there’s only one person to blame, and that’s the former Minister responsible, and now Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull.

What’s your experience? Is NBN (FTTN) any faster than your previous VDSL2 connection?

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Labor forced the NBN on the public in the first place.
Governments let the infrastructure fall onto disrepair in the first place through the same thing as today . Lazy. incompetent government who couldn’t estimate cost on a trip to Woolworths . You would just whine they want peanut butter, while you want vegemite.

WTF? NBN blithely tell us that we will be forced to give up our home phones. I keep my phone line for the exact reason that it operates without electricity in an emergency. I just want my copper home phone and high-speed mobile. I’m not going to sign up to the NBN, particularly as they won’t tell me how far from the nearest node my house is.

gooterz said :

I still wonder if this is so important then why didn’t ACT Labor just buy back the transact network and upgrade it to FTTH.
Seems much more of an investment over light rail.

Instead they backed behind getting FTTH rolled out in North Canberra (Which also happened to be their centre of voting). South Canberra got nothing at all.

Canberra is such a small place that the rollout of a fibre network would be far more cost effective than other states because there is only one major population centre and there is little need to run long strings of fibre across empty space.

The original model for funding the NBN was broken, the CVC charges were the nail in the coffin. It meant that everyone suffered for speed because of the crazy pricing or everyone suffered from congestion. It also had little in the way of back haul.

NBN was designed to increase competition. iinet is now owned by TPG and there are only really 4 players in the market today. Seems it was always going to be a failure

The TransACT FTTH only worked were there were Actew power poles in the backyard. The government deemed about 30 years ago that all power connections in Canberra from then on be underground so this is why a lot of the newer suburbs in Tuggers missed out. I also heard that Telstra underground ducts would not carry the TransACT cables for what reason I do not know. I am glad the ACT Government didn’t buy TransACT. Indirectly they had already lost $54 million on it at the time it was sold.

I still wonder if this is so important then why didn’t ACT Labor just buy back the transact network and upgrade it to FTTH.
Seems much more of an investment over light rail.

Instead they backed behind getting FTTH rolled out in North Canberra (Which also happened to be their centre of voting). South Canberra got nothing at all.

Canberra is such a small place that the rollout of a fibre network would be far more cost effective than other states because there is only one major population centre and there is little need to run long strings of fibre across empty space.

The original model for funding the NBN was broken, the CVC charges were the nail in the coffin. It meant that everyone suffered for speed because of the crazy pricing or everyone suffered from congestion. It also had little in the way of back haul.

NBN was designed to increase competition. iinet is now owned by TPG and there are only really 4 players in the market today. Seems it was always going to be a failure

E Loomes said :

You can get much much cheaper NBN packages here in Canberra than those Iinet is offering. I am moving to the NBN just to get as far away from Iinet as possible and to pay less. Iinet, who offer unlimited data, charges through the nose for its services and is virtually uncontactable when there are problems. I use a fraction of 50 GB data every month, perhaps because I don’t watch a lot of movies, play games or download internet research very often. TransAct provided a local industry, with local jobs, and we joined as soon as they arrived. Sadly, they’re gone. Federal Labor were offering a better form of NBN but it never got off the ground. I’m choosing reality, rather than wait for pie-in-the-sky promises which deliver nothing to Canberra residents right now. So It’s the NBN for me, goodbye Iinet, and who knows? the NBN may actually be improved in the future.

“Federal Labor were offering a better form of NBN………..”
They still are but details and costing are still in the mail.

You can get much much cheaper NBN packages here in Canberra than those Iinet is offering. I am moving to the NBN just to get as far away from Iinet as possible and to pay less. Iinet, who offer unlimited data, charges through the nose for its services and is virtually uncontactable when there are problems. I use a fraction of 50 GB data every month, perhaps because I don’t watch a lot of movies, play games or download internet research very often. TransAct provided a local industry, with local jobs, and we joined as soon as they arrived. Sadly, they’re gone. Federal Labor were offering a better form of NBN but it never got off the ground. I’m choosing reality, rather than wait for pie-in-the-sky promises which deliver nothing to Canberra residents right now. So It’s the NBN for me, goodbye Iinet, and who knows? the NBN may actually be improved in the future.

wildturkeycanoe6:34 pm 20 Jul 17

“Who needs 100Mbps?”. That isn’t the entire issue. You are talking about download speed there, but upload speed [or lack thereof] is what makes or breaks the service. 20Mbps might suffice for 3 teenagers doing homework on their tablets whilst you download a Foxtel movie, but what if you only get 1.5Mbps to upload photos to the cloud? Impossible. I already tried cloud services and managed a few hundred photos in a 24 hour period. Our important pics and videos would take a month of continuous uploading to save to the cloud and whilst doing so disrupts all the downloads, effectively making our internet useless. Unless the NBN guarantees a decent level of upload to complement the fast speeds, it won’t be much improvement on oir present ADSL2. It seems that to get these fast speeds, if the copper into your house can handle them, you also need to take out a second mortgage to pay for it. I fear instead of getting NBN, many people will be left with no affordable internet at all. Reviews on forums already show what a backwards step the NBN’s FTTN has become.

Read up on the Cisco whitepaper on “The Zettabyte Era”. Global Internet traffic to TRIPLE in 5 years from 2016.

So while you continue to read your paper Canberra Times, the rest of us are being overloaded with data that we can’t download on crappy FTTN.

The paper also talks about “wireless” devices but they include wifi devices. An iPad is wireless but typically connects to a home wireless network, which is still typically connected to fixed/wired internet. Sure someone can say all their home devices are wireless, but they’re also likely to still be connected to a wireless router on fixed wired internet.

dungfungus said :

I think we could all agree that wireless will supercede everything in the next 5 – 10 years so all that stuff in the ground and on the poles will become redundant.

In the meantime the printed Canberra Times is “interactive” enough for most of us otherwise they wouldn’t still be printing it, would they?

No it won’t, not in 5-10 years. Are you suggesting that households will access the internet primarily via mobile telcos? That won’t happen anytime soon, certainly not within a decade.

And no, printed Canberra Times it’s not interactive enough for “most” of you, maybe “some” of you.

spades said :

dungfungus said :

There must come a time when the cables will go, surely, so that will leave everyone in the same boat because TPG are calling the shots now.

Well there comes a time when everything in this world will come to an end. Jut a matter of when. When the TransACT cables go lets just hope FTTP is ready by then.

The issue with the Libs’ FTTN is that while the speeds it offers is more than enough, it is not future proof. FTTP today is up to 100Mbps but the cables themselves can handle 1Gbps. That’s saying a lot. We may not need to dig up and replace these cables for decades. Copper from FTTN nodes will need to be replaced WAY earlier than that. The long term costs will no doubt be more expensive than if we went FTTP today.

Yes 50-100Mbps is more than enough for the average household, but for how long? In our household we already stream up to 3 simultaneous HD services. Our ~50Mbps iiNet VDSL2 can handle it fine, but as content and technolgies advance it may be that in 5 years, UHD is considered the norm. A 50Mbps connection may struggle streaming 3 UHD content. Furthermore, a lot of websites are on average just increasing on content. Go to something like Canberra Times. Observe the amount of media, videos and anything interactive on it. I guarantee that in 10 years the content downloaded from the same website will more than double. Ads themselves may be in HD/UHD.

That’s why I find those asking “Who needs 100Mbps?” narrow minded. Yeah we don’t need it now, but I prefer that my street wasn’t excavated every 5-10 years because cables need to be upgraded.

I think we could all agree that wireless will supercede everything in the next 5 – 10 years so all that stuff in the ground and on the poles will become redundant.

In the meantime the printed Canberra Times is “interactive” enough for most of us otherwise they wouldn’t still be printing it, would they?

dungfungus said :

There must come a time when the cables will go, surely, so that will leave everyone in the same boat because TPG are calling the shots now.

Well there comes a time when everything in this world will come to an end. Jut a matter of when. When the TransACT cables go lets just hope FTTP is ready by then.

The issue with the Libs’ FTTN is that while the speeds it offers is more than enough, it is not future proof. FTTP today is up to 100Mbps but the cables themselves can handle 1Gbps. That’s saying a lot. We may not need to dig up and replace these cables for decades. Copper from FTTN nodes will need to be replaced WAY earlier than that. The long term costs will no doubt be more expensive than if we went FTTP today.

Yes 50-100Mbps is more than enough for the average household, but for how long? In our household we already stream up to 3 simultaneous HD services. Our ~50Mbps iiNet VDSL2 can handle it fine, but as content and technolgies advance it may be that in 5 years, UHD is considered the norm. A 50Mbps connection may struggle streaming 3 UHD content. Furthermore, a lot of websites are on average just increasing on content. Go to something like Canberra Times. Observe the amount of media, videos and anything interactive on it. I guarantee that in 10 years the content downloaded from the same website will more than double. Ads themselves may be in HD/UHD.

That’s why I find those asking “Who needs 100Mbps?” narrow minded. Yeah we don’t need it now, but I prefer that my street wasn’t excavated every 5-10 years because cables need to be upgraded.

JC said :

dungfungus said :

spades said :

OLydia said :

My understanding is that when the NBN is up and active in a suburb, the residents will eventually have to move on to it – usually 6-12 months – as the old copper wire network will be closed down. You have no choice but to move to the NBN or else rely on expensive mobile internet.

Telstra copper, yes, but TransACT VDSL2 is in TransACT/iiNet’s own private copper network. It won’t be switched off.

Because the old Transact VDSL could only be connected via Actew power poles in the backyard it was only available to about 50,000 homes in Canberra. A lot of homes built from about 20 years ago have underground power so they could never get the service anyhow.

There must come a time when the cables will go, surely, so that will leave everyone in the same boat because TPG are calling the shots now.

TPG have made it clear Transact is staying along with the ex Transact HFC in Victoria they also own.

Like they made it clear about other things here?

https://delimiter.com.au/2015/09/04/tpg-pledges-to-retain-iinet-internode-brands-call-centre/

Within 30 days of that pledge the Canberra call centre disappeared.

dungfungus said :

spades said :

OLydia said :

My understanding is that when the NBN is up and active in a suburb, the residents will eventually have to move on to it – usually 6-12 months – as the old copper wire network will be closed down. You have no choice but to move to the NBN or else rely on expensive mobile internet.

Telstra copper, yes, but TransACT VDSL2 is in TransACT/iiNet’s own private copper network. It won’t be switched off.

Because the old Transact VDSL could only be connected via Actew power poles in the backyard it was only available to about 50,000 homes in Canberra. A lot of homes built from about 20 years ago have underground power so they could never get the service anyhow.

There must come a time when the cables will go, surely, so that will leave everyone in the same boat because TPG are calling the shots now.

TPG have made it clear Transact is staying along with the ex Transact HFC in Victoria they also own.

spades said :

OLydia said :

My understanding is that when the NBN is up and active in a suburb, the residents will eventually have to move on to it – usually 6-12 months – as the old copper wire network will be closed down. You have no choice but to move to the NBN or else rely on expensive mobile internet.

Telstra copper, yes, but TransACT VDSL2 is in TransACT/iiNet’s own private copper network. It won’t be switched off.

Because the old Transact VDSL could only be connected via Actew power poles in the backyard it was only available to about 50,000 homes in Canberra. A lot of homes built from about 20 years ago have underground power so they could never get the service anyhow.

There must come a time when the cables will go, surely, so that will leave everyone in the same boat because TPG are calling the shots now.

OLydia said :

My understanding is that when the NBN is up and active in a suburb, the residents will eventually have to move on to it – usually 6-12 months – as the old copper wire network will be closed down. You have no choice but to move to the NBN or else rely on expensive mobile internet.

Furthermore, it is not the “NBN” that is the source of many problems with higher costs and slower speeds but the actual ISPs. The NBN is solely responsible for laying down the optic fibre. Admittedly, FTTN rather than FTTH does impact on speed and connectivity, but this is small compared ISPs scrimping on buying access to use the optic fibre. The ISPs, based on demographics, estimate the likely total upload/download needs for the area – if they underestimate (and it’s in their interests to do so), the results will be slower internet. Pricing is based on assessing what the market can bear along including competition with other providers. This was true with ADSL and will continue with NBN.

Partially right on two fronts. As mentioned below the shutdown is on a Telstra provided services (including all the ADSL providers who use their copper lines). Transact have their own cable so their VDSL is not effected.

As for the speed issue yes true that Providers are skimping on bandwidth though the cost model has recently been (or soon to) change. That’s said if you are on VDSL you also have to play the speed lotto on your connection to the node. Many more losers here than winners.

OLydia said :

My understanding is that when the NBN is up and active in a suburb, the residents will eventually have to move on to it – usually 6-12 months – as the old copper wire network will be closed down. You have no choice but to move to the NBN or else rely on expensive mobile internet.

Telstra copper, yes, but TransACT VDSL2 is in TransACT/iiNet’s own private copper network. It won’t be switched off.

My understanding is that when the NBN is up and active in a suburb, the residents will eventually have to move on to it – usually 6-12 months – as the old copper wire network will be closed down. You have no choice but to move to the NBN or else rely on expensive mobile internet.

Furthermore, it is not the “NBN” that is the source of many problems with higher costs and slower speeds but the actual ISPs. The NBN is solely responsible for laying down the optic fibre. Admittedly, FTTN rather than FTTH does impact on speed and connectivity, but this is small compared ISPs scrimping on buying access to use the optic fibre. The ISPs, based on demographics, estimate the likely total upload/download needs for the area – if they underestimate (and it’s in their interests to do so), the results will be slower internet. Pricing is based on assessing what the market can bear along including competition with other providers. This was true with ADSL and will continue with NBN.

calyptorhynchus1:32 pm 18 Jul 17

Nor will I support a second-rate NBN.

calyptorhynchus1:31 pm 18 Jul 17

iinet are a bunch of crooks, ten years ago I was with them and one day they casually sent me a bill for $500 for one month (usually $50). No amount of telephoning or written enquiries would get them to reveal any details of my alleged use of bandwidth over my allowance. So I quit them and have been with another provider ever since.

The author’s argument is completely valid, but it really is only valid to south Canberra residents who have access to TransACT VDSL2.

Too many words written on a scenario that just affects a small number of people relative to the overall impact of the NBN nationwide.

For the record though I agree with the author. I am on VDSL2 myself and have no intention of moving to NBN FTTN.

ExTransACT said :

Mr Steel, It is very disappointing to see you actively advertising against local businesses.

Being a former TransACT employee I/ we were truly shafted when iiNet then TPG took over TransACT and shutdown the local support and call centres sacking all the local Canberra staff.

Why would you support a monopoly who does not support Canberra ?

The OLD TransACT had local support and local jobs, the new one does not. 1 hour wait times to speak to someone in South Africa or the Phillipines is what you get for supporting them.

At least the NBN is an open network and an opportunity for local business to once again build on their quality local support.

You Sir, are supporting the enemy. The enemy of progress, the enemy of competition and the killer of hundreds of local jobs.

“The OLD TransACT had local support and local jobs……………………………………………………”

It also had continuing losses and its shareholders, including the ACT government through it’s shareholding in a government owned corporation, lost over $200 million when it was sold to iinet.

No one knows yet just how much the NBN, whose genesis was literally on the back of an envelope and never had a business plan, will end up costing the taxpayers of Australia.

Jamie Wheeler10:39 pm 17 Jul 17

ExTransACT said :

Mr Steel, It is very disappointing to see you actively advertising against local businesses.

Being a former TransACT employee I/ we were truly shafted when iiNet then TPG took over TransACT and shutdown the local support and call centres sacking all the local Canberra staff.

Why would you support a monopoly who does not support Canberra ?

The OLD TransACT had local support and local jobs, the new one does not. 1 hour wait times to speak to someone in South Africa or the Phillipines is what you get for supporting them.

At least the NBN is an open network and an opportunity for local business to once again build on their quality local support.

You Sir, are supporting the enemy. The enemy of progress, the enemy of competition and the killer of hundreds of local jobs.

I agree that what iiNet has done to Transact after buying it is appalling. I used to enjoy local support with Transact, now it’s an hour wait to talk to South Africa. They have also made a horrendous mess of existing Transact services. Just recently I spent 5 hours on multiple calls to iiNet to get a Transact mobile phone moved to another provider. Now TPG bought iiNet and own nearly every large ISP in the country!

I don’t think Chris Steele is against Canberra workers and businesses. He is just making the point that the NBN in Canberra could have been so much better. With the coalition’s inferior design, in Canberra they just built a new FTTN network next to the existing established Transact built FTTN network. Why would people on VDSL2 switch to the NBN if the network is not better a better design and is possibly less reliable? I’m staying put unless the NBN is improved in future. That’s hardly likely for a long while now given the huge cost blowouts and delays.

dungfungus said :

As I understand it, the current NBN offers FTTH for those who want/need it but most people will be happy with the standard offer so let’s face it, nothing will really change.

While it is technically possible, they have made the ability to upgrade to FTTP as difficult as possible. They won’t even talk to you until a certain stage has been pass in the rollout. The Liberal party acted on the donations of those who didn’t want the competition and disruption the FTTH NBN would have provided. Big companies who can’t fend for themselves against startups using the NBN to provide quality service. It also would have been bigger competition for Telstra, the same company that for years have been trying to screw over the competition.

The NBN has been one of the biggest political tragedies in recent times. All because of short sighted views and protectionism by the Liberals. The Labor NBN policy was extremely with liberal voters also and if anything a bi-partisan approach should have been taken. We all know Tony Abbott doesn’t know the meaning of negotiate and thus a nation building project to rival all others has been screwed over.

Chris Steel MLA8:44 pm 17 Jul 17

ExTransACT said :

Mr Steel, It is very disappointing to see you actively advertising against local businesses.

Being a former TransACT employee I/ we were truly shafted when iiNet then TPG took over TransACT and shutdown the local support and call centres sacking all the local Canberra staff.

Why would you support a monopoly who does not support Canberra ?.

I’d be quite happy to jump on to the NBN if it is faster, even if I have to pay more.

Labor set up the NBN Co to establish a fast and reliable network. If it is truly delivering that now with the Coalition’s change to FTTN then I’m all ears.

Chris Steel MLA said :

dungfungus said :

So, when Labor win the next election (it’s London to a brick on they will), will anything change?

dungfungus said :

So, when Labor win the next election (it’s London to a brick on they will), will anything change?

Labor has always been committed to a real NBN. Have a look at Federal Labor’s NBN policy from the election last year: https://cdn.australianlabor.com.au/documents/Labors_Positive_NBN_Policy.pdf

The point is that Labor’s policy would have been implemented if Labor had been elected, but that didn’t happen and now the Coalition are continuing to roll out a second-grade network.

That link relates to “a plan”. It is a big leap from a plan to a commitment and even a commitment isn’t binding but when in opposition anything can be pledged with impunity.

As I understand it, the current NBN offers FTTH for those who want/need it but most people will be happy with the standard offer so let’s face it, nothing will really change.

Mr Steel, It is very disappointing to see you actively advertising against local businesses. Being a former TransACT employee I/ we were truly shafted when iiNet then TPG took over TransACT and shutdown the local support and call centres sacking all the local Canberra staff.

Why would you support a monopoly who does not support Canberra ? The OLD TransACT had local support and local jobs, the new one does not. 1 hour wait times to speak to someone in South Africa or the Phillipines is what you get for supporting them.

At least the NBN is an open network and an opportunity for local business to once again build on their quality local support.

You Sir, are supporting the enemy. The enemy of progress, the enemy of competition and the killer of hundreds of local jobs.

Chris Steel MLA1:18 pm 17 Jul 17

dungfungus said :

So, when Labor win the next election (it’s London to a brick on they will), will anything change?

dungfungus said :

So, when Labor win the next election (it’s London to a brick on they will), will anything change?

Labor has always been committed to a real NBN. Have a look at Federal Labor’s NBN policy from the election last year: https://cdn.australianlabor.com.au/documents/Labors_Positive_NBN_Policy.pdf

The point is that Labor’s policy would have been implemented if Labor had been elected, but that didn’t happen and now the Coalition are continuing to roll out a second-grade network.

John Moulis said :

I can remember that terrible day Abbott’s government was elected. The NBN website was completely disabled and there was a note at the top saying the site would be unavailable until the new government decided whether the NBN would go ahead or not. It stayed that way for a year. I remember the closing year of the Labor government seeing the proper FTTH NBN rolling out in Gungahlin and marginal electorates like Tasmania and hoping we would be connected before the barbarians stormed the castle. Unfortunately that race against time was lost and we are also getting the second rate NBN in September. It hardly seems worth it.

You’re got a vivid imagination.

I can remember that terrible day Abbott’s government was elected. The NBN website was completely disabled and there was a note at the top saying the site would be unavailable until the new government decided whether the NBN would go ahead or not. It stayed that way for a year. I remember the closing year of the Labor government seeing the proper FTTH NBN rolling out in Gungahlin and marginal electorates like Tasmania and hoping we would be connected before the barbarians stormed the castle. Unfortunately that race against time was lost and we are also getting the second rate NBN in September. It hardly seems worth it.

At home my non NBN download speed has normally been between 5 & 7 Mbps, which is adequate for most things but it would be nice if it were faster. At work with NBN FTTP with a maximum speed of 25 Mbps I seem to get around 18 – 22. I can’t understand why NBN has been provided to areas of Canberra that can already get up to 80 Mbps when there are areas of Tuggeranong that can’t even reach 1/10th that speed. I also can’t understand why any home would need speeds of 100 Mbps at the moment. I see some difference between home and work, but its not huge. I suspect the observed difference between 100 and 20 Mbps would be even smaller. I was talking to someone the other day who said their wifi dongle gave them a speed of 26 Mbps recently. If NBN FTTN can quadruple my home speed, I suspect that will keep me going for at least 5-10 years and if it comes with a later upgrade to FTTC that lifts speed even further, NBN as restructured by Turnbull is probably set to meet my needs for the next 20+ years.

I live Southside, and I would prefer not to have NBN if it means moving to MTM FTTN. Two options I would prefer are a) wait for Labor to get back in Government, and do all the petitioning and cage-rattling at that point, or b) pay TransACT to keep rolling out their FTTN network.

At least TransACT will do it properly the first time round rather than wasting time on VDSL over crappy copper.

Every time you hear about NBN “remediating” old copper by replacing it with new copper, that was a wasted opportunity to replace copper with fibre. They are deliberately following this course of action to make transitioning to FTTP at a later date as expensive as possible.

So for the meantime, please keep NBN FTTN out of my suburb. I am at the very end of the telephone wiring in my street, though I am lucky and my ADSL manages 2Mbps reliably. VDSL2+ will not cope.

So, when Labor win the next election (it’s London to a brick on they will), will anything change?

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