NBN Half-Year Results: HFC Rollout Forges On As Some Areas Get FTTdp

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Today, NBN Co talked about the HFC rollout and using fibre-to-the-distribution point (FTTdp) for the National Broadband Network (NBN) at its half-year results presentation. Here are the key takeaways you need to know about.

The company's dogged commitment to fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) and the use of a multi technology mix approach have been attacked many times for dooming Australia to abysmal internet speeds.

Last year, NBN Co decided to move 1.2 million premises that were on the HFC footprint to FTTN. An upgraded HFC network would be faster than FTTN. Needless to say, some consumers were disappointed.

In its half-year result presentation NBN Co's CEO Bill Morrow said that the HFC footprint will increase over the coming months as the company works with its building partners to get the job done. As of December 31 of last year, 158,938 premises were ready for HFC NBN services.

Even though HFC is preferred over FTTN, the general consensus is that fibre-to-the-distribution point (FTTdp), also known as fibre-to-the-curb, is a much better technology to adopt over both of those options. An NBN Co commissioned report recommended dumping FTTN in favour of FTTdp.

Indeed, NBN Co has ramped up the adoption of FTTdp, announcing that it would deploy FTTdp to around 700,000 premises that were originally covered by Optus' HFC network. Embarrassingly, NBN Co bought the copper-based HFC network assets from Optus for $800 million in 2011 only to write it off as not fit for purpose a few years later. Now the company is going to spend more money to build over it with FTTdp.

Last week, NBN Co already announced 42 suburbs that are likely to be the first to get FTTdp. The FTTdp NBN services are expected to be activated next year.

"We've increased our focus on FTTC," Morrow said at the presentation. "When we prepare to launch in 2018, Nbn will be a world leader in this leading technology."

See Also: NBN Half-Year Results: Australians Are Still Choosing Price Over Speed


Comments

    But what's happening to the Telstra HFC network? Surely it would be an easy win to take up all those customers quickly?

      That's what I initially thought as well. They would just be able to switch over more or less immediately. From what I can gather NBN does(or pays Telstra, not sure which) remediation before a HFC area is marked RFS as there are "holes" in HFC coverage where small sections are missed. Sometimes its subdivisions that cause this or sometimes its just Telstra never bother to run the cable to certain premises (mainly MDU's suffer from this from what I can gather).

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