If you ask any Australian in the country how reliable and fast their internet is, their answer would most probably fall in the “shit” to “abysmal” range. And if you asked them online, expect to wait awhile.
This can partly be blamed on our internet overlords, NBN Co, as it rolls out an ambitious (yet antiquated) nationwide broadband product. Originally projected to be completed in 2016, the finish line has since been pushed back to 2020. While some have managed to reach the speeds NBN initially promised, many end users have struggled to get even remotely near them.
In case you thought it couldn’t get any worse, today it was revealed that something terrible might be on the horizon. According to iTNews and CommsDay, NBN Co is now floating the idea of throttling video streaming speeds in order to prioritise non-video-streaming traffic.
That means, if you spend most of your internet on watching Netflix and Instagram stories, NBN Co could intentionally make your internet slower or force you to upgrade to a more expensive plan in order to continue streaming at the same speeds. Yeah, it sucks.
Many were concerned about what this could mean for the future of Australian internet:
NBN Co did attempt to justify its position on Twitter, explaining it was looking at ways to deliver the “best possible service to customer.”
NBN Co is seeking to balance industry economics with affordability and choice for customers. The pricing review paper is not about levying additional charges on customers but rather how we can collectively deliver the best possible service to customers, including for streaming.
— nbn™ Australia (@NBN_Australia) July 2, 2019
Let’s just hope the consultation process extends beyond retail service providers so Australians can truly have their voices heard. From the internet’s reaction, their voices would probably be saying something along the lines of “just focus on getting the damn thing running properly.”