Australia has grumbled and NBN Co has finally listened. If we're going to have trouble connecting the NBN at full speed, the least they can do it make it cheaper.
Tagged With internet speeds
Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.
One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.
NBN Co has revealed it is working on new "confidential" pricing models with internet and phone providers in an attempt to improve the network's bang-for-buck. By the end of the year, a new wholesale access model is expected to be announced that has the potential to end the "tax on megabits". Here's what you need to know.
For the residents of one of Sydney's tallest buildings, the arrival of the national broadband network has spelt the end of fast and affordable high-speed internet. Six years ago, the residents of Elan tower in Kings Cross paid Telstra to weave "state of the art" hybrid fibre coaxial (HFC) cables through the 40 floors, and since then have been enjoying download speeds of 100Mbps.
But last year, NBN ordered Telstra to scrap the HFC system and move customers onto its fibre-to-the-building (FTTB) technology, which it had installed using the building's 20-year-old copper phone lines.
Residents of Elan Tower in Sydney's Kings Cross are used to 100Mbps download speeds, thanks to the hybrid fibre coaxial cable they paid Telstra to install six years ago.
Now the building is being forced onto NBN's copper-based fibre-to-the-building network. The copper telephone wire in the building, travelling up 40 floors, is 20 years old.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has pledged to get tough on any Internet Service Providers that mislead consumers about National Broadband Network speeds. But how do you know if you’re getting a good deal when you connect to the NBN? How do you know if you’ll be getting the high-speed connection you were promised?
Telecommunications companies are misleading customers over broadband internet speeds and the worst offenders will likely face prosecution over dodgy advertising by the end of the year, the consumer watchdog says.
Chairman Rod Sims said the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) would conduct "compliance sweeps" of broadband marketing and telco websites later this year in a bid to keep telcos honest about speeds available on the national broadband network.
In a recent blog post, NBN Co attempted to justify why it is rolling out fibre to the node (FTTN) rather than fibre to the premises (FTTP). NBN Co says that FTTP is too expensive for Australia, claiming that Australia is not on a level playing field with other countries that have FTTP.
But NBN Co's commentary is misleading, and omits a number of key facts. A more careful and accurate examination of the facts shows that Australia is indeed comparable with other countries that have chosen FTTP.
Choosing an NBN plan seems easy — and it should be — but the NBN is an unruly beast and, as loads of people are finding out, it can be hard to get what you pay for.
Issues with congestion and the limitations of FTTN technology can mean that while you may sign on for a 100Mbps NBN plan, there are a number of factors that determine how frequently you’ll get 100Mbps, if at all. This isn’t to say you should avoid the NBN, just that it is worth dipping in a toe before you dive in headfirst. No contract NBN plans are the solution.
New charging models could mean that congestion on the National Broadband Network (NBN) will be reduced – but only if the biggest internet service providers (ISPs) get on board.
Last week, NBN officially rolled out a change to the pricing model which it uses. A quick reminder: NBN itself acts as a wholesaler and doesn't deal directly with individual customers who need internet access. Instead, it sells capacity on the network to ISPs, who then create packages to sell to consumers.
The NBN is a complicated piece of technology -- the largest infrastructure project in Australian history. From its inception in 2007 as a mostly-fibre network to the multi-technology mix of 2017, it's evolved into a Byzantine mess both for customers to understand and for internet service providers to manage. The main pain point is congestion -- a lack of virtual capacity on the network that slows some connections to a crawl. It's bad enough that some smaller ISPs are provisioning their own networks rather than relying on existing backhaul from NBN and their own competitors.
No one said building a fast, nation-wide broadband network would be easy. But imagine if the NBN skipped your house or business because it wasn't easy enough? A report by the ABC's Emily Laurence has revealed that if a property is "categorised as Service Class 0", NBN Co will almost certainly give it a miss, even if you're in a rollout area.
A recent report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) also flags Australia’s broadband speeds as among the worst in the OECD, beating only Mexico, Chile and Greece in terms of internet speed and penetration. This raises questions on NBN’s continued use of fibre to the node (FTTN) over a large proportion of the total NBN footprint.
Australia continues to fall behind most of the developed world when it comes to home broadband internet speeds. According to Akamai's latest State of the Internet Report, our internet connection speeds are now slower than 50 other nations, including the likes of Thailand, Estonia, Bulgaria and Kenya. Here's the full list of countries with better internet than Australia. (It makes for painful reading.)
The NBN comes in many shapes and sizes. In addition to the myriad technology types being deployed, there are also different NBN "tiers" that determine the speed you receive and the price you pay. A recent study by customer satisfaction research group Canstar Blue has revealed the most affordable plans for each available speed tier - from 12Mbps all the way up to 100Mbps. Here is the list.