Telstra gives HFC network 100Mbps boost

Summary:Although the death knell has tolled for Telstra's hybrid fibre-coaxial (HFC) network with the signing of the $11 billion deal with the National Broadband Network Company (NBN Co), Telstra has committed to upgrading the network to provide speeds of 100 megabits per second by next month.

Although the death knell has tolled for Telstra's hybrid fibre-coaxial (HFC) network with the signing of the $11 billion deal with the National Broadband Network Company (NBN Co), Telstra has committed to upgrading the network to provide speeds of 100 megabits per second by next month.

Telstra today confirmed a report by iTNews that the company would follow up on its 2009 HFC upgrade to DOCSIS (data-over-cable service interface specification) 3.0 in Melbourne with upgrades in Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth and the Gold Coast by mid December.

"The December upgrade is Telstra's latest step to ensure its network delivers the high quality and reliability its customers expect," Telstra said in a statement. "Last financial year, the volume of data consumed over the average BigPond fixed internet connection more than doubled due to uptake of multiple internet-connected devices in homes, and growth in online media."

DOCSIS 3.0 allows for higher download speeds of up to 100Mbps through channel bonding, to provide extra capacity. 3.0 also provides support for IPv6, which Telstra began offering to enterprise, government and wholesale customers in September.

Although the company could not yet provide figures on the cost of the upgrade, the Melbourne overhaul in 2009 to approximately one million homes cost the telco $300 million. The price for consumers will be made available closer to the launch, Telstra said.

As part of its definitive agreement with NBN Co, Telstra will migrate broadband customers from the HFC network to the NBN over the next 10 years, as the NBN fibre rolls out to those areas. Telstra will keep the HFC in place, however, for cable television services.

While the telco giant was the first to upgrade its Melbourne HFC to DOCSIS3.0 in 2009, it lagged behind major rival Optus in Sydney and Brisbane, where Optus completed its upgrade in August last year.

Topics: Telcos, Telstra

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Armed with a degree in Computer Science and a Masters in Journalism, Josh keeps a close eye on the telecommunications industry, the National Broadband Network, and all the goings on in government IT.

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