NBN Co strategic review to be released tomorrow

NBN Co strategic review to be released tomorrow

Summary: Ahead of the release of NBN Co's strategic review tomorrow, NBN Co's chief operations officer Greg Adcock has confirmed that no fibre-to-the-node trials were conducted as part of the review.


Ahead of tomorrow's release of the long-awaited report from NBN Co's 60-day strategic review, NBN Co chief operations officer Greg Adcock has said that no fibre-to-the-node trials were conducted as part of the review.

The strategic review — commenced by NBN Co executive chairman Ziggy Switkowski following the Coalition's election victory in September — is expected to be released after a board meeting of NBN Co tomorrow. Prior to the announcement on the expected future of the AU$37.4 billion National Broadband Network (NBN) project, several key executives have this morning appeared before a Senate Select committee, facing questioning from former Australian Communications Minister Stephen Conroy on the status of the review and the wider project.

NBN Co's head of corporate Kevin Brown indicated that although the first draft document was handed to the government on December 2, it was returned to NBN Co before public release. It is expected that a few more changes will be made to the document, including a redaction of commercial-in-confidence material that NBN Co believes would make it tougher to renegotiate with vendors, and with Telstra and Optus.

Although NBN Co has been looking to conduct trials of fibre-to-the-node technology as it considers switching to use Telstra's existing copper lines instead of continuing the fibre-to-the-premises rollout, Adcock told the committee that no trials were conducted as part of the strategic review.

At several points, the NBN Co executives were questioned about a document prepared for the Department of Communications by NBN Co for the incoming Coalition government on the Coalition's broadband policy. The document, which was obtained by ZDNet, revealed concerns that the company has in achieving the Coalition's objectives of delivering 25Mbps to all Australians by 2016 and 50Mbps to all Australians by 2019.

At each turn, the executives declined to discuss the reports, stating that because the document had not been published in full, they could not confirm the accuracy of the document.

"I've seen the articles, and I've seen the quotes in the articles, but I haven't seen the documents the articles refers to," NBN Co's chief marketing officer Kieran Cooney said.

He suggested that the document might be a draft, or different to a document that NBN Co has on hand.

Cooney said that as the document was prepared for the department, it would be up to the department rather than NBN Co to release the document in full.

Topics: NBN, Government, Government AU


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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  • NBN? What a joke!

    The results of these inquiries will be as fraudulent as the NBN CO.'s board and the Fraudband we will receive from a Government without any vision to the future. Sending us back the "copper Age" is a waste of taxpayers money.
    Malcolm Turnbull should change to Minister of Finance where he has some qualifications and experience because he is way out of his depth as Minister for Communications.
    His understanding of communications would be lost once you went beyond 2 empty cans joined by a piece of string.
    • Turnbull's incompetence is surprising

      It's surprising because he used to own the internet service provider, OzEmail.

      You'd think he would have learned something there.

      Or maybe he is just playing dumb, because somebody dumber above him is telling him what to do.

      I've heard rumors of people above him, who are moulded from the DLP, who joined politics after leaving a monastery, who are rather anti-technology, and don't like all this internet stuff.
  • Turnbull: You tell me how you're going to achieve this

    The home of the next decade:

    Two or three televisions showing 4K pictures in different rooms of the house. People surfing at the same time. Every appliance in the house and every light bulb connected to the internet. Even the humble telephone will be IP, and video calls will be much more commonplace.

    Look around your local department store. Notice all those 4K TVs hanging on the wall. Soon all TVs will be 4K, and they'll all be internet connected with Chromecast and other platforms. For 4K UHD TV, they'll need 15Mpbs per channel as a starting point, and that's if you take the lowest quality, highly compressed version. You need more bandwidth if you want to see something of good quality.

    Tell me, how is this 25Mpbs network, or even 50Mbps, going to achieve the above scenario? You really need 100Mbps as a starting point.

    Mr Turnbull, the era of old media, that is, television and paper newsprint, is over. Your proposed network doesn't handle the basic household needs in ten years from now, let alone business use.

    Your FttN proposal is going to be a drag on the economy of your country for decades ahead. You need to eat humble pie and revert back to the original 100% fiber FttP proposal, before it's too late. Do it for the sake of your nation.