'Telstra and G9 fibre will abandon us': NT, SA, QA

'Telstra and G9 fibre will abandon us': NT, SA, QA

Summary: Regional authorities are begging the federal government to extend the scope of Australia's fibre-to-the-node network (FTTN), fearing remote areas will be left behind as high speed broadband spreads to metropolitan areas.


Regional authorities are begging the federal government to extend the scope of Australia's fibre-to-the-node network (FTTN), fearing remote areas will be left behind as high speed broadband spreads to metropolitan areas.

A number of state and local authorities have already filed their objections to the government's planned rollout of FTTN, asking for more regional areas to be included in the deployment.

The objections have been filed with the government-chosen 'expert taskforce' be in charge of selecting which provider will eventually build the fibre-to-the-node network. The taskforce has published draft guidelines on the rollout, which will remain open to public consultation for a period of four weeks.

In a submission to the taskforce, the Northern Territory government asks the taskforce to extend the areas that will be covered by the fibre network.

"The proposal leaves to the market place the determination of where the next generation broadband services are deployed.... without effective wholesale competition in the NT there is little likelihood in providing high speed fibre-to-node [sic] networks in Darwin or Alice Springs. Both the Telstra and G9 proposals already with government exclude the NT," the submission says attributing the lack of wholesale competition to the government's decision to pick OPEL to supply WiMax connectivity in the bush.

The Queensland government has also voiced fears that some areas will be left behind in the quest for higher speed broadband.

"There may be a number of smaller regional centres outside the proposed coverage areas able to sustain a commercial investment.

"The guidelines should encourage investigations in these areas as the development of high speed broadband infrastructure proposals to cover such areas in Queensland is strongly supported," the Queensland government says in its submission.

The South Australian administration also believes that, without coverage from the FTTN deployment, the state could lose out on productivity gains from new applications, which a high-speed network could enable.

"Major application areas that will require the speeds available from a next generation network such as health, education, business and government services, typically require not only faster broadband speeds, but will also depend on coverage beyond the footprint on the cities and large regional centres," among other factors, the submission read.

Under the guidelines, the fibre rollout is planned for capital cities and major regional centres, with a separate WiMax network intended to provide higher broadband speeds for regional and bush users.

Labor also plans a fibre-to-the-node rollout, if it wins the upcoming federal election. Under its AU$4.7 billion broadband plan, fibre will be extended to 98 percent of the population.

Topics: Broadband, Government, Government AU, Telcos, Telstra, NBN, IT Employment

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    Can we please just roll out to the majority of the population first and then start getting all political and considerate?

    There is no need to stall this any further on the states part, it is only going to make the roll out slower for the rest of us and ultimately, regional areas.

    Not to mention the stupidity of rolling out fibre accross a massive state such as WA. I beleive a good wireless infrastructure would do well in those parts.
  • Why should we care about the country?

    People in the outback have been holding the majority of Australia back for years. It's time that they realise that isolation is an inevitable part of being backward rednecks. They are nothing but a drain on the economy.
  • Why you should care

    Tell you what.

    All us rednecks will let you have your trendy FTTN. What we will do is not send any food until you give us some. We will also keep our mining and ag export profits etc etc etc.

    Sound fair?

    Quite possibly the most stupid, inane and introspective post I have ever read on the net...and it is a big arsed place the net. Drain on the economy ROTFLMAO.

  • Billion... not Million

    Labor also plans a fibre-to-the-node rollout, if it wins the upcoming federal election. Under its AU$4.7 million broadband plan, fibre will be extended to 98 percent of the population.

    think its ment to be $4.7 Billion, not million
  • What do you expect

    What does everyone expect after Lib's sold off national infastructure to make quick buck. Everyone from Gov dept's, business and citizens are crying foul about not having access to High speed internet in low profit area's.

    You can't have your cake and eat it. The harsh reality of corporate world is that companies are not going to provide things out of the goodness of their hearts. It has to make a comercial return and in the bush that is not going to happen. Has nothing to do with being biased against people in the bush.
  • two prong response

    Private sector Investment should stick to metro areas and Regional areas must be built up by the government. This way we wont be paying through the arse for broadband in the city but the regional people can have their slice too.
  • Two Pronged. I like it.

    Not a bad comment. That seems to make sense. So simple.
    It'll never happen though.
    Private simply won't do it because of the dollars. No Argument, we can't blame them, this is business, and it's just the way things are.
    No commercial return? No investment.
    The real problem is the goverment, any government, can always point the finger at any Telco and pull out a line like 'Don't talk to us, they're the ones that provide the services.'
    Any Government in power would use that line, and unfortunately, our regional buddies are in a bit of a pickle.
    Hopefully the Wimax actually works, because the chances are slim to none about regional getting any form of Fibre.
  • Idiot

    You are an absolute idiot. Dole bludger probably. The wealth of this nation comes from isolated and rural areas, not from people like you. Rural areas are dismissed and neglected by all areas of Governments, especially by the inept and corrups Beattie QLD Govt.
  • Idiot

    The wealth of this country comes from the isolated and rural areas of the continent yet those areas are always neglected by Governments of all persuasions, especially the inept and corrupt Beattie Labor Govt of QLD.

    For someone who would write such garbage, you ought to learn something about this country - probably a lazy dole bludger.
  • A simple Plan

    Unfortunately hindsight is 20:20 but this is what should have happened.

    When Telstra was sold off the actual copper infrastructure was retained in government ownership or as a separate entity and maintained the quality of the service for everyone to wholesale including Telstra.

    Telstra and all other companies would then be required to build their own products around this infrastructure and wholesale the last mile from the government.

    If a company decided to build new technology services that no longer relied on the copper that would be their prerogative and would own the service and not be forced to wholesale.

    In 20 - 50 years the copper network will be dead and all of the other companies would have chosen to be niche players or national carriers and people would have a choice of multiple carriers running outside their front door.
  • Advance Australia.

    Carlos, you are correct in your suggestions, and more action should have been taken to avoid WW2. We all know that with hindsight, that is certainly agreed.

    Facts are that Telstra owners bought, obtained and paid for, the entire facilities of Telstra. If the Government considers it desirable, and is prepared to pay the required price, I am sure Telstra owners would consider to sell the last mile of copper back to the Government.

    Naturally, the required price would be considerable but understanding the Governments large resources ( demonstrated by the donation of one billion dollars to Opel) this buyback, I expect, could be attempted by Government.

    All should agree that if competition is to operate fairly in our democracy a company that excels with their business and obtains a dominating position, should not be then regulated in an unfair way to assist weaker and less well preforming opponents.

    Finally, let us hope that Mr. Rudd and Senator Conroy give Australia's Telstra a "fair go" and allow it to deliver the fast fibre broadband Australians demand and deserve.