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Over 1 million premises sit on 25Mbps NBN connections

The 600,000 users opting for 12/1Mbps plans ensured that over 80 percent of NBN customers are now on the two slowest-speed plans.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor

As Australia passes the milestone of 2 million premises connected to the National Broadband Network (NBN), the latest NBN Wholesale Market Indicators Report from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) shows that over 1.1 million users are now on a 25/5Mbps plan.

When taken in combination with the almost 600,000 premises on a 12/1Mbps connection, more than 1.7 million NBN users are now on connections that are slower than the 30Mbps speeds rolled out by Telstra on its hybrid fibre-coaxial (HFC) network a decade ago.

The biggest change since the report's previous edition in February is the addition of nearly 50,000 HFC premises for the period ended March 31.

Of the 63,500 total users on HFC wholesaled by NBN, Telstra has 24,000 customers, while Optus and TPG are just below 18,000 premises each.

HFC has the highest percentage of users opting for 50/20 and 100/40Mbps speeds, sitting at just over 30 percent, while 20 percent of fibre-to-the-premise (FttP) users selected those speeds, and 13 percent on fibre to the node (FttN) chose plans offering up to those speeds.

But HFC is not immune from the vast majority of users going with the slowest plans available -- 41 percent of HFC premises go for 25/5Mbps, and 28 percent have 12/1Mbps.

Over the latest quarter, FttN gained an additional 220,000 users, FttP gained 65,800, fibre to the basement increased by 10,000 users, fixed-wireless added 16,700 connections, and satellite saw 14,200 users join the network.

The ACCC said aggregate network capacity on the NBN now stands at 2.15 terabits per second, up 20 percent on the 1.79 terabits reported at the end of 2016.

Earlier this week, Shadow Regional Communications Minister Stephen Jones called for an independent review of NBN's satellite services. When the Ka-band satellites were ordered by NBN under the former Labor government, then Shadow Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull termed them as "Rolls-Royce" purchases, before later deeming them to be "world-class".

In the past month, NBN has demonstrated speed increases across multiple technologies in its network. With Nokia, NBN announced it had hit 10Gbps on an FttP connection in a lab.

Later in April, with Ericsson, NetComm Wireless, and Qualcomm, an NBN wireless connection attained 1Gbps thanks to the combination of 11 time-division duplex LTE bands.

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