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South Australia goes with EscapeNet as ISP for 10Gbps Adelaide network

Local ISP to offer three plans ranging from AU$50 to AU$180 a month at single gigabit speeds.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor

The South Australian government has chosen local internet service provider EscapeNet for its Adelaide fibre-optic network that will facilitate speeds of up to 10Gbps across the city.

Businesses will be able to choose from a trio of options under the current plans available. The lowest-tier is a "micro-business" AU$50 a month plan that offers 200GB of data, with the option of unlimited data on the plan available for AU$100 a month. The third option is a AU$180 a month plan that has a 1TB monthly cap, with excess data sold at AU$55 for 500GB.

All plans offer 1 gigabit upload and download speeds, and have a one month minimum contract term.

"We are pleased to see local internet provider, EscapeNet, secure the contract to deliver the state government's AU$7.6 million GigCity Adelaide network," SA Science and Information Economy Minister Kyam Maher said in a statement.

"For the first time, we will see businesses, startups and entrepreneurs access ultra-fast internet that is cheaper and less restrictive than current available plans on the market, which only offer half the speed."

In the South Australian Budget announced last week, AU$2.9 million was set aside over four years to extend the network into new precincts.

The Ten Gigabit City Project uses an existing fibre-optic network jointly owned by the state government and universities, and began with a AU$4.7 million allocation in the 2016-17 state budget.

Businesses looking to get on the Adelaide network need to speak to a precinct manager.

Throughout the rest of the country, the company responsible for rolling out the National Broadband Network has said previously there is a lack of demand for gigabit plans.

Speaking last month with the American Chamber of Commerce, NBN CEO Bill Morrow said a lack of uptake for 1Gbps plans is not due to NBN's pricing model.

"The reality is that very few Australians have a use for gigabit speeds today. The fact is, the very few applications that demand this amount of data simply aren't at scale yet," Morrow said.

"In our own uptake patterns, people are gravitating to speeds that meet their needs; 83 percent of all our activated homes have opted for 25Mbps or less. In other words, only 12 percent have chosen the top tier.

"And contrary to what some may think, this is not due to price premiums imposed by NBN; those higher speeds are only slightly more, at AU$8 per month over the billing period, which is around AU$2 per week."

Of the technology options available to NBN, only fibre to the premise is currently capable of 1Gbps.

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