New Connections - December 2011
The newsletter for access seekers
Year in review
Season's greetings. It has been quite a year of success for us at NBN Co, with thousands of customers now connected and enjoying the speeds of our fibre and interim satellite services. Perhaps more importantly, over 500,000 premises are either under construction or starting construction within the next 12 months.
We have also commenced construction on the Fixed Wireless Network, announcing the first five communities to receive our high-speed fixed wireless services. Ultimately, we expect to service half a million Australian premises with Fixed Wireless services using the latest 4G technology, scheduled to be completed by 2015.
Our commercial and regulatory framework is now well progressed, we have published our Wholesale Broadband Agreement (WBA) and NBN Co's Special Access Undertaking has been lodged with the ACCC. In preparing the WBA, we have engaged extensively with all levels of the Australian telecommunications industry, starting back in October 2010 and involving 5 rounds of consultation, 5 separate discussion drafts and many hundreds of hours of face to face discussions.
The Special Access Undertaking (SAU) sets out the terms that will govern access to the NBN Access Service over the 30 years of our Corporate Plan. The SAU has been lodged with the ACCC and the ACCC must apply the statutory criteria in deciding whether to approve the SAU, which only comes into effect once approved. The SAU makes commitments in relation to how we will price the NBN Access Service over the long term, key non-price conditions of supply, and ensures that we will recover no more than prudently incurred costs. Importantly, the SAU is designed to confer powers and functions on the ACCC to create a transparent and efficient mechanism which can be used by Access Seekers where agreement cannot be reached on non-price terms that are not covered by the SAU. This is designed to provide the industry a degree of certainty on how NBN Co will operate its wholesale business and provide the framework necessary to achieve uniform national pricing of services provided by us to Access Seekers. For a description of the NBN Access Service, please refer to the SAU.
It is exciting to see innovative uses of the NBN starting to spring up even in this relatively early stage of our rollout. This month we feature in our NBN Live section of the newsletter the "Ageing Well" initiative by the Victorian Government in Brunswick. The project is developing a broadband-enabled exercise program that aims to promote health and wellbeing among older people, potentially enabling them to stay in their homes longer and promote social inclusion.
We wish everyone a safe and happy festive season and look forward to a prosperous 2012.
Head of Product Management and Industry Relations
Wholesale Broadband Agreement
NBN Co has published the Wholesale Broadband Agreement (WBA), the contractual vehicle to supply products and services to our wholesale customers. After extensive industry consultation the WBA is now available for execution.
NBN Co's Small Business Offering
Get your first glimpse at NBN Co's Small Business Offering that we are planning to provide our Service Providers. This product will allow you to offer an affordable entry level business-grade service to your customers. The Small Business feature enhancements include business grade service levels, higher internet speeds than the existing residential offering and multi-line telephony capabilities.
NBN Co recognises that end users in the business and enterprise segments run business-critical applications over their broadband networks and need greater confidence that their service will be reliable. Our small business offering is a service that is designed to provide higher reliability, guaranteed bandwidth and faster upstream speeds to end users, many of whom are currently using residential grade access services.
Higher reliability and bandwidth can enable small business end users to connect with their customers and suppliers to run their businesses more efficiently. Increased availability and restoration times could enable Service Providers to deliver business grade service levels to small business end users beyond the traditional metro areas with the NBN fibre network covering 93% of Australian premises.
The Small Business offering is designed to support high speed internet access and multi-line telephony. The following existing Traffic Class 4 asymmetric speeds will be available, benefiting small businesses with both higher downstream and upstream speeds for data upload:
- 12/1 Megabits per second,
- 25/5 Megabits per second,
- 25/10 Megabits per second,
- 50/20 Megabits per second, and
- 100/40 Megabits per second.1
Incremental Traffic Class 1 capacities to support the key end user applications for small businesses; including multi-line telephony and high speed internet access will also be offered.
Lost connectivity often means lost business. Therefore all of our business products will be supported with optional seven day and extended hour enhanced service levels. This could enable faster restoration times than many small businesses have enjoyed to date.
NBN Live showcases applications that could benefit from the National Broadband Network. In this month's NBN Live we showcase the launch of the 'Ageing Well at Home with Broadband' project in Brunswick as part of the Victorian Government's Broadband-Enabled Innovation Program.
Market Perspectives shares the latest trends and insights from around the world. In December's Market Perspectives we focus on the Sandvine Global Internet Phenomena Spotlight.
Our December Ready for Service Plan is now available for download. The Monthly Ready for Service Rollout Plan is released each month, covering the Rollout Regions that have entered design and construction within the Fibre and Wireless footprints.
1NBN Co is designing the NBN to be capable of delivering these speeds to NBN Co's wholesale customers (telephone and internet service providers) via fibre, fixed wireless and satellite. Speeds actually achieved by retail customers (end users) will depend on a number of factors including the quality of their equipment and in-premises connection, the broadband plans offered by their service provider and how their service provider designs its network to cater for multiple end users.
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