High-speed broadband subs pass 5m in 1Q21

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Monday, 16 November, 2020

High-speed broadband subs pass 5m in 1Q21

The number of higher speed (50 Mbps or higher) broadband services in Australia surpassed 5 million last quarter to reach 5.2 million, according to the ACCC.

The regulator’s latest Wholesale Market Indicators Report found that the proportion of subscriptions to plans above 50 Mbps reached 67.2% in the September quarter, up from just 16.2% as of the end of 2017.

The report shows that 50 Mbps plans remain the most popular individual category, accounting for 57.5% of all connections. In addition, the significant majority of new activations during the quarter were for 50 Mbps or higher plans.

While there has been a growth in popularity of very high speed plans of 100 Mbps, 250 Mbps or 500 Mbps, they still only represent just over 2% of all services.

The report found that more than 7.8 million residential customers are already connected to the nbn, after the activation of 387,410 new services in the September 2020 quarter.

Telstra continues to dominate the market with 45.7% of all retail connections to the nbn, but TPG Telecom has emerged as a stronger competitor following its merger with Vodafone, accounting for 24.4% of all wholesale services. Optus and Vocus market shares were relatively stable at 15.4% and 7.2% respectively.

On the wholesale side, the total connectivity virtual circuit (CVC) bandwidth acquired by RSPs grew by a further 10% to just over 20 Mbps, with CVC per user growing nearly 5% from 2.47 Mbps to 2.59 Mbps.

This reflects NBN Co’s commitment to offer its retail service provider customers a temporary 40% CVC increase at no additional cost.

ACCC Chair Rod Sims said the results were a positive sign.

“It is good to see a continuing increase in the number of products on offer, giving savvy consumers a range of differing plans to choose from,” he said. “It is vital that broadband providers offer a variety of plans for all needs and budgets. Consumers should choose the plan that best works for them, and that doesn’t always mean the fastest.”

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/anyaberkut

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