500,000 premises ready for nbn fixed wireless

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Thursday, 18 May, 2017

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As the fixed wireless component of the nbn reached the milestone of passing 500,000 rural and regional premises, a new report commissioned by the company has found that Australia is investing significantly more on regional broadband than its global peers.

The nbn’s fixed wireless service launched in 2011 with a target of providing access to 600,000 rural and regional premises by 2020. The network is currently actively serving around 175,000 end users nationwide.

A research report prepared by Ovum on behalf of the company found that Australia is investing nearly $7000 per household in regional and rural broadband in Australia, more than twice as much as the $3200 per rural premise its nearest rival the US is spending through the Connect America Fund.

Other major international markets, including the UK, Canada, France and Ireland, are spending less than $1000 per household on their respective regional rollouts.

“With a minimum available wholesale speed of 25 Mbps for all end users, irrespective of their location or technology platform, Australia has set the bar far higher than seen in equivalent markets,” the report found.

“Australia is notable as one of the few, non-city state, markets where government broadband objectives extend to 100% of the population. Of the other markets surveyed in our report, all have more limited ambitions for serving the last five most remote percent of the population than Australia.”

nbn CEO Bill Morrow commented that the fixed wireless network “plays a key role in ensuring there is no digital divide between urban and regional Australia and, as the Ovum report notes, is the envy of other countries around the world”.

Image courtesy nbn co.

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