NBN Co revises Australian national broadband deployment plans

NBN Co, the company tasked with deploying Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN), has released a revised deployment schedule. The schedule reflects a switch in technology emphasis from fiber to the home (FTTH) to fiber to the node (FTTN) as mandated when the Australian government changed hands in the Fall of 2013 (see "Government shifts Australia’s National Broadband Network away from FTTH").

NBN Co, the company tasked with deploying Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN), has released a revised deployment schedule. The schedule reflects a switch in technology emphasis from fiber to the home (FTTH) to fiber to the node (FTTN) as mandated when leadership of the Australian Government changed hands in the Fall of 2013 (see "Government shifts Australia’s National Broadband Network away from FTTH").

The new schedule calls for NBN Co to connect an additional 1.9 million homes and businesses across more than 400 cities, suburbs, and towns by June 2016. The overall goal remains to connect 8 million subscribers by 2020, while generating annual revenue of AUS$4 billion.

NBN Co promises to report on its progress on a quarterly basis, as well as to provide "further detail to reflect ongoing variations brought about by process and technology improvements," in the words of the company’s announcement.

The current NBN strategy calls for a mix of FTTH, FTTN, hybrid/fiber coax (HFC), and satellite connections, in line with the current Government's goal to achieve nationwide broadband service provision as economically as possible. The currently scheduled deployments will occur via FTTH and FTTN; connections via the other two technologies will start later, NBN said.

"We're committed to bringing fast broadband to all Australians as quickly as possible. The new multi-technology approach enables us to do just that," said NBN Co CEO Bill Morrow. "Over the past year, we have carried out successful trials of a range of new technologies, revised our build processes, and are renegotiating our partner agreements. As a result of this work, we are able to provide forecasts that reflect the next phase of our network build.

"Of course, the longer the forecast, the greater the likelihood that changes will occur. That's only to be expected in a project of this magnitude," Morrow added.

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