Labor and Coalition broadband policies:
What’s the difference?


Blue and red fibre optical cables

This article is by Rod Tucker, director of the Institute for a Broadband-Enabled Society at the University of Melbourne. It originally appeared on The Conversation.

analysis Broadband – in the shape of the National Broadband Network (NBN) – remains a key point of difference between Labor and the Coalition’s policies going into the federal election.

Our politicians are not paying lip service when it comes to these differences. There are significant variations in cost, in delivery types, in download and upload speeds, in business opportunities, customer experience and the so-called “future-proofing” of the network, depending on which version of the NBN we continue with. So what are they, and what do you need to know?

At the 2010 election, Opposition leader Tony Abbott threatened to scrap the NBN. But under Malcolm Turnbull’s deft handling of the Shadow Communications Minister’s portfolio, the Coalition’s Broadband Policy, released in April this year, recognises the need for a national, wholesale broadband network and shares many characteristics with the existing NBN model as conceived under Labor.

As with Labor’s NBN, an NBN under the Coalition will be a wholesale network, open to any retail service provider that can connect to the network. There are some differences in pricing strategies between the two policies, primarily around whether prices are uniform across the country (as in the Labor policy) or capped (as in the Coalition’s policy) but the service model is broadly the same.

Both Labor and the Coalition will use newly-launched satellites to take broadband to remote areas, and fixed wireless to cover rural areas, where wired access such as fibre or copper is either technically unfeasible or economically unviable. But the key difference between the two policies is the network technology to be used in urban areas.

Labor will continue rolling out a Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) network – whereby optic fibre extends all the way to homes and businesses – while the Coalition policy calls for a shift to Fibre to the Node (FTTN) – whereby fibre is delivered to local “cabinets”, called nodes, and copper wire runs from these nodes to houses and businesses – in brownfield sites (i.e. established urban areas); and FTTP in greenfield sites (i.e. new housing estates).

Despite some delays in the rollout of Labor’s FTTP network, NBNCo – the company tasked with building NBN infrastructure – says the completion date for the project remains fixed at 2021, and that the total cost will be A$44.1 billion.

The Coalition’s policy calls for completion of the rollout of its FTTN network by 2019, at a total cost of A$29.5 billion. The difference in cost between Labor’s network and the Coalition’s network per premises is about A$1,000. To put this in perspective, the recent rollout of smart electricity meters in Victoria cost about A$1,200 per premises.

In essence, the Coalition’s FTTN network will cost two-thirds as much as Labor’s FTTP network, based on the official cost estimates in each policy, but will be only one-twentieth as fast.

The Coalition’s FTTN network will provide download speeds of 50 Mbps (allowing you to download an hour-long high-definition television show in a few minutes) to 90% of connected homes, while Labor’s FTTP network will initially provide download speeds up to 1 Gbps – 20 times faster than the Coalition’s FTTN network.

Labor’s FTTP network will provide upload speeds of 400 Mbps – 40 times faster than FTTN. Upload speed is important for activities which require you to send data from your computer, such as video calls. The speed difference between the two networks comes down to the fact the Coalition’s FTTN model relies on the existing copper connections between the node and the premises, while in Labor’s FTTP network, the entire connection is by fibre.

The table below summarises some of the key differences between policies:


In recent years, engineers in laboratories around the world have developed technological marvels to extract the maximum capacity out of copper, and these marvels are to be incorporated in the Coalition’s network using very-high-bit-rate digital subscriber line (VDSL) technology.

VDSL’s higher speeds result from the use of different bands of frequency to voice calls, allowing data for multiple applications (such as internet connection and high-definition television) to be transmitted on the same copper wires. It builds upon – and is faster than – current technology used in asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL) networks.

But the download and upload speeds achievable with VDSL are a tiny fraction of the speeds achievable using FTTP.

Additionally, with VDSL in FTTN networks, the further the premises are located from the node, the slower the speed. In addition, the speed can be degraded if water gets into the cables after heavy rain – as some users notice in today’s ADSL network.

While few households need 1Gbps today (the average internet connection speed in Australia is currently 4.2 Mbps) the historical demand for broadband network bandwidth has grown at about 30% – 40% per annum.

Today’s ADSL2+ network provides around 10-20 Mbps and many households find this to be barely sufficient, especially when two or three family members simultaneously access high-bandwidth applications, such as video on demand, gaming, or various kinds of home office applications.

Using historical growth figures, and allowing for future generations of ultra-high definition television, multi-view services, together with multiple TV displays in a single household, in-home video conferencing and so on, it’s likely that domestic broadband domestic customers will be seeking bandwidths of more than 100 Mbps by 2020 and about 1 Gbps by 2035.


Many business customers will require these bandwidths much sooner, as they begin to take full advantage of new broadband applications and services, and to develop innovative new online products. Historically, the development of applications tends to follow the provision of infrastructure. Applications that use increased speed tend to be developed only when those speeds are in existence or imminent.

Based on these numbers, the Coalition’s FTTN network will be obsolete by 2020, and will require major expensive upgrades after this. While it’s possible telecommunications engineers may find ways to squeeze a little bit more speed out of copper, the only way to move beyond the speed limitations of FTTN is to move the nodes closer to the home. In practice, this ultimately means an upgrade from FTTN to FTTP.

For those who need more than 50 Mbps from the FTTN network, the Coalition’s policy provides for a “fibre-on-demand” upgrade path, in which a customer pays for a fibre to be installed from the node in the street to the premises.

The cost of this to the individual could be in the region of A$1,000-A$5,000, depending on the distance of the node from the premises. Future upgrades of Labor’s FTTP to 10 Gbps and beyond will require simple exchange of the user terminal in the home, at a cost typically in the region of A$100-A$200.

The Coalition’s “fibre-on-demand” strategy raises the spectre of a digital divide between households, businesses and regions that can afford to pay for the upgrade and those that cannot.

To illustrate this, a graphic design business that uploads and downloads data to its customers, and happens to be located close to a node, will be in a much better business position that a competitor 500 metres down the road. This will arguably impede the economic benefits of the network as a whole, limiting the application of health, education and productivity-boosting applications.

This will mean the saving of A$1,000 per premise offered by the Coalition could easily be wiped out by the loss of long-term economic benefits of a high-capacity FTTP network.

Some commentators have argued the increasing popularity of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets decreases the need for the NBN.

But a FTTP broadband network will facilitate this rapid growth in mobile broadband. Telephone companies around the world are now enhancing their mobile networks with an ever-increasing number of small wireless base stations located on street corners, in shopping centres, offices, and even in customers’ homes, using fibre connections from the small base stations to their network.

While NBNCo is not yet offering backhaul services (transporting data to a point that would allow it to be be distributed over a network) to mobile operators, Labor’s FTTP network is ideally suited for this. Because the Coalition’s FTTN network relies on existing copper cable to the home, it is generally unsuitable for wireless backhaul.

Energy consumption is often overlooked in communications network planning, but is becoming increasingly important. The power consumption of the Labor’s FTTN network will be about 70 Megawatts and the Coalition’s FTTN network will consume twice that – about 140 Megawatts.

The cost of this extra power is relatively small compared with the installation cost of the network, and this comparison does not include end-user devices such as computers and TV displays. But the increased electrical power consumption of the Coalition’s FTTN network will have a greenhouse impact approaching that of a city the size of Launceston in Tasmania.

The Coalition’s broadband policy offers a lower-cost network that will provide customers with modest improvements in broadband services in the shorter term; whereas the Coalition’s network will create a new digital divide and require major upgrades soon after it is completed. The cost difference between these two alternatives is about A$1,000 per premises.

Labor promises a more future-proof solution that will cost more at the outset, but will stimulate broadband developments in government, business, and entertainment, and has potential to serve Australia beyond 2050.

A version of this article was published on the University of Melbourne’s Election Watch 2013 website. Rod Tucker's research is financially supported by the Australian Research Council, Alcatel-Lucent, and the Victorian Government. The Institute for a Broadband-Enabled Society has received cash and in kind support from a range of companies including Optus, NBN Co, Ericsson, Microsoft, Cisco and Google, through its industry partner program and research collaborations.

This article was originally published at The Conversation. Read the original article.

The Conversation


  1. Hmmm, can the Lib Supporters put down their ideologies and face the cold hard facts in this article or will they pick and scratch at minor details in an effort to avoid reality?

    • The last line of table 1 is also incorrect, both plans allow competing networks, it’s just in the Labor NBN case the network must be open access.

  2. A few spelling mistakes in the tables
    Sights = Sites
    Compering = Competing

    But in terms of commenting on the content…
    LNP plan; Date of completion 2019. Date of obsolescence 2020. Upgrade cost $2k-5k
    Pretty much says it all; short term plan

  3. typo here too

    “… The power consumption of the Labor’s FTTN network will be about 70 Megawatts and the Coalition’s FTTN network will consume twice that – about 140 Megawatts.”

    should be FTTP

  4. Copy and Paste from the Quigley-Whirlpool article, since this is the correct place to discuss it (other than at The Conversation itself):

    I thought it was a pretty good article detailing the major similarities and differences, in a format and with language that the ordinary person (read: voter) can understand.

    However, I can tell that people are going to attack the “50Mbps” figure, as it’s, as Turnbull promises, actually “a minimum 50Mbps”. I guess that if you are lucky enough to have your nature strip graced with the FTTN cabinet, you might achieve near 100Mbps?

    I note, however, that the comparison takes the two policies’s promises at face-value, and doesn’t delve into their deliverability – such as whether a Coalition government can obtain the Telstra network for free, such as whether Fibre on Demand is viable, such as whether guaranteed minimum speeds of 25Mbps or 50Mbps are achievable over the copper, and such as whether the timeframes of either policy are accurate. However, in that way, I think it is a fair treatment, as while it takes one party’s claims of its policy outcomes as true, it also completely ignores claims made by one party of the other party’s policy, and thus provides a good analysis of the two policies for worlds where their distinct assumptions hold.

    • If both versions were still at the proposal stage back in 2007 then a fair enough assessment.

      But in this case we have one side that’s done all the planning, negotiations, viability testing etc & though behind at present is a work in progress that is actually delivering the desired service results displayed in those tables.
      The other side’s FTTN component is still at the starting gate & consists entirely of politician’s promises & estimations based on overseas projects which IMO places it entirely in the theoretical basket, it’s aims & results yet to be proven as accurate, practical, or even fully achievable here in OZ.
      First it was Demolish, then Wireless, now Node + FODemand. (hope it’s written in blood, Tony)

      A case of bird in the hand?

    • That is not an easy read, however. While Nick’s work reads like a thesis, Rod’s work reads like a short essay. If I was going to try to enlighten someone about the NBN who wasn’t highly knowledgeable of the topic, I’d have them read Rod’s article. It’s almost the perfect summary I’ve seen yet.

  5. Gee it is nice to see a logical comparison of the two offerings for improved broadband. It is also good to see someone looking past the immediate cost and looking at the future cost and benefits.

    As Renai has correctly pointed out on a number of occasions the Coalition offering will work very nicely.

    Ultimately however the Labor sponsored NBN is going to be more cost effective and will contribute quicker to our economic growth amongst other things.

    Now if that is being an NBN fanboi I eagerly plead guilty.

    • Well, it would work very nicely if your only aim were to increase the minimum or average internet download speed in Australia, to meet short-term demand. But I think that Labor’s NBN vision is so much greater than that, and that’s why they have convinced me.

      The Coalition wants to widen the door to places you already know and travel to, Labor wants not only to do that but also to open new doors to places you cannot yet imagine.

    • … and had the result been the other way around it would have been extremely creditable and very impartial, I’m guessing?

      • Well, it is a pretty biased article. Ignoring the likely $billions that Telstra will charge for the copper, plus the likelihood of a significant number of lines being unsuitable for VDSL and requiring replacement, plus the likelihood that it will take at least one electoral term to turn NBNCo from a FTTP rollout to an FTTN one, the article is really bending over backwards to favour the Coalition plan…

        • It also ignored the $11b paid to Telstra to shut down their network, which is a known unlike total conjecture on what Telstra will or will not charge for copper for FTTN use, but that’s ok I take it?

          • Incorrect… I would have thought you’d at least understand the basics by now :/

            The payment to Telstra is for customer migration, the right to acquire backhaul and space in exchanges, as well as pits and duct leasing.

            Telstra also agreed to structural separation…

            Regardless, when people are finally on the superior and faster fibre the obsolete copper will rightfully be able be put out to pasture where it belongs…

            As I have told you probably 30 times, it’s known as technological progression.

            And I’ll ask you for about the 30th time (for not one answer) have you never replaced (or in your speak “shut down”) old items at your place with better, newer stuff.

          • Yes got the diversion from the subject matter I discussed, it’s quite simple if you want to include the Telstra payment into the total cost of the NBN it is $44.1b plus $11b.

            The Coalition total cost is $29b plus $11b assuming any deal to use copper for FTTN is contained within $11b, if it does cost more then anything less than the difference between $44.1b and $29b means they are still ahead.

          • Hungry again I see…

            Another spoon, open wide…!

            I just explained what the $11B is for, please do not keep posting ‘comments which inject demonstrably false information into the debate’ by suggesting otherwise… thank you.

            You may swallow now.

          • How do you get shut “down their network” from this:

            Under the Proposed Transaction (including the regulatory undertakings given by Telstra to the ACCC), Telstra will significantly change the way it operates certain parts of its fixed line business by disconnecting progressively Copper Services and HFC Broadband Services, commencing to acquire wholesale services from NBN Co and providing NBN Co with access to large volumes of certain types of Telstra’s infrastructure. This will mean that Telstra will substantially rely on the NBN Fibre Network to offer fixed line services to premises in the NBN Fibre Footprint.

            Telstra will continue to retain and operate its Next G wireless network, Next IP™ core fibre network, backhaul fibre network and HFC Cable Network (for delivery of Pay TV Services). Telstra will also retain and operate its Copper Network and will continue to provide broadband services over its HFC Cable Network as relevant outside areas where the NBN Fibre Network has been deployed. Telstra will also retain ownership of the infrastructure accessed by NBN Co (except for Lead‑in Conduits).

            Considering there will be no “NBN Fibre Footprint”, apart from what gets build by NBNCo, of course Turnbull will need to renegotiate…

          • I like the way you ask the question ‘how do get shut down their network from this’ then do a massive copy & paste explaining how they are shutting down their network as the NBN rollout progresses.

          • “Copper Services” and “Copper Network” are two totally different things.

            As defined in the Memorandum:

            Copper Network – Telstra’s copper-based customer access network, which is used to deliver standard voice telephony and broadband services.

            Copper Services – retail and wholesale telephony, data, broadband and access services provided by Telstra on the Copper Network and/or the HFC Cable Network (but not Pay TV Services on the HFC Cable Network).

            Keep those definitions in mind, and re-read the 2 paragraphs I posted before.

            It’s a pretty epic read (and not in a good way, but they had to do it as it’s the Telstra directors recommendation to shareholders), but if you really want to understand what the deal actually was, you’ll need to read it:


            You would be right thinking what you do based only off the information given to you from Malcolm, but the info he is using isn’t the whole story.

            Telstra have plenty of room to move on any negotiation with Malcolm, because the value of the entire CAN has never been quoted below $9b, and goes as high as $33b (The first figure from the ACCC….which Telstra contesed, the second was what Telstra originally wanted from the NBNCo deal for the full CAN).

            It’s anyone’s guess what the actual figure will be, but Malcolm will need to cough up more dough for the deal.

          • What is it about when the NBN rollout reaches 90% of premises Ready for Service of a rollout region (approx 3000 premises) Telstra has agreed to disconnect copper services and HFC BB services within 18 months from that Ready for Service date and this disconnection is permanent, you don’t understand?

          • They agreed to disconnect “Services”, not the “Network”.

            I think that’s the part you’re having trouble with, they are two separate and distinct things.

          • Re: “They agreed to disconnect “Services”, not the “Network”.

            I’m curious. In a rural area currently served by ADSL1 only & not slated for fibre or wireless will we be forced onto satellite or allowed to continue on our present copper service by either party?
            I’m just over 6K from our exchange in a sparsely populated & heavily timbered area which I assume rules out the fixed line of sight wireless currently being installed in 2 relatively nearby locations.

          • I’m pretty sure they’ll retain the copper network/services outside the fibre footprint (though I don’t have the link handy, I’d have to track it down again).

          • And just to be even more clear, Telstra will still retain ownership of the copper, even once to services are moved over to the NBN.

          • So what’s the copper going to be used for when ALL of Telstra’s customers both retail and wholesale are moved onto the NBN, including ALL HFC BigPond broadband customers?

          • Most of it (up to the pillars) will likely be removed and sold for scrap as copper is worth a fair bit ATM.

          • So what’s the copper going to be used for when ALL of Telstra’s customers both retail and wholesale are moved onto the NBN, including ALL HFC BigPond broadband customers?

            It’s up to Telstra what they do with it, they were talking about selling it as scrap in some areas, and just leaving it in the ground in others(due to the cost of ripping it out and getting it to market wouldn’t be worth what they’d get for it). In areas outside the Fibre footprint (the “7%”), it’ll still be used for voice from what I’ve read.

            HFC is a totally different kettle of fish though, they’ll still be using it for cable TV (Foxtel), even in FTTPed area’s.

          • Interesting you said “Telstra agreed”. Yes they did and the ACCC ratified it. It’s all fair and above board, no matter how you and the party must try to spin it…

            Also, for the 31st time I’m relaying to you that its known as technological progression for Australia, replacing the obsolete, meant for voice copper with fibre… also regardless of how you and your party wish to spin it.

    • Is that the other meaning of “biased”?
      Biased: Does not support one’s preconceived notions.

    • Are you serious? That was the most balanced article on the NBN ever – as per my thoughts above, if anything, it was biased towards the Coalition in that it didn’t fact-check the deliverability of many of the Coalition policy’s aims and assumptions, and stated the final 50Mbps as the primary Coalition speed aim, not the initial 25Mbps that most people like to focus on.

  6. BTW – looking at the ad at the top of the page, there’ll be a few trusty posters here salivating.

  7. This whole difference between the two political parties reminds me when I and other teachers moved into a new Senior campus school in 1998. It had been stocked with $100,000 of fibre optic cabling in the roof. It was my job to connect the network up to it and also connect to a joint use with the local council and local TAFE. It worked really well. When I retired the Finance Bursar was dismantling it to install copper connections because my fibre optics was “too expensive”! Apparently they have never recovered.

  8. It is nice to see an article posted by someone who is actually qualified to talk about the subject, ie an engineer first and a journalist second.

    It seems a very balanced presentation.
    Bet it never sees the light of day in the mainstream media.

    Thank’s Renai for publishing this.

  9. “Telephone companies around the world are now enhancing their mobile networks with an ever-increasing number of small wireless base stations located on street corners, in shopping centres, offices, and even in customers’ homes,”

    I was in Japan the other day and noticed Softbank wifi everywhere. It was in all the hotels and I could always pick up a Softbank signal when I did a scan. In Japan anyway this seems to be the way they are going 4G supplemented with wifi. Saves on the 4G bandwidth as just about everywhere in Japan is fibre. Unlimited 100/100 plans are less than 500yen/month.

    • The ball has already been well and truly dropped, three attempts at the rollout figures, and if that doesn’t work redefine premises passed to include those premises that cannot connect to the NBN for up to 18 months.

      • So that’s it…. your entire argument against the NBN is they are behind their estimations…LOL

  10. Living in the small town of Merriwagga in NSW, I happen to see torture every day, Telstra has installed a new fibre back-haul past our small exchange and even terminated fibre in there, all I can say is that I would be ecstatic to even have VDSL, let alone ADSL. I offered to buy an mini ADSL DSLAM for the exchange but that came with the swift ‘no’. I would be happy with fibre but I digress, just having a fixed line service is better than 3g wireless and only having download speeds of 400kbps (19km from tower), not to mention trying to use a mobile phone here is almost a waste of time. I would like to at least see VDSL supplied to small towns that have fibre terminated at their exchange.

  11. “In essence, the Coalition’s FTTN network will cost two-thirds as much as Labor’s FTTP network, based on the official cost estimates in each policy, but will be only one-twentieth as fast.”

    The total cost of A$44.1 billion VS A$29.5 billion Should not be the comparison figures
    The total taxpayer funded contributions of A$30.5 billion VS A$29.5 billion are the relevant figures that should be used. The remaining A$13.6 billion funding under Labours plan is NBN’s responsibility, its not borrowed or paid for by the government and has no impact the federal budget.

    There is NO significant variation in cost.

    • @Bill

      That part of the analysis got it right, total funding is total funding no matter how much you want to try and get the Labor figure down with semantic spin.

      • Correct total funding IS total Funding. However Total cost to the Tax payer is a different issue.

        Because the suggestion that it is “cheaper” is based around the misconception by many people that the cost will be coming directly out of Tax payer funds. This is not the case for a substantial portion of the Labor fund. I would be saying the same thing if the Coalition funding was set up in the same way. But it appears as thought it is not.

        From the impression I have as a layman, it seems that the Labor policy costs more total, but a very similar amount to the tax payer themselves. Additionally the Labor policy has a specific plan to recover the costs based on the return on the investment. I haven’t seen anything to suggest there is anything like that in the Coalition policy. Thus the Labor plan on the face of it, even though it costs more in total is better than the coalition plan, as the Labor plan has a component of funding that will be a returned investment as opposed to outright expense. Which is what is suggested by the Coalition plan

        It is why I am asking if anyone can point me to clarifying examinations of the costs on both sides. As I don’t have the personal expertise to fully understand what I am reading from the policies themselves.

      • Total Funding of NBN = Taxpayer Funding of NBN + Other Funding of NBN
        Total Funding of LBN = Taxpayer Funding of LBN

        Total Funding of NBN = $44.1bn
        Investment by Taxpayer of NBN = $30.5bn
        Other Funding of NBN = Total Funding of NBN – Investment by Taxpayer of NBN = $13.6bn
        Total Funding of LBN = Taxpayer Funding of LBN = $29.5bn

        (Total Funding of NBN – Total Funding of LBN) / Total Funding of LBN = (44.1-29.5)/29.5 = 49.5%
        “The NBN costs 49.5% more to build than the LBN.”

        (Taxpayer Funding of NBN – Taxpayer Funding of LBN) / Taxpayer Funding of LBN = (30.5-29.5)/29.5 = 3.4%
        “The NBN costs 3.4% more to the tax payer than the LBN.”

        I often find that if you express ideas using mathematics, things become very clear and unambiguous, and we escape the issue of semantics, and so I have done that with Bill’s comment. I hope that wasn’t too difficult to follow, Fibroid. You’re welcome.

        • ** Of course, this line should read:
          Other Funding of NBN = Total Funding of NBN – Taxpayer Funding of NBN = $13.6bn

          • Twist it anyway you like copperRoids but 44Billion is still providing a value for money national infrastructure with more than 50 years of life vs a half assed 29billion dollar bandaid which is obsolete by the time its finished and requires billions more to be upgrades to FTTP!

            That’s reality. Now back to your bridge and stay there LibTroll!

          • djos is right.

            Fibroid, please do not keep posting ‘comments which inject demonstrably false information into the debate’.

          • It’s not actually false (44 is greater than 29 after all).

            However, the “Publicly funded” portions of each plan are 30.4 and 29.5. And the LBN policy only quotes “Public Funds” as it’s still basically a “pre-plan” and not the final result.

          • Another spoon…?

            No you are repeating partial figures which suit you…

            Everyone here (except you) admit to the bleedin’ obvious.

            The total costs are more expensive for FttP… having a larger footprint, superior product, longevity and being able to avoid using Telstra’s ‘obsolete’ copper.

            The rest of the figures you conveniently ignore, are the figures relating to the government funding aspect (remember how you used to harp on about the poor hurting taxpayer, but no longer do – *sigh*) which are quite similar.

            You may swallow now.

          • Go back and have a look again, it’s there, everyone else can see it (and I know you like to be spoonfed, but I don’t ant to overfeed you)…

            Seems Harimau was expecting a bit too much, when he said – “I hope that wasn’t too difficult to follow, Fibroid.”

          • Yes very cute…

            I’ll spoon feed you again…

            There has been a thread started which you involved yourself in, where discussion has revolved exclusively around the government funding for both broadband plans.

            The rest of us are discussing this issue and the table Harimau posted using comparisons, but I can see just to be difficult and enlessly childish, having involved your self in this thread, you are now refusing to correspond in relation to the thread, instead reverting back to the initial article…

            Good for you, obfuscation obviously works best for those like you, who are sans facts.

            Those who disgracefully accuse other people of hypocrisy… because these other people actually look at the complete picture of all up costs AND governement costs… not just the politically prudent, hand picked figures and ignore the rest, as you do, speaking of hypocrisy :/

          • BTW – let me pre-empt your predictable and inevitable reply…

            Yes got all of that, so that’s a no you can’t copy/paste, thought not…

            *rolls eyes*…

          • Good we got that sorted, so NO I didn’t partially quote funding figures from the table listed above, of course you desperately want to avoid referring to the table figures listed above because the figures $29.5b vs $44.1b are there in black and white, so to avoid saying they got the funding figures wrong (because they didn’t) you pretend that part of the table doesn’t exist at all.

          • LOL Fibroid…

            So who cares how much private investors pay over an above the govt. input?

            You were one of the , if not the main culprit who always made an issue of the NBN, because of the amount of (so called) taxpayer dollars.

            But now to suit everything Coalition that’s out the window *unbelievable*.

            Going by your latest contradictory logic…

            Does that meant the Coalition plan to force us onto a commie govt. owned FttN network while Labor are including private investors?

            Does that mean the Coalition’s plan is all govt. paid and the NBN isn’t?

            In fact does that mean the Coalitions plan is all taxpayer paid whilst the current NBN isn’t taxpayer paid?

            Not forgetting of course you admitted just a few days ago that the copper needs replacing as Telstra said sometime between 2003-2018 and with the Coalition’s plan not completed until 2019, FttN will be obsolete before it’s completed…

          • It’s from the table above, the Uni Department got the total funding figures from the NBN Business Plan 2012-2015 ( the NBN Co INCREASED it from the 2010 plan) and from the total funding in the Coalition policy document.

            If you or any one else disagrees you need to contact the NBN Co to amend the $44.1b stated in total funding, the basis of your argument is that as a pro NBN supporter you are finding it hard to try and state $44.1b is LESS than $29.5b in blogs like this and could they amend it, preferably lower than $29.5b.

            The only way they could do that is to rollout FTTN.

          • Those if us capable of rational thought would rather the project cost more and didn’t pi$$ money down the drain on copper that is mostly past it’s used by date!

            It’s only the right wing idealogical nutters like you that wnt to hold the country back and waste 30 billion now and then another 30 billion layer to do the job properly!

          • Not pointing you out specifically here dJOS (I think your posts are usually excellent), your post was just one of many that I actually clicked reply to.

            I know discussing things online can get a bit heated, and it’s a great tradition to /rant on forums, but can we try to stick to playing the ball, and not the man? It’s OK to point out that an argument is based in “Right/Left wing” thinking, but that doesn’t necessarily make them a “right-tard/nutjob/Commie-pinko”.

            Difference of opinion can actually be a good thing, and no one should take it personally :o)

            Think of it this way: Fibroid (not singling you out either, your just convenient ;o)) obviously has different (some “right”, some “wrong”) views on “things NBN” to the majority here. Some things we may, or may not, be able to win him over on. Some things, he may win us over on (like me with FTTB and “problem” MDU’s). Importantly, Delimiter comes up in a lot of Internet searches when folks are looking for info on the NBN (and other IT stuff like internet censorship, GoT piracy, etc), and I think it’s important not to alienate folks from the get-go by saying their views are unimportant because they invalid due to whatever political (or other) leanings they may have. It’s fine to agree to disagree.

            (Disclosure: I too can be as guilty as the next on occasion, but I try not to).

          • That’s cool mate, very sick of him recycling that same old BS topic after topic!

            Makes me not want to contribute at all!!!


          • I know the feeling, but think of it this way, for every post Fibroid/you make, there’s probably a 100 “lurkers” who don’t post, but still read what’s said. Frame your replies for them ;o)

          • Fibroid, do you think the current “Public funding of $29.5 billion will be required for a Coalition NBN.” (quoted from the policy) will be the final figure once the LBN is turned into an actual design/business plan, considering the “plan” currently is just a policy PDF?

            Do you also think there is a reason they made sure the word “Public” is in there?

            Not going for a “gotcha” here, just interested to hear your thinking on it.

          • It is also labelled total funding in the Coalition plan, so the only fair comparison is to compare like with like, that is with the total funding figure from the NBN Business plan 2012-2015 plan.

            The desperation to get that $44.b out of discussion is admirable as a true blue Labor NBN apologist but all external sources when analyzing the policies use that figure to compare with the Coalition $29.5b, you are flogging a dead horse.

          • It is also labelled total funding in the Coalition plan, so the only fair comparison is to compare like with like, that is with the total funding figure from the NBN Business plan 2012-2015 plan.


            Who is paying the $44.1b Fibroid? I’ll give you a hint, “Not the government”.

            The policy lays it out by saying “a limit on the public capital available to NBNCo. This limit will be $29.5 billion.”

            If you really do want to compare like for like, compare the total public funding, if you want to frame it to make the LBN policy look better than the NBN one, then by all means, continue with your apples and oranges comparisons, but it’s pretty dishonest in my view.

            Actual “total funding” comparisons can’t be made until Malcolm releases a proper LBN business plan.

          • Just as a point to clarify,

            If the required total funding is more than 44bn, then who has to front the extra capital?

            Is the government legally limited to the ~29bn or is it their target funding amount and the rest will be underwritten by the government in a worst case.

          • So the best you can come up with is a ‘/sigh’ with the conjecture argument that the $29.5b maybe increased when the Coalition release their Business plan.

            Oh course the Labor NBN has set the benchmark on increasing required funding as each Business plan is released , required funding increased from the 2010 Plan in the 2012 plan, and chances are they will increase it again when the current plan expires in 2015.

            But that’s ok because umm err it just is, but if the Coalition increase their funding requirement from $29.5b and the basis of this increase is pure Labor NBN apologist spin, it’s just not acceptable and will show how flawed their policy is.

            Hypocrisy at its best.

          • Usual strawman from Fibroid…

            Why don’t you tell us the estimated gevernment funding for both broadband solutions then?

          • Alex and Michael have the right of it.

            If the LBN is more than $29.5b (for several very good and obvious reasons previously discussed there is a really good chance it will be….at length), what then?

            At least Labor (shock!!!) allow private investment…

          • @Tinman_au

            ‘If the LBN is more than $29.5b (for several very good and obvious reasons previously discussed there is a really good chance it will be….at length), what then?’

            ‘what then’ – Why do you care? as I outlined above and you totally ignored the whole post the Labor NBN has increased its funding, so either you are generally concerned that original funding requirements can be increased per se or you are only concerned if it might be the Coalition that are doing it.

            If you have no concern that the Labor NBN Co can increase funding requirements and they have, then you should have no concern IF and the if is in caps for a reason the Coalition NBN Co does the same.

          • @ Fibroid… there’s no problem.

            It just proves that the difference in cost between ridiculous obsolete copper based FttN and full FttP is so negligible (and if there are increases to the Coalition’s plan, the government expenditure of FttN actually could be greater than FttP) that to mindlessly roll out FttN just to be different is idiotic.

            But of course the current FttP based NBN is always going to be a bad idea in the eyes of some simply because of who introduced it…

            Pity the eyes are wide shut eh?

  12. Interestingly, the article didn’t involve the expected return that the NBN is expected to make. One of the biggest differences is that Labor’s will make money, the Coalitions is just a big money sink.

      • Conjecture is Malcolm’s “stock in trade”, he doesn’t need to argue anything with folks like you around ;o)

          • That’s because you are incapable of understanding how important an FTTP NBN is to the future of this country!

            Put down your ideology for 5 mins and look thru the reports from IBM, Cisco, the Bureau of Statistics and so on and you’ll quickly realise the folly of building an obsolete network now and then having to re engineer and rebuild an NBN again in 2020 with FTTP!

          • Good point, as you agreed just a few days ago… the Coalition’s FttN will be obsolete in 2018, one year before it’s finished…not 2020

          • In 2020 It will be beyond obvious what a waste of money FTTN was and FTTP construction will be underway as a result!

          • Not always Fibroid…. before you were given the official party line to repeat at every blog/forum, you told us the current NBN can’t help but be successful, because it’s a monopoly and everyone is being forced onto it…

            Didn’t you… remember? Admit it, because you and I know it is so, don’t we?

            Probably explains why you have been too scared to answer anyone’s questions here ever since :(

          • Well the difference is that FTTH will have about 50 years in which to earn money. FTTN is obsolete by the time it’s finished the rollout.

          • So why are BT UK, France Telecom, AT&T USA, Verizon USA, and Chorus NZ rolling it out in 2013 and beyond, they are in the business to LOSE money?

          • As usual you ignore that those building FTTN ALREADY OWN THEIR COPPER NETWORKS!!

            Seriously, are you retarded?

          • Straight up with a totally offensive personal attack, love your style and your response doesn’t really answer this does it?

            ‘FTTN is obsolete by the time it’s finished the rollout.’

            So to re-phrase the question, the companies listed above are all in the business of preferred obsolescence are they?

          • @ Fibroid.

            Only a few days ago you agreed wth Telstra saying in 2003, that their copper would need replacing within 15 years (so by 2018, no later than).

            As such it seems you have answered your own question, with a resounding YES, doesn’t it?

            BTW – you need to learn the difference between a personal attack and a question (yes those things you appear to be alergic to answering), as dJOS clearly asked you a question :)

          • Alex, TBH I was rudely questioning his intelligence, given the continual demonstration of ignoring salient facts there are only two possible answers to my question:

            A1/ he is genuinely mentally challenged
            A2/ he is a LibTroll blinded by ideology

            I guess it could be a combination of the two as well but answer 2 seems most likely.

          • @Fibroid Yep, straight up attack, I’ve had enuf of your BS – you are nothing but a LibTroll with nothing constructive to contribute – the sooner you get a life time ban from this site the better!

          • They own the copper and have already got a lot of it rolled out. They have a lot longer period to get pay back on it.

          • I don’t even know why the hell you are tolerated on here. It’s a tech forum, no a political one.
            Your refusal to ceed any points, even when some are as obvious as 1+1=2, really shows your motivations are political and have nothing to do with which plan is better for Australia.

    • Taking it one step further, each version of the NBN is an asset with a given value at its completion. The Malcolm version has a value based on requiring extensive upgrades (or ongoing if done on demand) to keep up with utilisation requirements. The FTTP plan has much lower costs to keep up with the same growth.

      Other costs to consider are operating cost, financing costs and revenue generated. Malcolm’s only tool in his kit on this argument is to claim FTTP will cost $100B as opposed to $44B. Get Joe Hockey involved and I’m sure an eleventy makes it in there somewhere.

      So in 20-30 years time when NBNCo is prepared for privatisation and we are looking at a company that will have a value of several hundred billion in todays dollars, there will be a difference in value between the two assets that will totally dwarf the differences we are considering in the construction phase.

      Am I wrong in these thoughts because I think it is significant but it has never been more than alluded to in media coverage.

  13. I’d stump up $5,000 today if that meant that every house I live in, every business I work for into the future had access to Labor’s NBN.

  14. You forgot to add one major thing.. with Liberal you’ll also have a huge delay in the NBN rollout, what are we talking here months, years… ? all that to get an inferior system with high maintenance costs that will not be good enough in 5-10 years time.

    “Mr Turnbull told the ABC’s Lateline program that the Coalition would order a ‘forensic audit’ of the company if elected to government.

    ‘We have made no threats, we have a policy which proposes there to be a number of inquiries, a number of exercises, a strategic review, an audit, and a cost benefit analysis,’ he said.”

  15. “Labor and Coalition broadband policies: What’s the difference?”

    The tl;dr version is one is worth building the other is a coalition broadband policy.

    • Actually, the real difference is:

      One is a real ongoing project, the other is a PDF…

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