blog While your writer was whiling away his time in the Senate Environment and Communications Committee last night listening to NBN company chief executive Bill Morrow field a variety of questions from Senator Stephen Conroy, the NBN company’s media relations team was busy secretly briefing other journalists on the company’s initial trial of the G.Fast standard which allows much higher speeds than previously thought possible to be delivered through extending Fibre to the Node closer to customers’ premises.
This technology is known as ‘Fibre to the Distribution Point’ (FTTdp) and it is already being trialled in the United Kingdom, where British telco BT is planning to extend its already extensive Fibre to the Node network with the technology. Delimiter didn’t receive an invite to the NBN company’s briefing about G.Fast (my feelings are deeply hurt — your writer is planning to spend this afternoon sobbing in the corner of the office), but the trial has been copiously covered by other media outlets. One of the most detailed stories comes from The Australia, which writes (we recommend you click here for the full article):
“G.fast, which allows network operators to bring fibre speeds to copper lines, achieved trial speeds of 967Mbps on 20 metres copper length and 800Mbps on 100 metres copper length, which NBN Co said would be typical lengths using Fibre-to-the-Distribution point (FTTDp) technology.”
ZDNet has further details (again, we recommend you click here for the full article):
“The copper runs 100 metres from the basement to the fifth floor of the multi-dwelling unit (MDU) being tested in Carlton, with an apartment on that floor reaching speeds of 522Mbps down/78Mbps up during a trial last week … However, the company also pointed out that during the trial, it has had to turn on VDSL masking in order to avoid interference with other VDSL lines; once the ‘full spectrum’ is turned on, speeds should reach almost 800Mbps.”
I’ll have further thoughts about the G.Fast trial and Fibre to the Distribution Point at a later stage, but for now, suffice to say that this is a fascinating trial, and we applaud the NBN company for conducting it. The company is operating within a difficult situation at the moment, being forced to continually conform to the copper/HFC cable format the Coalition Government has foisted upon it. But it’s still innovating within that envelope, and that is something to be supported.
Image credit: Jeff Dutton