Telstra offers free data following mobile network outage

Telstra is offering free data for a day for all customers this Sunday following an outage in its national mobile network that affected voice and data services for some customers.

NBN gridlock: Peak hour congestion takes down FTTN for some

Some early adopter users of the Coalition's preferred Fibre to the Node technology on the National Broadband Network are seeing their broadband service slow to a crawl during peak hour periods, leading to questions about the fitness of model for permanent use on the NBN.
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‘ABC did not gag Nick Ross’: MD Mark Scott tells Senate (full video)

The managing director of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation has categorically denied that the broadcaster "gagged" its former technology editor Nick Ross from reporting on the National Broadband Network, stating that it merely wanted the journalist to comply with its editorial policies in doing so.

Fault brings month-long outage for PPC-1 international cable

A fault discovered on the 6,900km PPC-1 submarine cable connecting Australia to Guam is likely to take around 30 days to repair, according to TPG Telecom.

Most Australians now support MTM NBN, claims Morrow

The chief executive of the NBN company last week said that the debate over different technologies for the National Broadband Network was effectively over, with 'most' Australians having now accepted the rationale for the Coalition's technically inferior Multi-Technology Mix model for the network.

NBN says customers just as happy with FTTN or FTTP

The NBN company today stated that customers using its Fibre to the Node service were just as satisfied with their broadband service as those using Fibre to the Premises services, on the basis of the industry standard Net Promoter Score rating.

Telstra hires Turnbull’s sacked, foulmouthed MTM policy mastermind

Those of you who've been around the traps for a while may recall the name of Stephen Ellis, a former advisor to Malcolm Turnbull
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Watch: Turnbull implies he complained to ABC about “failed” NBN coverage

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull appears to have implied that he made the same complaint to ABC management that he has previously made in public before the 2013 Federal Election, stating that the broadcaster had "failed" to provide balanced coverage of the competing National Broadband Network policies.

NBN secretly extends FTTN/B to another 500,000 premises

The NBN company appears to have secretly formed a plan to extend its Fibre to the Node and Fibre to the Basement network rollout models to a further 500,000 premises beyond those outlined in its latest corporate plan in August.

Defying the Senate: NBN Co refuses to disclose brand new copper needs past 1800km

The NBN company has flatly refused to say how much brand new copper it need beyond its existing reserves of 1800km to make its Fibre to the Node broadband rollout model function correctly, in response to a question by one of the most powerful Senators overseeing its operations.

“Political indecision” leaving Australia a broadband backwater: ex-NBN CTO

The NBN company's first chief technology officer this week said that the protracted disagreement between Australia's two major political parties on how to best upgrade broadband networks was leaving Australia languishing in global broadband rankings, despite several obvious ways forward.

Govt releases assurance policy for migration to NBN

The government has released a Migration Assurance Policy (MAP) that sets out its plans to limit disruption during the switch-over to the National Broadband Network.

Devil’s Advocate: Why brand new copper is great news for new estates

Rolling out brand new copper to greenfields estates will help residents in those areas get broadband quicker (or at all) and pave the way for easy future upgrades. What's not to like?

Political “untruths” poisoning the NBN, says Budde

Subjective political "untruths" have subverted the debate over the National Broadband Network policy, veteran telecommunications analyst Paul Budde said late last week, with "factual technical information" becoming polluted by false rationality.

Now Jason Clare writes to ABC over Nick Ross ‘gag’

Shadow Communications Minister Jason Clare has stated that he is "very concerned" about claims that the ABC gagged its former technology editor from reporting on the NBN, and has joined his Victorian counterpart Philip Dalidakis in demanding answers from ABC managing director Mark.

Vic IT Minister requests inquiry into “grave allegations” of ABC NBN gag

Victoria's Innovation Minister has written to the ABC's Managing Director requesting a meeting and internal investigation regarding what he described as "grave allegations" that the broadcaster had gagged its former technology editor Nick Ross from reporting on the National Broadband Network.

Telstra not forced to deploy brand new copper, says Fifield

The office of Communications Minister Mitch Fifield has issued a statement denying that regulatory decisions by the Government were forcing Telstra to install brand new copper in new greenfields estates, adding that it was up to Telstra to decide what technology it wanted to install.

Basslink cable repairs ‘on schedule’ for March repair

Basslink has said repairs to the failed cable linking to Tasmania and Victoria are on schedule and the faulty section has been located. However, the fault will likely take until mid-March to fix, according to the firm's timeline.

Morrow hints at long-term FTTP upgrade for MTM NBN

The chief executive of the NBN company has stated in a radio interview that the National Broadband Network will eventually go to "the same place" as Labor's original Fibre to the Premises model through continual upgrades to the network over time, in a move which appears to offer long-term hope for those displeased by the Government's controversial multi-technology model.

NBN satellite engineer wins Australia Day honours

One of the key engineers who helped guide the NBN company's first satellite into orders has been awarded Australia Day Honours.

NBN critic and historic Liberal supporter Henry Ergas wins Australia Day honours

One of the most strident critics of Labor's original National Broadband Network policy and open Liberal Party supporter Henry Ergas has received one of the highest honours in this year's Australia Day awards, and will now become an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO).

Govt censors NBN Co’s FTTP projection data

The Federal Government has taken steps to stop the public getting access to a key data set which details why the NBN company believes a full-Fibre to the Premises rollout would cost up to $38 billion more and take eight years longer to finalise than its currrent controversial Multi-Technology Mix plan.

Labor, Greens slam Turnbull hypocrisy: PM pumps innovation but ‘trashes’ NBN

Labor and Greens politicians have this week labelled Malcolm Turnbull a hypocrite for pushing Australia's innovation credentials in the United States while simultaneously having "trashed" the National Broadband Network, as debate grows about the infrastructure's significant to the Prime Minister's innovation vision.

iiNet offers 50% discount on terabyte HFC cable plans

iiNet is offering a 50 percent discount for a limited period on HFC cable plans in some parts of Victoria where it owns its own infrastructure.

Telstra says Govt policy forcing it to deploy brand new copper instead of fibre

The nation's largest telco Telstra today said regulatory decisions made by the Government were forcing it to install brand new copper in new greenfields estates, rather than the next-generation fibre-optic cables which many Australians would expect in new developments.

Telstra may be deploying brand new greenfields copper

The Department of Communications has published statistics which appear to show that incumbent telco Telstra has deployed brand new copper to hundreds of new development premises around Australia, as a direct result of the Turnbull Government's new greenfields NBN policy.

How to fix NBN Fixed Wireless: Install a roof antenna extension

Having trouble with your NBN Fixed Wireless connection? The solution may be simple: Install a 'mast' on the roof of your premises that will boost your antenna higher than nearby trees. It sounds stupid, but it's done the trick for some -- and it may fix your connection too.

Telecoms industry raises concerns over latest TSSR draft

A coalition of industry groups has raised concerns over new national security legislation for the telco sector – the draft Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2015.

Exetel to compensate heavy downloaders over ‘unfair’ contracts

Internet service provider Exetel is to compensate consumers over residential broadband contracts that were deemed "unfair" by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).

ACMA seeks consumer representatives for advisory forum

The Australian Communications and Media Authority is seeking to appoint up to seven consumer representatives to the Consumer Consultative Forum.

61 agencies apply for metadata access

61 separate departments and agencies around Australia have petitioned the Attorney-General's Department to gain unwarranted access to Australians' metadata under the Government's Data Retention scheme, including minor organisations such as Bankstown City Council and the National Measurement Institute.

Whinge: Telstra wants to stop NBN Co helping smaller ISPs at all

The nation's biggest telco Telstra has told the Federal Government that the NBN company must not be allowed to assist smaller ISPs to better compete for customers on the National Broadband Network, despite the fact that Telstra itself already has a 50 percent NBN market share.

Choice calls for help to defeat Netflix geo-blockade

Following Netflix's announcement that it will prevent users accessing its international content via location-masking tools, consumer advocacy group Choice is calling on Australian Internet users to help others find ways around the blockade.

‘Appalling treatment’: Vic IT minister to take Ross’s cause to ABC MD

Victoria's Innovation Minister has described the ABC's treatment of its former technology editor Nick Ross as "appalling" and has expressed a desire to meet with the journalist and take his case directly to the managing director of the broadcaster.

The Inside Track: No, the ABC did not gag Nick Ross

Put the pitchforks away and go back to your homes, people. The unfortunate truth is that the Australian Broadcasting Corporation did not gag Nick Ross from writing about the National Broadband Network and that it was his own choice not to respect the broadcaster's clear editorial guidelines.

Copper rapidly losing ground to fibre in global broadband figures

IT market intelligence provider Point Topic has released new figures revealing that the numbers of people using fixed broadband globally climbed in the third quarter of 2015, with the numbers using copper-based technologies to connect taking a sharp downturn and fibre rapidly on the way up.

ABC tech editor claims broadcaster “gagged” his NBN coverage

The ABC's outgoing technology editor today claimed he had been "gagged" by the broadcaster from publishing further articles about the National Broadband Network, after several initial articles heavily criticised the Coalition's Multi-Technology Mix model.

Truth: Simon Hackett proven right on “insane” NBN pricing, POIs

History has proven Simon Hackett right: The pricing and Points of Interconnect models set up by the NBN company and the ACCC have helped destroy broadband competition in Australia and are actively helping Telstra re-establish its odious monopoly in an NBN world.

Telstra says it has 50 percent NBN market share, wants more

Telstra this week said it had already taken a 50 percent market share of National Broadband Network customers and wanted to push to achieve even more, in news set to call into question controversial NBN decisions made by the Government and the ACCC meant to advance broadband competition.

NBN kicks off FTTN roll out in new areas of Tasmania

The NBN has commenced construction work in Tasmania that will use fibre to the node (FTTN) technology to connect several new communities.

Fixed Wireless NBN turns out worse than ADSL for some

It was supposed to be next-generation infrastructure which would make their old broadband connection obsolete. But for some connected to the NBN company's Fixed Wireless infrastructure, the performance of the platform is leading them to question whether their old ADSL broadband was actually a better option.

NBN Co rejects FOI request for basic FTTN modem details

The NBN company has flatly rejected a seemingly innocuous Freedom of Information request which sought to establish the specifications which Australians would need to meet in order to connect their end user hardware to its Fibre to the Node and Basement networks.

NBN rejects analysis: FTTP rollout to take “significantly longer”

The NBN company has called into question the validity of a detailed value analysis by a Monash University researcher, stating that a full Fibre to the Premises rollout would take significantly longer to achieve in Australia than its current Multi-Technology Mix model.

NBN FTTN kills off ADSL for metro customer, to be replaced with satellite

The NBN company has confirmed plans to terminate the ADSL connection of a customer living in metropolitan Adelaide and replace it with a high-latency satellite connection, due to the installation of Fibre to the Node services to neighbours in the same street.

Detailed analysis of NBN Co’s finances shows FTTP better value than FTTN

A researcher from Monash University has published a detailed analysis of the NBN company's costs which appears to show that Labor's technically superior Fibre to the Premises model represents better financial value than the Coalition's preferred Fibre to the Node technology only a scant few years after FTTP was deployed.

NBN goes to market for FTTdp hardware

The NBN company has gone to market to purchase 'Fibre to the Distribution Point' (FTTdp) hardware that will allow it to deploy fibre further out into its growing Fibre to the Node network, as speculation increases that Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will formalise a widespread FTTdp rollout ahead of this year's Federal Election.

amaysim buys fellow mobile telco Vaya

Mobile telco amaysim this morning announced it had bought privately owned Vaya for $70 million, in a move that will add some 140,000 subscribers to amaysim's customer database and further consolidate the already tight mobile market.

Comcast runs successful real-world test of gigabit HFC

In what it is calling a "world first", Comcast has switched on gigabit hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) broadband at a home in the US.

Telstra meets CWU over alleged issues with redundancy procedures

Telstra has met with the Communication Workers Union (CWU) over claimed procedural discrepancies as the telco seeks to reduce staff numbers via voluntary redundancies.

NBN Co to pay Telstra to fix its own copper network

The NBN company today announced it had signed or was working on deals with Telstra and Optus that would see the pair continue to fix, maintain and operate the legacy copper and HFC cable networks which they have already sold to the NBN company.

Spectrum re-farming in NSW, ACT boosts Vodafone 4G coverage

Vodafone has completed re-farming the low-frequency 850MHz mobile spectrum in New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory to bring about stronger 4G coverage and extra capacity.

Optus pays $51k fine over false claims broadband speeds are ‘NBN-like’

Optus has paid fines of $51,000 for making false claims about its broadband services, saying they were "NBN-like" in their speeds.

Truth: The NBN’s two satellites will be nowhere near enough

The NBN company's radical overhaul of its satellite plans this week represents a very clear signal that even the 135Gbps of capacity that its two new birds will provide will not go anywhere near close enough to meeting the rapidly growing demand from rural and remote areas for high-speed broadband.

FTTN rollout hits 50,000 homes in record time

The NBN company today revealed its Fibre to the Node infrastructure was ready to be used at some 50,000 homes, a milestone that it reached just 51 days after formally launching the infrastructure in September.

NBN rejects claims it puts medical alarm services at risk

The National Broadband Network has rejected as "inaccurate" claims that its next-generation infrastructure rollout is placing medical alarm services at risk.

Blackspot programme reopens to further boost mobile coverage

A second round of the Mobile Black Spot Programme (MBSP) has opened to help boost the consistency of mobile coverage across Australia.

Google Fiber considers expansion to Chicago and Los Angeles

Google Fiber may soon come to Chicago and Los Angeles, following a call from the tech and search giant for the two cities to explore the feasibility of a rollout there.

NBN controversy mars Turnbull’s innovation launch

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was this morning forced to answer questions about the Coalition's controversial National Broadband Network policy, in the context that his much-hyped Innovation and Science Agenda released today barely mentions the foundational infrastructure it will rely on.

NBN offers 50Mbps/20Mbps fixed wireless product

The NBN company this morning announced it had launched a fixed wireless broadband service offering download speeds of 50Mbps and upload speeds of 20Mbps -- double the speeds currently available on the company's wireless platform.

Budde says he warned Turnbull about Optus HFC cable issue

Veteran telecommunications analyst Paul Budde late last week said he publicly warned Malcolm Turnbull that the HFC cable network which the NBN company bought from Optus for $800 million was not suitable for use as part of the National Broadband Network, but that the Prime Minister had ignored the analysis, surrounding himself instead with "yes men".

NBN revamps CVC pricing scheme

As you may have seen last week, the NBN company announced that it would conduct a trial of revamped pricing on its CVC product -- the structure through which the NBN company actually charges retail ISPs for downloads over its network, rather than customer connections.

Critics “mistaken”, says NBN Co: We’re not going to “scrap” Optus HFC

The NBN company today said those who believed it was going to "scrap" Optus' HFC cable network were "mistaken", and that leaked documents published last week showing the network was not fit for use as part of the National Broadband Network were only a "hypothetical exercise".
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Fifield misleads Senate on Labor’s NBN policy history

Communications Minister Mitch Fifield appears to have this afternoon inadvertently misled the Senate regarding the history of the Labor Party's National Broadband Network policy, falsely alleging that the party had not considered re-using existing network infrastructure during the development of the policy.

“Beat up”: NBN claims $800m Optus HFC fail is “good governance”

The NBN company has described revelations that vast chunks of the Optus HFC cable network it bought for $800 million are not fit for upgrade as evidence of "good governance", adding that articles about the subject published yesterday are merely a "beat up" of one possible network deployment scenario.
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‘We’re fixing Labor’s NBN mess,’ says Turnbull

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has avoided directly answering the question of whether he still stands behind the NBN company's existing cost estimates with respect to its use of HFC cable and copper technologies, instead claiming that the Coalition Government was cleaning up the NBN "mess" which he said Labor had created.
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“Political hacks”: Conroy says NBN board responsible for Optus HFC disaster

Former Communications Minister Stephen Conroy has accused the board of the NBN company of being "incompetent political hacks" who abrogated their responsibility in allowing the purchase of unfit networks such as Optus' HFC cable infrastructure in an ill-fated attempt to ensure the Coalition's Multi-Technology Mix model could be delivered.

NBN Co may overbuild the Optus HFC cable network it bought for $800 million

Leaked internal documents have revealed that the NBN company is considering overbuilding the HFC cable network it purchased from Optus at a cost of $800 million, in a move which dramatically validates long-standing criticism that the HFC cable technology could not meet Australia's future broadband needs.

Telstra confirms South Brisbane NBN negotiations on ice

Telstra has reportedly confirmed it has stopped actively negotiating with the NBN company to sell off its fibre network in the South Brisbane exchange area, as a lack of action by both companies on the issue continues to leave customers in the area paying exorbitant prices for poorer services compared with NBN regions.

50Mbps good enough for ‘ten years’, says NBN’s Morrow

The chief executive of the NBN company, Bill Morrow, has stated in several comments over the past month that the 50Mbps base speeds which the company is aiming for across much of its network will be good enough "for the forseeable future" -- ten years after the NBN is initially built.

Bell Canada plans 10Gbps speeds for ‘easier to maintain’ FTTP

Canadian telco Bell Canada has revealed it is planning to extend its Fibre to the Premises network to some 2.2 million premises by the end of 2015, hyping the technology as being far easier to maintain than Fibre to the Node and also being capable of delivering 10Gbps speeds to customers by 2017.

TPG will raise $300 million to repay iiNet debt and support initiatives

Australian telco giant TPG Telecom Ltd announced yesterday it plans to raise $300 million through a placement of shares to "sophisticated and institutional" investors in Australia and certain overseas jurisdictions.

Vocus and Nextgen to build Australia-Singapore 100Gbit/s high-speed cable

Vocus Communications has confirmed that it has signed a non-binding agreement with Nextgen Networks to construct a high-speed Australia-Singapore submarine cable (ASC) and and is currently "engaged in due diligence on the opportunity".

NBN CEO won’t talk South Brisbane, TransACT

The chief executive of the NBN company has flatly refused to comment on contentious situations with relation to the company's rollout in the South Brisbane and Canberra areas, where it appears to be overbuilding existing open access high-speed broadband infrastructure.

Telstra claims ‘world first’ following 1Gbps mobile speed test

Mobile provider Telstra claims to have achieved a "world first" following "successful" tests of 1Gbps speed capability on its commercial mobile network.

Quigley’s right: Morrow says $15bn NBN blowout “mostly” relates to MTM

NBN chief executive Bill Morrow this morning broadly confirmed analysis by his predecessor Mike Quigley showing that the up to $15 billion blowout in the NBN company's costs was due to the Multi-Technology Mix imposed by Malcolm Turnbull, in a move that appears set to increase the pressure on the Government over the issue.

ACCC moves to regulate ‘superfast’ broadband networks

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has released a draft decision proposing regulation via a Superfast Broadband Access Service (SBAS) in order to prevent local monopolies by service providers.

Quigley releases detailed evidence showing MTM NBN cost blowout

The former chief executive of the NBN company has released an extraordinarily detailed and highly referenced document analysing the company's costs, to back his claim that the up-to-$15 billion blowout in the cost of the NBN was due to the Multi-Technology Mix imposed by Malcolm Turnbull.

Optus targets renters with 50GB 4G wireless broadband plan

Australia’s second-largest telecommunications company, Optus, has announced a new 50GB 4G wireless broadband plan it says is perfect for renters or students who need to quickly set up a reliable Internet connection or those living in areas with no access to cable broadband.

NBN CTO pitches 5Gbps speeds for HFC cable modems

The chief technology officer of the NBN company yesterday said new modems launched by the company's equipment supplier ARRIS will allow theoretical top speeds of 5Gbps down and 2Gbps up, in comments which appear to run contrary to ongoing claims by the company that Australians are not interested in gigabit NBN speeds.

Go back to retirement, NBN PR chief tells Quigley

The NBN company's chief spokesperson has rejected criticism of the company's controversial Multi-Technology Mix by its former chief executive Mike Quigley, saying today that "former CEOs should remain just that" as they were no longer close to the detail of the companies they had formerly led.

Turnbull’s NBN blowout caused by MTM, says Quigley

Former NBN Co chief executive Mike Quigley has stated that the up to $15 billion blowout in the cost of the National Broadband Network was due to the Multi-Technology Mix imposed by Malcolm Turnbull, using previous comprehensive audits of the company as evidence.

Telstra to make 480 positions redundant

On October 27th, Telstra informed the Communication Workers Union (CWU) about its proposed operational changes that will result in making 480 positions redundant. The majority of the affected positions are held by Telstra employees, while the rest include agency staff.

Fifield gets serious about VDSL cross-talk issue

Communications Minister Mitch Fifield has registered a new regulation which will force Australia's broadband industry to develop its own industry code dealing with the thorny issue of cross-talk interference in the new generation of Fibre to the Node and Basement technologies.

Telstra offshores 34 Tasmanian jobs

Your writer can't imagine that it's easy working at Telstra. Although Australia's biggest telco has an extensive workforce with many career opportunities, it also conducts regularly redundancy rounds as part of its ongoing drive to become more efficient and cut costs.

NBN G.Fast “more hype than reality”, says Budde

Veteran telecommunications analyst has described the G.Fast technology which the NBN company plans to deploy into its network from 2017 as "more hype than reality", questioning whether it will actually be able to deliver on its close to a gigabit speed promises.

“Awash in cost over-runs and red ink”: Kiwis sledge Australia’s NBN

When it comes to broadband, it's safe to say that New Zealand is beating Australia hands down.

Telstra still upgrading the HFC network it is selling to NBN Co

The nation's largest telco Telstra has revealed it will invest a significant amount of capital upgrading the HFC cable network it has contracted to sell to the NBN company, in a move which raises questions about the long-term future of the network.

Fifield praises “superfast” Fibre to the Node rollout

Communications Minister Mitch Fifield has praised the controversial Fibre to the Node technology which the NBN company is launching at the moment as part of the Coalition's Multi-Technology Mix vision, describing FTTN as "superfast", despite the fact that some residents may only get speeds of 50Mbps.

NBN Co sets 150GB cap on long-term satellite access

The NBN company has proposed setting a series of caps on usage of its two satellites, with entry-level plans featuring a cap of 75GB per month and higher level plans offering between 100GB and 150GB per month.

Telstra “unable” to sell South Brisbane FTTP to NBN Co

Negotiations appear to have broken down over the planned sale of Telstra’s Fibre to the Premises network in South Brisbane to the NBN company, with the Government stating that Telstra has been “unable” to reach an agreement for the infrastructure to become part of the National Broadband Network.

Andrew Bolt slams Turnbull for ‘fumbling’ NBN fix

Conservative commentator Andrew Bolt has opened fire on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull over his handling of the National Broadband Network, stating Turnbull has “fumbled” the catch on the NBN and let the project blow out to twice the cost and four years behind the delivery that Turnbull promised.

TPG/iiNet shuts down TransACT’s Canberra call centre

TPG and its subsidiary iiNet have quietly shut down the dedicated call centre supporting ACT and Victoria-based ISP TransACT, making all of its staff redundant and shifting call volumes to other call centres around Australia.

NBN Co secretly overbuilding Telstra’s South Brisbane fibre with … more fibre

The NBN company is secretly overbuilding portions of the Fibre to the Premises network which the nation’s biggest telco Telstra built in the several years up to 2013, in a move that calls into question whether the Telstra FTTP infrastructure will ever become part of the National Broadband Network.

NBN Co’s G.Fast FTTB trial hits close to 1Gbps over copper

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 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.

Switkowski worried about “heroic” effort needed to meet NBN targets

Some of you may recall that then-Shadow Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull was fond of using the word "heroic" with reference to the NBN company's rollout targets and revenue assumptions under the previous Labor Government, indicating that he did not believe they were realistic. With this in mind, we were surprised this week to read in the pages of the Financial Review that the NBN company's chair Ziggy Switkowski has chosen the same word to apply to the NBN's rollout plans for the next five years.

Labor should just leave the MTM NBN alone, says M2

It hardly comes as a surprise that the head of M2 Group, Geoff Horth, is calling for a bit of bipartisanship on the NBN from here on in.

Labor’s NBN was a “fantasy model”, says Fifield, despite FTTP progress

Communications Minister Mitch Fifield has described the previous Labor Government’s near-universal Fibre to the Premises approach to the National Broadband Network as a “fantasy model” and “unachievable”, despite the fact that almost all of the progress on the NBN thus far has been based on that model.

Nonsensical farce: NBN massively overbuilding Canberra’s FTTN with … more FTTN

The NBN company’s new three-year rollout plan has revealed the company plans to overbuild TransACT’s long-established Fibre to the Node and HFC cable networks in Canberra, Mildura and Geelong with more Fibre to the Node cables, in a decision which appears to make no technical or commercial sense.

NBN HFC trial to start in November

The NBN company has revealed it will conduct a pilot trial of HFC cable technology on the National Broadband Network starting in November this year and lasting until March 2016, in a move which appears set to finally provide some hard data around the performance of the HFC networks the company is buying from Telstra and Optus.

Vocus/M2 consider FTTB rollout to compete with NBN Co, TPG

You may recall that several weeks ago, mid-tier telcos M2 and Vocus announced they would merge into a large company with a market capitalisation in excess of $3 billion, in a move that will further cement M2’s place as Australia’s fourth-largest broadband player and further consolidate the already minimalist Australian telecommunications industry. But what was not widely reported at the time was that the merged pair of telcos are also considering pursuing a Fibre to the Basement rollout to compete with the NBN company and TPG, which are already deploying this kind of infrastructure.

They did it

From this day on, whenever Australian engineers are facing a tough task, they should look up into the skies and remind themselves of the power of the Australian mind. If Australian ingenuity can put such a hunk of incredibly complex communications infrastructure into orbit to serve our broadband needs, purely on the strength of some clear thinking and a lot of hard work, then we truly can do anything. And we will.

$1bn deal: TPG to shift all mobile customers to Vodafone, build dark fibre

As speculation increases about a possible merger, Vodafone and TPG this morning announced a $1 billion deal which will see the pair increasingly link their operations together, with TPG to shift its mobile customers to Vodafone’s mobile network and construct an extensive dark fibre network to support its partner’s mobile towers.

M2 to merge with Vocus

Mid-tier telcos M2 and Vocus this morning announced they would merge into a large company with a market capitalisation in excess of $3 billion, in a move that will further cement M2’s place as Australia’s fourth-largest broadband player and further consolidate the already minimalist Australian telecommunications industry.

Telstra launches Voice over LTE, 600Mbps mobile hotspot

news The nation’s largest telco Telstra this week revealed it would shortly launch 4G Voice over LTE calling over its mobile network, in a...

Rod Tucker’s right: Turnbull’s MTM model will leave Australia behind

University of Melbourne academic Rod Tucker attracted strident criticism this week for his claim that Malcolm Turnbull’s Multi-Technology Mix approach to the National Broadband Network will result in Australia remaining an “Internet backwater”. However, the unfortunate reality is that Tucker’s comments are all too accurate.

We must determine how the $15bn NBN cost blow-out occurred

The full resources of the Federal Parliament and other Government accountability mechanisms must be deployed to determine how a cost blowout of between $5 billion and $15 billion was allowed to occur in the National Broadband Network, and how to stop a similar situation from occurring again in future.

Turnbull has “no-one else to blame”, Labor says on NBN cost blow-outs

The Opposition has blamed the up to $15 billion National Broadband Network funding blow-out revealed this morning on “poor decisions” and “wrong assumptions” made by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull during his stewardship of the project, as the war of words between the major parties on the issue ramps up.

NBN Co dumps FTTP plan for another half a million premises

The National Broadband Network Company this afternoon revealed up to 550,000 less Australian premises would receive the full Fibre to the Premises rollout than had been previously been planned under the Coalition’s Multi-Technology Mix, with the project’s funding requirement also blowing out by between $5 billion and $15 billion.

NBN Co doubles coverage, user base over past year

The NBN company has doubled the amount of premises it serves and the number of end user customers actually connected to its network over the past year, the company announced this morning, as the deployment of its broadband network around Australia continues to proceed.

NBN Co delays FTTN rollout for further testing

The National Broadband Network company has acknowledged it is significantly delaying its rollout of Fibre to the Node technology in order to better test its own systems involved in the deployment, as debate continues to swirl around the controversial broadband rollout style.

Turnbull revises history on NBN satellite demand

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has accused the Australian Labor Party of underestimating how much demand the National Broadband Network would see for its satellite service, without mentioning that he personally had stated in Opposition that sufficient capacity already existed, alleging there was no need to build more.

SkyMesh offers symmetric 100/100Mbps NBN

news SkyMesh has launched a set of broadband plans with symmetric speeds of 100/100Mbps over the National Broadband Network’s Fibre to the Premises infrastructure,...

Turnbull’s NBN hiring spree is pure election fodder

Like the fictional Frank Underwood’s ‘America Works’ program, the massive nbn hiring spree unveiled by Malcolm Turnbull in the wee hours of this morning is pure election fodder — a beguiling program designed to demonstrate to the electorate that the reigning Government is instantly responsible for thousands of new jobs.

nbn project to hire 4,500 more staff

nbn this morning unveiled plans to train a further 4,500 workers to join the ranks of its construction partners and the company itself, in a move which Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has hailed as a victory for a project he dubbed “The Coalition’s NBN”.

Hypocrisy? Fletcher pushs tech exports to China while TSSR bill looms

Parliamentary Secretary Paul Fletcher has taken the extraordinary step of publicly advocating for Australian technology firms to sell products and services into the booming Chinese market, while the Federal Government that he is part of is seeking to pass legislation which may block Chinese companies from selling to Australia’s public sector.

Turnbull defends Geelong MP from FTTN critics

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull this morning travelled to Geelong to spruik the benefits of its looming Fibre to the Node deployment, braving the ire of local residents and Labor politicians, who are increasingly demanding local Liberal MP Sarah Henderson support the technically superior Fibre to the Premises version of the NBN instead.

Back off: Optus, TPG tell Govt on Telstra pricing

Major telcos Optus and TPG have joined the rest of Australia’s broadband sector and sharply warned Malcolm Turnbull’s Department to stop interfering in the competition regulator’s decision to cut Telstra’s wholesale pricing by 9.6 percent.

“Extraordinary”: Telcos slam Turnbull’s Dept for backing Telstra over consumers

A group of major Australian telcos have issued a fiery statement damning Malcolm Turnbull’s Department of Communications for its “extraordinary” attempt to support Telstra’s profitability and keep telecommunications prices from dropping.

Huawei thaws Coalition’s Chinese freeze

Huawei appears to have become increasingly successful at collaborating with senior figures in the Coalition, as the party gradually warms up to the Chinese manufacturer’s advances.

Turnbull’s Dept says ACCC could delay NBN migrations

A war of words has erupted between the ACCC and Malcolm Turnbull’s Department of Communications, with the department claiming a pricing decision by the regulator has the potential to delay Australians migrating to next-generational National Broadband Network infrastructure.

Hockey says Govt spending $70bn on NBN

Treasurer Joe Hockey has stated that the Government is spending about $70 billion building its version of the National Broadband Network, in comments which appear to run contrary to existing estimates about the Government’s investment in the project.

Labor will abandon its FTTP NBN policy

There is absolutely no doubt that the Australian Labor Party will abandon its Fibre to the Premises National Broadband Network plan and adopt the Coalition’s alternative Multi-Technology Model as official policy before the next Federal Election.

nbn meets Turnbull’s June 30 rollout targets

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull today confirmed nbn would meet its rollout targets for the start of the 2015/2016 financial year, although the success appeared to be based almost entirely upon the continual deployment of Labor’s previous Fibre to the Premises model, and not the Coalition’s technically inferior multi-technology alternative.

What should the ACCC’s role be in guiding infrastructure spending?

Those of you who have been in the industry for some time may recall that the national competition regulator played a substantial role in the previous Labor Government deciding to restructure the telecommunications sector through implementing an all-fibre model for its National Broadband Network project. This week, Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull made a few somewhat controversial comments about the ACCC's historical role in the situation.

Telstra gets $150m for NBN FTTN trial

Remember how in early June, Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull revealed that Telstra was working on a wide-scale trial of the Coalition’s preferred Fibre to the Node network rollout style that would encompass about a thousand nodes? Well, it looks like the pedal is about to hit the metal with the trial, with the Financial Review quoting Turnbull this week as stating that the two telcos had signed a deal which would see the trial go ahead.

How Australia got online 25 years ago

It is a quarter-century since Australia first connected to the internet, but this technological breakthrough had a long gestation. What is now a global phenomenon was once the property of an exclusive community.

Palmer pushes for minimalist NBN policy

The National Broadband Network Company's Strategic Review found conclusively that under almost every model, the company's network rollout would make a long-term return on investment, ultimately costing the Federal Government nothing due to the cost being reimbursed by subscriber fees paid by millions of Australians. Despite this, Palmer United Party leader Clive Palmer this week referred to the cost of the NBN and how it could be brought down further.

NBN debate heats up at IEEE conference

I don't want to get too deep into commenting on the merits of the various arguments coming from each side, but I wanted to make readers aware of a somewhat extraordinary debate which has been happening at, and on the sidelines of, the IEEE's International Conference on Communications, being held in Sydney last week.

Spirit deploys 200Mbps FTTB to Southbank

It’s only a very limited rollout so far, but Melbourne residents might be interested to know that local telco Spirit Telecom has deployed what appears to be a Fibre to the Basement broadband rollout in the Triptych apartment facility in the Southbank area. It appears that Spirit has been able to achieve speeds of up to 200Mbps by using Fibre to the Basement and then deploying its own in-building network to extend broadband to each apartment — skipping the existing in-building copper infrastructure.

The NBN is in a regulatory hole: Time to stop digging

As the saying goes, when you are in a hole, stop digging. The NBN is looking like a large pit, and at present, everyone is digging in deeper.

Turnbull dumps ABC spots; 7:30 dumps NBN talk

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has cancelled four scheduled appearances on various ABC television and radio shows over the past month, it emerged yesterday, as last night yet another ABC flagship cut short a discussion of Australia's largest ever infrastructure project, the NBN, with the portfolio minister responsible for it.

Telstra, NBN Co planning “thousand node trial”

The National Broadband Network Company is working with Telstra on a trial of the Fibre to the Node rollout style which could see a thousand nodes connected to fibre, in a move which would deliver real-life results of the rollout style's performance across a series of diverse use cases.

NBN Co adds “build preparation” zones into map

The National Broadband Network Company yesterday revealed it had added a new category of construction into its dynamically updated network rollout map, with the company now providing additional transparency around areas where "build preparation" activities are being undertaken ahead of the actual physical construction of its network.

‘Innocent’: Morrow defends role in PG&E disasters

Bill Morrow has maintained he acted in good faith during his time leading Pacific Gas & Electricity, in a fraught Senate Estimates session in which the Opposition pursued the NBN Co chief executive and another NBN Co staffer, Brad Whitcomb, over a series of tragic accidents at the US utility.

NBN Co “misleading” FTTN/FTTB users, says ACCC

The head of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission this morning said NBN Co would be "misleading" consumers on its planned Fibre to the Node or Basement (FTTN/B) infrastructure if it went through with its decision to allow them to order speeds between 50Mbps and 100Mbps which their connections could not actually deliver.

NBN imports Canadian HFC cable expert as CTO

The National Broadband Network Company has appointed a new chief technology and security officer who has extensive experience running a HFC cable network but little with other forms of network deployment, in a move which mirrors the Coalition's changed focus for the company's network rollout.

News Corp CFO to lead NBN Co’s financials

The National Broadband Network has taken the extraordinary step of hiring one of the most senior executives of media organisation News Corp Australia to be its new chief financial officer, in a move which appears destined to bolster theories about the Coalition's close connections with the Murdoch publishing empire.

Optus revamps plans with easier data sharing

The nations number two telco Optus has revamped its mobile phone plans, allowing customers to pay only a once-off setup fee of $5 to share data between devices with different SIM cards, launching SIM-only plans, bolstering voice and data value and setting excess data fees at $10 per gigabyte per month.

The ABC must now deal with its NBN problem

Over the past month, the evidence has become overwhelming that the ABC is actively censoring coverage of the National Broadband Network issue in a way that runs counter to the public interest. The broadcaster must now face the issue squarely and deal with it head-on, or run the risk of losing credibility with its highly informed and vocal audience.

Huge surprise: FTTN trials already delayed

Well, we knew it was coming. The extensive delays suffered by NBN Co during its rollout under the previous Labor administration are starting to hit the project under the Coalition as well. Last week it was revealed that NBN Co's new deal with Telstra may not be inked until the end of 2014. And later on in the week ZDNet confirmed that NBN Co's trials of the Coalition's preferred Fibre to the Node technology have also been delayed. Surprise!

iiNet to blanket Canberra with free Wi-Fi

National broadband provider iiNet today revealed that it had been selected by the nation’s capital to build Australia’s largest free Wi-Fi network, blanketing 12 business districts across Canberra during the coming year.

NBN/Telstra deal could be six months late

It’s extremely hard to see this as a surprise, given the fact that NBN Co’s previous delay with Telstra was extensively delayed, and given that as late as mid-January the pair had not even begun talking, but the Financial Review reported today that NBN Co’s negotiations with the nation’s largest telco Telstra over access to its copper and HFC cable networks could run up to six months late. Yup.

Scott misleads Senate about Q&A’s NBN coverage

Mark Scott appears to have unintentionally misled the Federal Senate about the degree to which the broadcaster's Q&A program covers the National Broadband Network issue, with the ABC managing director yesterday erroneously claiming that Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull had faced "many questions" about the issue on the show.

Jason Clare a ‘coward’, claims Turnbull

Malcolm Turnbull has taken the extraordinary step of accusing his opposite Jason Clare of not having the "courage" to question him about the National Broadband Network project in Parliament, in response to building allegations that the Communications Minister and other Coalition figures are openly lying about the project in public.

“Liar!” Rowland demands Turnbull tell NBN truth

Shadow Assistant Minister for Communications Michelle Rowland has accused Malcolm Turnbull of being a "liar" and failing to "tell the truth", with respect to the Communications Minister's ongoing false statements about the cost of Labor's National Broadband Network policy.

Telstra still abusing monopoly powers, warns ACCC

The nation's incumbent telco and industry-described 800 pound gorilla Telstra is still abusing its quasi-monopoly powers and not treating its wholesale broadband customers the same as its retail customers, the national competition regulator has warned, as debate continues to swirl about the telco's role in the future National Broadband Network rollout.

Tell them they’re joking: Telstra still wants to own copper or HFC

What we're seeing here with Telstra during the negotiation process over access to the telco's networks is Telstra leveraging its position of strength over the Government to get the best possible result from the negotiations. Under Labor, the Government had Telstra up against a wall, because it fundamentally did not need Telstra's assistance to build its NBN fibre infrastructure. It had the advantage. Under the Coalition, Telstra has the advantage -- because the MTM mix approach cannot be delivered without Telstra's active assistance. And Telstra is leveraging that situation to the hilt.

Liberal MP misleads Parliament with NBN motion

Liberal MP Ann Sudmalis has moved a motion in the House of Representatives which appears to contain demonstrably false information about Labor's National Broadband Network policy, in a controversial move which caused instant uproar on the part of Labor figures focused on the NBN policy.

Labor “surprised” by ABC’s NBN coverage

Labor MP Ed Husic this morning told the Federal Parliament that he was "surprised" by the ABC's coverage of the National Broadband Network issue, following news that several of the broadcaster’s flagship current affairs shows have largely ignored the issue recently and that it delayed a pro-NBN article by Lateline host Emma Alberici until after the Federal Election.

ABC insists NBN coverage “adequate, appropriate”

The ABC has issued a statement insisting its coverage of the National Broadband Network debate has been "adequate and appropriate", despite several of the broadcaster's flagship current affairs shows largely ignoring the issue and revelations that it delayed a pro-NBN article by Lateline host Emma Alberici until after the Federal Election.

Morrow must receive the dignity that Quigley never did

Those opposed to the Coalition's rival broadband policy must not step over the line into offensiveness in their pursuit of NBN Co chief executive Bill Morrow over past failures at US utility Pacific Gas & Electric. The better path of valor would be to treat Morrow with the same level of respect and dignity that his predecessor Mike Quigley deserved, but never got.

Megaport wins access to TPG’s datacentres

Independent telco interconnection company Megaport appears to have emerged as the victor in a landmark legal decision about whether telcos such as TPG are compelled to allow independent operators to connect infrastructure to serve customers located in their datacentres.

ABC delayed Alberici’s pro-NBN article until after the election

The ABC delayed publishing an article by Lateline co-host Emma Alberici starkly critical of the Coalition's rival National Broadband Network policy until after the election, it has emerged, as questions continue to be raised about the public broadcaster's coverage of Australia's largest ever infrastructure project.

RIP telco luminary Alan Kellock

If you've been in Australia's telecommunications industry for a long time, you may recall the name Alan Kellock. There's not a lot of information about him online, but Peter Kellock, who appears to be his son, published an obituary of Kellock the senior through The Age newspaper recently. I don't want to go too far into Kellock's history, but suffice it to say that he was instrumental in setting up Telecom (now Telstra), as well as the international telephone system that we all enjoy today.

Turnbull insists MTM CBN not “old technology”

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has issued a statement insisting that the Coalition's new "Multi-Technology Mix" approach to its Coalition's Broadband Network (CBN) project is "NOT" "old technology", despite that several of its constituent parts -- the existing copper and HFC cable networks -- 15 years to many decades old.

ABC flagships ignore Coalition NBN controversy

Several of the ABC's flagship current affairs programs are largely ignoring the Coalition's radical reshaping of Labor's popular National Broadband Network project, analysis has revealed, as debate continues to swirl about the public broadcaster's coverage of an initiative which constitutes Australia's largest ever infrastructure project.

Fletcher contradicts Turnbull on NBN satellite sale

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull and his Parliamentary Secretary Paul Fletcher have, in the space of less than three months, given directly contradictory statements on whether the Federal Government may sell off NBN Co's nascent satellite infrastructure in the near future.

Telstra creates giant national … Wi-Fi network??

The nation's largest telco Telstra has flagged plans to utilise its own and customers' infrastructure to create a giant national Wi-Fi network around Australia, in a move that comes just two years after the company shut down its existing Wi-Fi network with about 1,000 hotspots and goes against the clear Australian preference for 3G/4G mobile broadband access.

NBN Co renews Service Stream greenfields deal

National construction firm Service Stream this morning revealed the National Broadband Network Company had renewed its contract to design and deploy NBN Co's fibre network to greenfield developments (usually housing estates), in a deal which could eventually be worth some $140 million.

Telstra hits 450Mbps speeds in 4G trial

Australia’s largest telco Telstra this week said it had achieved live network speeds of 450Mbps on its Next G mobile broadband network, using the LTE Advanced Carrier Aggregation standard across a combination of the 1800MHz and 2600Mhz spectrum bands.

Budget 2014: What now for the NBN as taxpayer investment is capped?

NBN Co CEO Bill Morrow now faces some difficult decisions in deciding how best to allocate resources to meet the objective of providing high-speed broadband across Australia. Since the Coalition’s election in September last year the NBN has been subject to a number of reviews and a wholesale clean out of management. With many reviews, such as the cost-benefit analysis, yet to report, the strategic direction for NBN Co is uncertain making it difficult to comment on future developments with accuracy.

Optus lifts profits but loses customers … what is its long-term future?

The nation's number two telco Optus today reported a 15 percent jump in net profits for the year ended 31 March as cost-cutting initiatives take fat out of its operations, but the company is still facing a troubled future due to the fact that its overall revenues and customer numbers are still slumping.

Coalition MTM model a ‘$40bn fraud’, says Conroy in epic Senate rant

Stephen Conroy has accused the Coalition of perpetuating an "absolute fraud" on the Australian public through its drastic reworking of Labor's NBN project, with the former Communications Minister pointing out that the Coalition could not guarantee speeds on its planned infrastructure, and that no other country globally was buying back its incumbent telco's copper network.

4G networks to match NBN, claims Liberal MP

A Queensland Liberal MP who has been described as a “Malcolm Turnbull lieutenant” and a long-time critic of Labor’s popular National Broadband Network has made a number of inaccurate statements in Federal Parliament about the project, claiming it could be matched by 4G and 5G mobile networks without spending "some $90 billion of taxpayers' money".

Turnbull taints Budget with NBN cost lie

Malcolm Turnbull late yesterday used the Federal Budget announcements process to again erroneously claim that the Coalition's technically inferior version of Labor's National Broadband Network project would be $32 billion cheaper, despite the fact that the Communications Minister is aware this claim is not true.

NBN Co made FTTP architect Ferris redundant

NBN Co misled the Australian public about its treatment of Peter Ferris, it has emerged, with the company having made the highly experienced and respected network engineer who was responsible for the design of the company’s previous Fibre to the Premises network redundant rather than merely having demoted him, as it stated in April.

Telstra testing in-flight 4G broadband

The nation's largest telco Telstra has built new mobile towers covering the airplane route between Sydney and Melbourne and tested mobile broadband speeds up to 15Mbps to planes in the air, in a pilot program which could one day see the telco finally solve the long-running problem of in-flight Internet access in Australia.

Sky News kills NBN topic with Shadow Minister

A host on pay TV channel Sky News last week defended the new Coalition Government's unpopular radical overhaul of Labor's NBN project and subsequently shut down discussion of it during a live interview with Shadow Communications Minister Jason Clare, as controversy continues to swirl about the extent to which mainstream media is censoring coverage of the project.

Turnbull’s NBN mess ‘escaping public scrutiny’

Controversial commentator Van Badham has not been dismayed by having her NBN questions shut down live on Q&A last week by host Tony Jones and has penned a fiery piece slamming Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull's 'Multi-Technology Mix' vision and the poor media coverage of it.

Arch hypocrisy: Coalition continues NBN cost/benefit criticism

The Coalition has produced a controversial political pamphlet slamming, among other issues associated with "Labor's mess", the previous Government's move to go ahead with its National Broadband Network project without a cost/benefit analysis, just weeks after Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced the Coalition would do the same.

NBN Co finds mild satellite delay, wireless shortfall

NBN Co has published an extensive report of the satellite and wireless aspects of its infrastructure rollout, finding that it will need to slightly delay its planned late 2015 satellite launch until early 2016 and that its current provisions for wireless broadband in outer metropolitan and regional areas is not quite adequate to serve its planned user base.

US cable giant Cox to deploy 1Gbps

The list of US telcos and cities which are expressing a strong desire to deploy gigabit broadband speeds just keeps on growing. First it was Google, which is currently looking to take its Fiber offering to a further 34 US cities. Only a few weeks ago it was AT&T, which is also looking to deploy gigabit fibre, in its case to some 100 cities. And of course, the City of Los Angeles also has a gigabit project it is seeking partners for. The latest news comes from the Tech Times, which reports that US cable giant Cox Communications is now getting on the gigabit bus.

Labor’s NBN is a natural monopoly, but the Coalition’s is not

The argument made by respected competition expert, academic and executive Fred Hilmer several weeks ago that the National Broadband Network is not a "natural monopoly" is somewhat convincing, but ultimately falls short by failing to acknowledge specific factors relevant to competition in the telecommunications sector.

“Fictitious”: Turnbull rejects every Senate NBN allegation

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has published an extensive, 33 page Coalition rebuttal of specific allegations raised by the Opposition in late March claiming that evidence shows NBN Co’s Strategic Review published last year is based on “flawed and unreliable” premises and was in fact designed by Turnbull to constitute a “pre-ordained political outcome”.

NBN Co to deceive users on FTTN/FTTB speeds

The National Broadband Network Company has issued a product specification document in which it openly considers the possibility of allowing customers on its planned Fibre to the Node or Basement (FTTN/B) infrastructure to order speeds between 50Mbps and 100Mbps which their connections could not actually deliver.

Ireland subsidises FttX to rural areas

If all you know about Ireland is sourced from St Patrick's Day festivities, then you might be surprised to learn that internationally the country is considered a centre for technology innovation, largely because its Government has continually invested in the industry through favourable taxation laws and investment. In the newest move to come from this island nation, broadband is the focus.

Turnbull repeats Triple J lie to Alan Jones

Malcolm Turnbull earlier this week made several statements on Alan Jones' breakfast show on 2GB radio which the Communications Minister is aware are false, repeating incorrect information he had previously broadcast on the ABC's Triple J several weeks ago and failing to correct incorrect information broadcast by Jones himself.

From 200 to 350: Optus sacks more

The nation's number two telco Optus today confirmed the size of a redundancy round first revealed yesterday, with the company now planning to offload around 350 staff over the next few weeks instead of the expected 200 which was reported earlier.

ABC denies any NBN censorship deal with Turnbull

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation has denied it censored the National Broadband Network issue from being discussed on its flagship panel discussion program Q&A this week due to any arrangement with Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull, stating that it merely ran out of time to air a question on the topic.

Optus in yet another major redundancy round

The nation's number two telco Optus has confirmed it has kicked off its third major redundancy round in just two years, with around 200 jobs reportedly at risk.

ABC actively censors NBN issue on Q&A

The ABC's flagship panel discussion program Q&A last night appeared to actively censor the National Broadband Network issue from being discussed on an episode featuring Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull; ignoring a flood of questions from viewers prior to its filming, leaving the issue out of pre-show briefing documents and shutting down discussion on air.

Tassie NBN “shambolic”, “farcical”, says TacICT

Tasmania's peak industry body of the information, communications and technology sector, TasICT, has published a strongly worded submission to the Federal Government slamming both sides of politics for the "shambolic" and "farcical" progress of NBN Co's network rollout in the state, stating that the project has become a "political tool".

NBN questions needed for Q&A

I thought I would do a quick post noting that Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull will be appearing on the ABC's Q&A program tonight. If you have questions that you would like to see the Earl of Wentworth respond to, on any issue, but especially the hot button topic of broadband policy, then I recommend you submit those questions as soon as possible online here.

iiNet to splurge $350m on content, media

Over-the-top plays have not always gone well for Australia's telcos and Internet service providers. While the sector's big players -- Telstra, Optus, TPG, iiNet and Vodafone -- have proved themselves able at selling telecommunications services, in most cases they have also found it hard to make money from content or services sold over the top of their telco packages. But this doesn't appear to daunt iiNet, which tells the Financial Review this week that it has a war chest for just this purpose.

Neither AT&T nor Turnbull are telling the whole truth

The local debate over AT&T's plans to deploy gigabit fibre to 100 US cities starkly demonstrates that neither giant telcos nor the politicians regulating them can be trusted to give Australians 100 percent of the truth about how next-generation broadband infrastructure rollouts are being or should be deployed.

AT&T to deploy Gigabit fibre to 100 US cities

US telco giant AT&T overnight revealed it would deploy Fibre to the Premises infrastructure in 100 major US cities in the United States, delivering gigabit broadband speeds in a model which directly contradicts statements by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull that the telco is focusing on the Coalition's preferred Fibre to the Node model.

NBN Co demotes master FTTP architect

NBN Co has removed network planning responsibilities from Peter Ferris, the highly experienced and respected network engineer who was responsible for the design of the company's previous Fibre to the Premises network, allocating the role to an executive who is qualified for the role but has not directly worked in the telecommunications sector since 2007.

‘Super-sized’ broadband survey targets MyBroadband

A community project dubbed '#MyBroadbandvReality' which aims to deliver a real-world examination of Australian broadband speeds through crowdsourced submissions has launched a massively expanded broadband survey and is taking submissions from Australians until the end of April.

NBN Co considers third satellite

NBN Co is reportedly considering launching a third satellite in an effort to provide better broadband access to the small percentage of Australians in remote areas.

Turnbull lies on NBN to Triple J listeners

Malcolm Turnbull yesterday made several statements on the ABC's Triple J radio station regarding financial projections for Labor's National Broadband Network project which the Communications Minister is aware are false, with the former investment banker inaccurately conflating investment capital and government expenses for the project as well as exaggerating financial figures.

CBN FTTN test shows speeds of 105Mbps

The National Broadband Network Company today revealed it had successfully conducted early trials of the Fibre to the Node (FTTN) rollout model mandated by the Coalition Federal Government, with the trials delivering "raw" download speeds of 105Mbps over a distance of 100m from a local test 'node'.

“Labor mindset”: Turnbull denies cost/benefit hypocrisy

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has denied there is any hypocrisy in the Coalition Government not waiting for the same kind of cost/benefit analysis to be conducted into its broadband policy that it demanded from the previous Labor administration, accusing his critics of being 'stuck in a Labor mindset'.

One.Tel saga finally concluded

Wow. Are we still writing about One.Tel? Apparently so. One.Tel, of course, was a hugely hyped Australian telco which eventually went bust in spectacular fashion, and become the subject of many lawsuits. The final one is about to be concluded, according to The Australian newspaper.

NBN Co’s Telstra bill may be $98 billion

Ever received one of those giant telephone bills from Telstra with a massive amount of extra fees which you never expected? Spare a thought for the National Broadband Network Company. Industry newsletter Communications Day has gotten its hands on a report compiled by investment bank Goldman Sachs which, for the first time, fully projects the amount NBN Co could be paying Telstra over the next half-decade for access to infrastructure such as pits and pipes.

NBN Co to kill TPG rollout while Minister dithers

The National Broadband Network Company has decided to take action into its own hands to deal with TPG's plans to deploy competitive broadband infrastructure in Australia's cities, revealing plans this morning to accelerate its own rollout to compete with TPG ahead of any expected decision on the issue by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

What’s actually important for the NBN: Upload speeds

Shadow Assistant Communications Minister Michelle Rowland has published an opinionated article arguing strongly that upload speeds represent one of the key aspects of Australia's current and future broadband needs and that this issue has been almost completely overlooked under the Coalition's "dog's breakfast" Multi-Technology Mix model for NBN Co's rollout.

Seven months later, Turnbull still won’t talk TPG

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who has direct responsibility for setting and administering telecommunications law and regulation in Australia, has again refused to clarify whether national broadband company TPG is breaking the law by deploying its own Fibre to the Basement infrastructure in competition with NBN Co, seven months after the move was first revealed.

Gary McLaren’s last email to the NBN troops

Yesterday the National Broadband Network Company revealed it had made its long-time and respected chief technology officer Gary McLaren and several other senior executives redundant. This email was sent by McLaren to staff at NBN Co.

NBN Co turfs CTO, CFO, head of commercial

Incoming National Broadband Network Company chief executive Bill Morrow has turfed at least three key executives at the company after just one week on the job, with long-time and respected NBN Co head of corporate and commercial Kevin Brown, chief financial officer Robin Payne and chief technology officer Gary McLaren (pictured in order above) to leave NBN Co pronto.

I don’t know how to cover the NBN anymore

Australia's National Broadband Network project is now in uncharted territory. Beyond a joke, beyond a politicised mess, and even beyond farce, the incredibly inconsistent handling of the project by Liberal Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has led it far outside the bounds of rational discourse or intelligent consideration.

The NBN must have a cost/benefit analysis (October 2010 re-print)

This article by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull first appeared on Delimiter in October 2010, shortly after Turnbull was appointed Shadow Communications Minister. Delimiter re-prints this article today for the edification of readers, in light of the news that Turnbull has approved NBN Co to go ahead with the controversial ‘Multi-Technology Mix’ option for its broadband rollout, despite the fact that the cost/benefit analysis being conducted into the project will not be completed until the middle of 2014.

Hypocrisy: Turnbull approves MTM NBN without cost/benefit analysis

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has ordered the National Broadband Network Company to go ahead with the controversial 'Multi-Technology Mix' option for its broadband rollout, despite the fact that the cost/benefit analysis being conducted into the project will not be completed until the middle of 2014.

The NBN FTTdp option in detail

If you’ve been following Australia’s national broadband debate for some time, you’re probably familiar with most of the “fibre to the” terms. Fibre to the Premises is what Labor wanted to do with its National Broadband Network policy, Fibre to the Node is the watered down Coalition alternative and Fibre to the Basement is what most of the telcos want to build to apartment buildings. But what about Fibre to the Drop Point (FTTdp)? The concept, which would see fibre extended to the lead-in pit in front of Australian premises but the existing copper reused from that point on, has been explored in an extensive article published by the journal of the Telecommunications Society of Australia.

Victoria splurges $40m on train wireless

The Victorian Government this morning announced it would spend some $40 million setting up free Wi-Fi services and fixing mobile broadband blackspots on the Seymour line servicing Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong, Seymour and Traralgon.

Telstra/NBN FTTB trial hits 90Mbps

Wondering how NBN Co’s Fibre to the Basement trials in the Melbourne suburbs of Carlton, Parkville and Brunswick are going? Well, we already know that they’re likely to garner some pretty high speeds. Similar commercial deployments in Sydney have delivered speeds of up to 100Mbps, after all, and NBN Co’s own testing in laboratory conditions in late 2013 showed similar results. The first actual speed tests have been disclosed by Telstra at the CommsDay Summit in Sydney this morning.

We’re running out of wireless spectrum … so what can we do?

Australia is in a prime position to address the challenges and develop world-leading applications for ubiquitous wireless connectivity. The pedigree of our wireless laboratories and researchers in all parts of the country is second to none.

Further evidence Turnbull’s MyBroadband tracker overestimates speeds

The Australian Labor Party has published what it claims is further evidence that the MyBroadband broadband availability site launched by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull in February is significantly inaccurate, with average broadband speeds in the Federal electorate of Perth universally below the data produced by the site.

Why broadband is too important to be left to the private sector

Vox Media in the US has recently published a fascinating interview with Susan Crawford, former Special Assistant to President Obama on Science, Technology, and Innovation Policy. In it, Crawford expresses a view very similar to that taken by the Australian Labor Party — that the development of broadband is too important to be left to the profit-focused private sector.

Turnbull brings back Australian Broadband Guarantee

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has reinstituted a direct consumer subsidy scheme very similar to the Australian Broadband Guarantee program initiated under the Howard administration, in a move which will directly fund some 9,000 premises to access satellite services from commercial providers that are not NBN Co.

Unlimited 100Mbps for $89.99: TPG equals top NBN plan

TPG has launched a new plan on the National Broadband Network fibre infrastructure which appears to match the existing best option on the market from rival Exetel, with the national broadband provider also now offering an unlimited option at speeds of 100Mbps for just $89.99 per month.

Turnbull, NBN Co won’t discuss Strategic Review

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull and NBN Co have declined to formally respond to specific and ongoing allegations raised by the Opposition and other commentators that evidence shows NBN Co’s Strategic Review published last year is based on “flawed and unreliable” premises that undercut the Coalition's case for radically overhauling Labor's NBN project.

Successful telco regulation means a light touch

The demand this week by academic Michael de Percy for Australia's politicians to cease their chaotic struggle over the nation's telecommunications sector and let it get on with its own business shouldn't be seen as controversial. The best regulation in any sector takes a 'light touch' approach and this troubled industry is no exception to that rule.

Vodafone should buy iiNet before TPG can

The exit of Michael Malone from the company he founded 20 years ago has re-opened long-running speculation that top-tier broadband player iiNet could be acquired, and it's a valid idea. But the telco most suited to buying the powerhouse from Perth is not hostile rival TPG; it's ailing mobile telco Vodafone, which still has plenty of cash up its sleeves.

Coalition to adopt UK broadband platform

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has confirmed plans to implement the same underlying broadband infrastructure platform in Australia which has already been used for some time in the UK, with the two nations' incumbent telcos Telstra and BT to collaborate on the exchange over the next several years.

The politics of unshackling the NBN from politics

A long-term industry has been shackled to three-year political terms for far too long. The only way to unshackle NBN from politics is to get government out of the marketplace where it exists. Of course, the legacy of sunk costs will make this difficult. But by the time we stop bickering about the latest lot of reports, it will be time to deal with the next communications technology problem.

Turnbull, NBN Co invited to respond to Strategic Review criticism

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull and NBN Co have been invited to formally respond to specific allegations raised by the Opposition yesterday that evidence shows NBN Co's Strategic Review published last year is based on "flawed and unreliable” premises and was in fact designed by Turnbull to constitute a “pre-ordained political outcome”.

NBN Review designed for “pre-ordained political outcome”

Senior figures in the Federal Labor Party have teamed up to deliver a broad swathe of evidence that they believe shows NBN Co's Strategic Review is based on "flawed and unreliable" premises and was in fact designed by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull to constitute a "pre-ordained political outcome".

NBN Co mandates satellite “fair use” policy

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull yesterday announced the National Broadband Network Company had instituted a "fair use" policy and deployed additional capacity to allow its interim satellite service to function more effectively, amid reports users were seeing the broadband service on the platform slow to a crawl.

“Destructive forces” unravelling NBN, says Budde

"Destructive forces" at work in a "highly polarised political environment" are starting to "unravel" Labor's National Broadband Network project, veteran analyst Paul Budde said yesterday, with the new Coalition Government having boxed itself into a corner on the issue and end users set to suffer from a nightmarish situation akin to a "Pandora's Box" of problems.

Screw you, Turnbull: TPG starts FTTB deployment

National broadband company TPG today revealed it had started deploying its planned Fibre to the Basement rollout in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, in a move which directly challenges a statement by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull that the legality of such deployments would be examined by a panel within the next six months.

Has Labor already given up on its NBN?

The new Coalition Government appears dead set on drastically winding back, modifying, selling off or otherwise destroying Labor's comprehensive National Broadband Network vision. But the party which started the project in the first place appears to have already given up fighting this demolition job, with the exception of dogmatic former Communications Minister Stephen Conroy.

Turnbull slams Twitter’s NBN “craziness”

Malcolm Turnbull has accused users of social networking site Twitter of misrepresenting his position on the Coalition's broadband policy during a stoush with a small business operator unable to get broadband in a rural area, with the Communications Minister claiming the episode could be a case study "of the volatile and sometimes distorting character of social media".

Impolite Turnbull tweet sparks NBN backlash

A flippant response by Malcolm Turnbull to broadband problems being suffered by a high-flying small business owner and executive has backfired on the Communications Minister, with a plethora of responses being published on the social networking site slamming the new Coalition Government's controversial revision of Labor's popular National Broadband Network policy.

Vodafone turns on 4G in Tasmania

Vodafone has switched on its 4G (LTE) network in Tasmania, following successful live trials in recent weeks in West Moonah, Cambridge, New Norfolk, Warrane and Hobart Airport, and has confirmed plans to expand its coverage across the state in the coming months.

End of an era: Godfather Malone quits iiNet

The long-time chief executive of top-tier national broadband provider iiNet, Michael Malone, this morning revealed plans to completely resign from the company he founded twenty years ago in his garage, in a move that will signal the end of an era for Australia's broadband industry.

Quelle surprise! Cisco supports a HFC cable NBN

Call me cynical, call me a jaded old journalist who’s seen too much in his short life, call me suspicious, but I have to say I wasn’t precisely surprised to see the news that US-based networking equipment giant Cisco Systems is spruiking the benefits of a National Broadband Network project based on HFC cable technology. After all, Cisco does have a sizable business selling HFC cable equipment, especially in the US, the global home of HFC cable.

NewSat offers to buy NBN Co satellites

Pure play satellite company NewSat has made an offer to the buy the National Broadband Network Company's two satellites before they are even launched, as speculation continues to swirl around the potential privatisation of chunks of NBN Co's infrastructure under the new Coalition Federal Government.

TPG, iiNet, ACCC support competitive FTTB rollouts

National broadband companies TPG and iiNet, as well as the competition regulator, have published extensive submissions to the Federal Government supporting the right for commercial telcos to deploy their own Fibre to the Basement (FTTB) infrastructure throughout Australia in competition with the Coalition's Broadband Network (CBN) project, rejecting the idea that such planned investments should be blocked or otherwise regulated to support NBN Co's finances.

The great NBN sell-off has already begun

NBN Co, we hardly knew ye. Make no mistake: Tony Abbott's new Coalition Government does not want to own a national broadband monopoly. The process of selling NBN Co to the private sector has already begun, and will be accelerated over the next several years.

NBN Co updates rollout maps with new premises

The National Broadband Network Company has updated its dynamic rollout map with details of thousands of new premises where construction contracts have been signed, giving Australians a great deal more certainty about whether their premise will be included in the company's next round of Fibre to the Premises broadband deployment.

Switkowski in 2009: Fibre to make copper “obsolescent”

NBN Co executive chairman Ziggy Switkowski appears to have radically changed his views on the different merits of fibre and copper broadband technologies over the past few years, it has emerged, with a video interview having surfaced over the past few days showing the executive praising Labor's all-fibre NBN strategy and adding that it would make copper infrastructure "obsolescent".

Reversal: Switkowski admits Tassie NBN contracts specified FTTP

NBN Co executive chairman Ziggy Switkowski has been forced to retract a statement he made earlier this month regarding the company's network rollout contracts in Tasmania, admitting yesterday that the contracts did specify Labor's preferred Fibre to the Premises network model was to be used in the state.

NBN technology choice doesn’t matter, says Switkowski

NBN Co executive chairman Ziggy Switkowski has declared that the specific technology chosen by the company in its network rollout "does not matter", as long as that technology can deliver the "speeds" that Australians need today and that it can be upgraded as demand required, in a controversial statement which appears to fly against conventional wisdom in the telecommunications sector.

Five ways NZ is smarter than Australia on broadband

In Australia, poking fun at our New Zealand cousins has become more than just a hobby over the years; these days it enjoys the status of a national sport. However, when it becomes to broadband, the situation has been turned on its head: New Zealand is doing everything right that we are doing wrong. Here's five ways the Kiwis are smarter than us in this critical area.

Melbourne CBD to get free Wi-Fi

The Victorian Government and the City of Melbourne today announced plans to source a provider from the private sector to provide free Wi-Fi access in the city's central business district, despite the fact that Australia's existing mobile broadband networks are already providing reliable wireless access, and despite the fact that similar projects have failed in other states.

‘Severe impact’: Rival FTTB plans worry NBN Co

If the Coalition had stuck with Labor's largely Fibre to the Premises NBN policy, of course, all this wouldn't be an issue. Talk about unintended consequences. Setting regulatory frameworks can often be like this; you need to think through several steps ahead, especially when it comes to a long-term project such as building a national broadband network.

ISPs, consumers sign up for NBN Co’s FTTB pilot

The National Broadband Network Company has signed up four of Australia's major Internet service providers for its trial of Fibre to the Basement (FTTB) technology in its rollout, with ordinary consumers to be given a chance to test the technology and provide feedback on their experiences.

NZ Govt rejects Turnbull’s HFC cable approach

The New Zealand Government has reportedly explicitly rejected a proposal by Vodafone NZ which would have seen the country take a similar approach to the re-use of existing HFC cable assets in its own national broadband network rollout as the new Coalition Government is proposing to take in Australia.

Coalition front bench “technically illiterate”, says Ludlam

Greens Communications Spokesperson Scott Ludlam has described the Coalition's new front bench as "technically illiterate", in a wide-ranging speech in the Senate last week kicking off his campaign to be re-elected in the upcoming Senate by-election in Western Australia and attacking Prime Minister Tony Abbott over various tech-related issues, from Internet piracy to the National Broadband Network.

Why no consumer voices for Turnbull’s ministerial council?

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull's new Ministerial Advisory Council last week features representatives from virtually every major Australian telecommunications company of any note. But the group most important to the future of the Australian telco sector -- consumers -- appear not to have been invited.

“Witch hunt”? Turnbull opens Labor NBN policy review

Malcolm Turnbull has appointed seasoned executive and public figure Bill Scales to conduct what the Communications Minister today described as an "independent audit" of the policy development process which led to the previous Government's National Broadband Network project, in an effort which is already being described as a "witch hunt" against Labor.

Will hidden taxes and competitive pressures make the NBN unsustainable?

Is the National Broadband Network sustainable? I do not mean this in a technical sense. While I am wary of the government using taxpayers' money to ‘pick winners’ in technology, there are many people better placed than I am to crystal ball gaze into the best technology for the internet. Rather is the NBN economically sustainable?

Tasmania’s NBN tangle is a shocking mess

The ongoing stoush over how the Coalition's Broadband Network should be deployed in Tasmania shows Australia's broadband tangle at its worst: Construction contractors who don't deliver, overly optimistic promises and estimates, and politicians playing petty power games with a highly important national infrastructure project. No matter which way you look at it, it's a shocking mess.

Turnbull’s MTM CBN should not be a monopoly

The only way for Labor's all-fibre National Broadband Network to sensibly function was for it to be a legislated infrastructure monopoly. But the Coalition's watered-down, multi-technology alternative is a very different kettle of fish, and consumers will clearly benefit if rival telcos such as Telstra, Optus and TPG are allowed to overbuild portions of the network.

Telstra wants its foreign ownership rules reviewed

In the wake of the news that the Federal Government will try to weaken some areas of Qantas' foreign ownership rules in an effort to provide the airline with a level playing field with Virgin, Telstra chief executive David Thodey has called for the same debate to be held with respect to Telstra.

MyBroadband stoush: Turnbull attacks “foolish” IT academic

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has taken a pick axe to an article published by electrical and computer engineering academic Mark Gregory, claiming that the RMIT senior lecturer's criticism of the Government's new MyBroadband broadband tracker site constitutes a "confused and illogical" attack, and that Gregory had misunderstood the site's rating scale.

Optus pumps 2.3Gbps total through 4G towers

Optus last week announced it had achieved what it described as "a massive world first", generating a total of 2.3 gigabits per second (Gbps) site throughput on one of its custom-built mobile phone towers.

A voice in mainstream media on NBN

Senior Victorian IT professional George Fong encourages fellow technologists to get involved in commenting on the National Broadband Network, after the success of a segment he was involved with on 3AW last week.

Turnbull forces all Dept staff to re-apply for jobs

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has ordered all 550 staff at his Department of Communications to re-apply for their jobs, according to the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU), as part of a sizable cull that could see up to 125 jobs cut from the department.

Real speeds 25 percent slower than Turnbull MyBroadband tracker

The final analysis of a crowdsourced comparison of real-world broadband speeds has shown that the MyBroadband broadband availability site launched by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull last month is significantly inaccurate, with most Australians receiving speeds more than 25 percent slower than those listed.

Now Telstra threatens to do its own FTTB

The nation's largest telco Telstra has become the latest private sector player to threaten to deploy its own Fibre to the Basement solution in apartment blocks around Australia, in a move designed to both head off rivals and capitalise on delays suffered in Labor's National Broadband Network project.

NBN bitchslap: IT hero schools ignorant radio host

A senior IT professional specialising in regional telecommunications in Victoria yesterday afternoon delivered an extraordinarily erudite and pointed education to a 3AW radio host who had gone on an extended and inaccurate rant live on air, rebutting claims that the National Broadband Network project would cost $233 billion but deliver speeds no different to ADSL broadband.

Reality check: Tasmanian overhead FTTP trials have already been done

As the Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union argues today in an extremely valid point, there's no real need for more overhead FTTP trials in Tasmania -- those have already been done. I'd like to hear an answer from the Minister as to why we need more trials of overhead FTTP infrastructure in the Apple isle, when so much work along these lines has already been done.

Turnbull’s MyBroadband tracker overestimates broadband speeds

A crowdsourced comparison of real-world broadband speeds has appeared to show that the MyBroadband broadband availability site launched by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull last week is significantly inaccurate, with speeds being almost universally below the data produced by the site.

Abbott’s Tassie CBN fumble “embarassing”, says Labor

Labor's communications spokespeople have labelled Prime Minister Tony Abbott's failure to directly answer repeated questions about the rollout of the Coalition's Broadband Network in Tasmania an "embarassing spectacle", as the issue continues to be a major issue for the upcoming state election in March.

Ludlam a hot bachelor with “magnificent” hair

If you've been following the technology portfolio in politics for a while now, you'll know that we're pretty much spoilt for choice when it comes to the physical attractiveness of our representatives. Certain women of your writer's acquaintance have been heard to refer to Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull as "the Silver Fox", for instance, while Senator Kate Lundy has always been a favourite amongst the gentlemen. But now there's a new entrant onto the scene: Greens Communications Spokesperson Scott Ludlam.

Australia has fastest 4G speeds in world

Impressed by the 4G speeds offered by your provider, whether it's Telstra, Optus or Vodafone? You should be. According to a new study of 4G/LTE mobile speeds around the world, Australia has the fastest average speeds in the world.

Abbott dodges repeated Tassie FTTP questions

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has repeatedly declined to directly address questions about whether the Coalition deceived Tasmanian voters with respect to its support for an all-fibre broadband rollout in the state, in a tense press conference over the weekend in which journalists couldn't stop asking about the topic.

Pressured Turnbull agrees to aerial FTTP trials in Tasmania

Under siege from all sides of politics over the Federal Coalition's reluctance to pursue a full Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) broadband rollout in Tasmania, Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has spoken to NBN Co about the possibility of conducting FTTP trials in the state that would test Labor's plan to deploy fibre on aerial electricity poles.

NBN commences real-world FTTN, FTTB trials

The National Broadband Network Company today confirmed it would shortly kick off real-world trials in several locations in major Australian cities of the Fibre to the Node and Fibre to the Basement technologies which the Coalition plans to use as key parts of its own Broadband Network project, which is seeing Labor's all-fibre NBN vision heavily modified.

Revamped Telstra plans bundle yearly handset upgrade

The nation's largest telco Telstra has launched two new ranges of mobile phone plans, in addition to offering customers the option to pay $10 a month extra for the ability to trade in their smartphone once a year for a new model.

Turnbull insists Coalition’s NBN still “national”

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has hit out at critics of the Coalition's broadband policy, describing them as "ignorant" and insisting that the project still constitutes a "National" Broadband Network, despite the fact that the new Government is taking a multi-technology approach to the broadband rollout described by one senior analyst as a "dog's breakfast".

Court rules Optus coverage ads misleading

There you have it, folks -- in black and white. A court has decided that Telstra's network covers a geographic area nearly two and a half times greater in land mass than that of Optus. That's a figure we'll be pulling up regularly in future as Optus makes claims about its coverage.

Sensis to cut 800 staff

Telstra's advertising and directories business Sensis has revealed plans to cut about 800 jobs Australia-wide, in a move that one of the telco's main unions has immediately stated will "irreparably harm local economies and erode the nation’s skills base".

Google Fiber takes 1Gbps to 34 new US cities

US technology giant Google has announced that it will work with a further 34 cities in the US on deploying its high-speed Fibre to the Premises broadband infrastructure, in a move that further solidifies the long-term case for the FTTP deployment model globally.

Giddings offers NBN Co free access to power poles

Tasmanian Labor Premier Lara Giddings has offered the National Broadband Network Company free access to the overhead power poles of state-owned energy utility Aurora to incentivise a full rollout of Fibre to the Premises broadband in the state, as part of a package of technology policy promises associated with the State Election.

Union issues ‘please explain’ on 400 Sensis job cuts

Well, it didn’t take long. Just one month (one month!) after Telstra agreed to sell 70 percent of its ailing directories and advertising business Sensis to US-based private equity firm Platinum Equity, up to 400 jobs are reportedly set to be cut at the division.

Liberals admit: Turnbull CBN plan could lose Tasmanian election

Tasmanian Liberal Leader Will Hodgman has made the extraordinary admission that the Federal Coalition's unpopular broadband policy could cost the party the upcoming Tasmanian State Election, in the latest in a series of ongoing signs that the policy is not going down well in the island state.

Google Fiber will go to 10Gbps

Search giant Google has revealed it is planning to upgrade its residential-grade Google Fiber broadband network in the United States to 10Gbps; news that comes as Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has stated that it is "difficult, if not impossible" to find uses for a broadband service with speeds up to 1Gbps -- ten times less.

Cashed-up Telstra abandoning Aussie workforce, says union

One of Telstra's main unions has heavily criticised the company for a reported plan to send as many as 1,000 jobs offshore in yet another round of offshoring at the telco, stating that Telstra isn't treating its Australian workforce fairly in the context of its ongoing profit growth.

Tassie FTTN decision Visionstream’s fault, says Turnbull

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has explicitly blamed construction contractor Visionstream for the Federal Government's decision not to fully deploy the Fibre to the Premises model for the Coalition's Broadband Network in Tasmania, claiming the company was not able to deliver the infrastructure at the cost it agreed to.

Tasmanian Liberal Leader demands FTTP NBN

Tasmanian Liberal Leader Will Hodgman has reportedly spoken directly to Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull arguing "strongly" that Tasmania needs a full rollout of Fibre to the Premises broadband technology, as opposed to the partial FTTP and partial Fibre to the Node rollout outlined by NBN Co executive chairman Ziggy Switkowski this week.

Clare tables NBN petition in Parliament

Shadow Minister for Communications Jason Clare yesterday presented to Federal Parliament the signatures of 272,000 Australians who want the new Coalition Government to build Labor’s all-fibre version of the National Broadband Network instead of the technically inferior version which is currently being proposed.

Telstra kills mobile market; Optus, Vodafone wilt

The nation's largest telco Telstra has continued its incredibly strong drive to take back a huge slice of Australia's mobile market, adding 739,000 customers in a period in which both Optus and Vodafone appeared to go slightly backwards.

The NBN’s new kingpin plan: Exetel offers unlimited 100Mbps for $89.99

National broadband provider Exetel has unveiled a raft of new ADSL and Fibre-based broadband packages that appear to be extremely competitive compared with rival options on the market, including a headline option which offers early customers on the National Broadband Network unlimited downloads and 100Mbps speeds for $89.99 a month.

Telstra to offshore another 1,000, says AFR

Thought Telstra was finished with its wide-ranging outsourcing and offshoring initiatives? Not by half, if a report in the Financial Review newspaper this morning is to be believed.

Switkowski confirms FTTN for Tasmania

NBN Co executive chairman has confirmed the Coalition's Broadband Network model will see a Fibre to the Node deployment through at least part of Tasmania, in a move that the Opposition has branded as yet another example of "Liberal lies".

Vodafone launches 4G network in ACT

Vodafone yesterday officially launched its high-speed 4G network in the ACT, as the first stage of what it described as its "comprehensive LTE rollout in Canberra".

Another NBN Co head of construction resigns

The National Broadband Network Company has confirmed that it has lost its third head of construction in three years, with the company's executive general manager of construction Richard Thorpe having resigned and set to leave the company shortly.

NBN enjoys massive public support despite “overwhelmingly negative” print coverage

A new comprehensive study of public attitudes towards Labor's National Broadband Network project has found the initiative still enjoys very high levels of widespread public support from ordinary Australians, despite what the study described as an "overwhelmingly negative" approach to the project by print media such as newspapers.

Turnbull Blue Book access application fails

An attempt by technology media outlet Delimiter to retrieve the 'Blue Book' incoming ministerial briefing of Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull under Freedom of Information laws has failed, with the Federal Government as a whole appearing to standardise around interpreting its rights as blocking such documents wholesale.

“The NBN is dead,” says Jason Clare

Shadow Communications Minister Jason Clare yesterday said he believed Labor's National Broadband Network project was "dead" and that all that was left was "a bunch of different technologies rolling out in different parts of the country", despite the fact that most Australians still want the project to go ahead.

‘I have never misstated facts,’ says Turnbull

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has told radio listeners in Brisbane that he has never personally been guilty of deliberately misstating facts, despite the fact that a number of the Liberal MP's statements over the past several years with respect to national broadband policy have been highly contested by commentators.

Turnbull sends TPG share price into tailspin

A statement made yesterday by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull which appeared to have undercut the stability of Australia's telecommunications regulatory environment has had a dramatic impact on the share price of national broadband provider TPG, with the company's stock taking a steep dive yesterday.

Turnbull destabilises broadband regulatory environment

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has made a public statement which appears to have significantly undercut the stability of Australia's telecommunications regulatory environment, winding back the potential for telcos such as TPG and Optus to invest in their own broadband infrastructure ahead of the rollout of the Coalition's Broadband Network.

NBN Co director Milne has Netcomm conflict of interest

New NBN Co board director Justin Milne has a second significant conflict of interest which he does not appear to have resolved, it has emerged, as questions continue to swirl around the appointment process for NBN Co's new board and executive team under the Coalition.

Optus to operate CBN satellites

NBN Co announced over the weekend that it had signed a deal with Optus which will see the SingTel subsidiary provide tracking, telemetry and control services regarding NBN Co's two satellites planned to be launched in 2015.

BT hikes FTTP on demand prices

UK wholesale telco BT Openreach has substantially increased the prices it is charging customers for extending fibre broadband from local neighbourhood 'nodes' all the way to premises, in a move which calls into question the Coalition Federal Government's plan to use the service in its Coalition Broadband Network plan.

Greens want to “maximise” FTTP, says Ludlam

Greens Communications Spokesperson Scott Ludlam has accused the Coalition Government of 'pulling the plug' on Labor's National Broadband Network project and leaving Australians "stranded" on legacy copper infrastructure. In comparison, Ludlam said, the Greens were focused on "maximising the amount of optic fiber laid directly to premises".

Optus kicks off 2600MHz 4G trials

The nation's number two telco Optus this morning revealed it had kicked off trials of 4G mobile services using the 2600MHz frequency, as the nation's three major telcos continue to battle for mindshare in the next generation of mobile broadband services.

Voda Win: Vodafone’s back, baby

You might have noticed that there's a decidedly positive tenor to the announcements which ailing mobile telco Vodafone Australia has been making recently. The company's leadership in 4G mobile broadband speeds, its appointment of a qualified executive from Europe to replace outgoing leader Bill Morrow, and this morning, the news that it has a million customers on its 4G network.

“Policy vacuum”: iiNet slams politicians’ NBN ‘fail’

Australia's third-largest broadband player iiNet has opened a broadside on the nation's political class over the "policy vacuum" the ISP says exists in telecommunications policy, agreeing with veteran analyst Paul Budde that further discussion is needed around the actual uses of upgraded broadband infrastructure and less discussion of entry level broadband speeds.

Think big, Hackett tells Australians on eve of Internode departure

Internode founder Simon Hackett has exhorted Australians to think about their legacy and how they can "leave a good result behind", in a heartfelt speech given on the eve of his departure from the Internet service provider he founded and arrival as a board director at the National Broadband Network Company.

Is NBN Co’s FTTP ramp-up “pure fantasy”?

We've been hearing the same mantra from NBN Co for some years now with regards to its Fibre to the Premises network rollout. Initially moving, as Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull likes to describe it, "at the pace of an arthritic snail", NBN Co executives have long been fond of claiming that the company's rollout would speed up as time went on, in a "ramp-up" phenomenon. However, over at iTNews, journalist Ry Crozier has crunched the numbers and determined that the claim is just that -- a claim -- with no actual evidence of such a ramp-up in sight.

58% of Australians oppose privatising NBN

A new survey taken by respected analysis house Essential has shown that a total of 58 percent of Australians oppose privatising the National Broadband Network Company, around the same level as those opposing government-owned media groups the ABC and SBS.

“Incredible” NBN debate stuck in “yesterday’s logic”, says Budde

Respected telecommunications analyst Paul Budde has called for a more constructive debate about Australia's future broadband needs, arguing that the current national conversation over the issue of the National Broadband Network is stuck using "yesterday's logic" as it fails to plan for the needs of a future only five to ten years away.

Telstra tests 700MHz 4g on “advanced HTC smartphone”

The nation's biggest telco Telstra late last week revealed it had started testing the use of the 700MHz spectrum in its 4G mobile network, using equipment from Ericsson and "an advanced smartphone from HTC that will launch later this year".

Vodafone wallops Telstra, Optus in 4G speeds

A new series of independent tests has shown the 4G network of ailing mobile telco Vodafone can easily beat the rival networks of Telstra and Optus, at least in capital cities such as Sydney and Melbourne, with the telco claiming the results show it is the best option for streaming content and general Internet surfing.

Vodafone replaces Morrow with Romanian exec

Ailing national mobile telco Vodafone today revealed it would bring in Inaki Berroeta, chief executive of Vodafone Romania to replace its outgoing local leader Bill Morrow, who is set to take the reins of the National Broadband Network Company from March.

Coalition “conned” Tasmania on the CBN, says Premier

Labor Tasmanian Premier Lara Giddings has accused the Coalition Federal Government of having "conned the Tasmanian public" with respect to its plans for the Coalition's Broadband Network project in the state, having failed to commit to a full Fibre to the Premises rollout despite the State Government's willingness to work with Canberra on the issue.

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