Final NBN first release site now live in South Australia


Today marks the end of the first release National Broadband Network (NBN) trial sites on mainland Australia, with a celebration held at the fifth and final site in Willunga, South Australia.

Willunga, 47 kilometres south of Adelaide, is the first location in South Australia to gain access to the high-speed NBN and the last of five initial trial locations to go live on mainland Australia.

It was the only site where 100 per cent of the underground infrastructure had to be built — NBN Co had to install a number of puts and pipes rather than being able to make use of existing underground or overhead infrastructure that was found at the four other sites.

940 premises in Willunga are covered by the network, with 91% or 860 premises having consented to having a free connection to the network.

More than 150 invited residents and businesses in the region will begin trialling the network until October, when the network will come out of a trial phase and all connected residents will be able to sign up for NBN plans.

“What’s really exciting… is that today marks the start of a new era of broadband possibilities for people in Willunga’s homes, businesses and schools that now have access to the NBN,” NBN Co CEO Mike Quigely said today. “They now have the benefits of fibre optic connections to the NBN behind them.”

Willunga’s Business and Tourism Association and the Southern Success Business Enterprise Centre have begun a series of initiatives for a number of local businesses, teaching them how to make the most of the NBN.

“The Willunga First Release rollout represents the collective efforts of many people, including our construction partner ETSA Utilities,” Quigley said. “They did a great job from start to finish.”

NBN Co says it chose the Willunga site because it allowed them to work in an established rural area that provided a diverse range of housing types and situations the organisation expects to discover as it rolls the network out across Australia.

Attention now turns to the next phase of the NBN project on mainland Australia, with work already underway on the first of many second release sites. NBN Co is also preparing to begin work on a number of rural 4G LTE sites that’ll provide wireless high-speed broadband.

Image Credit: NBN Co


  1. iirc South Australia is opt-out so it’ll be interesting to see how many of those 860 premises sign up for a fibre plan and how soon they get it. If it’s close to 100% that would be something, if it’s between 60 and 90% the coalition will look very foolish, if it’s about 50% this will then be in line with the numbers from Brunswick that is opt-in which is more likely to have people sign up for fibre plans. Also keep in mind the majority of people in Willunga have no real aversion to the NBN being built else they would have opted out following Brunswick logic lol… and then there are the 80 premises that have chosen to use a wireless connection for their broadband and telephony needs (yes I am assuming that) Nice pic btw.

    • Knowing Willunga as I do (a small rural SA town, that is to say), I would bet that numbers there won’t be stellar … I think a lot of people there wouldn’t know what to do with fibre until we get some decent subscription television services over it.

        • Fortuna no one is debating the 91% NBN ready number what we are talking about now is how many eventually take up a service with an ISP.

      • Which isn’t going to be for a while, Foxtel has exclusive rights on a lot of the important content at the moment, and I don’t see them making moves to deliver content over the NBN platform.

        • Why?

          They’ll still be exclusive. The Foxtel service would just be provisioned over a second virtual circuit of 20Mbps and connected to another of the UNI-Dx ports – into which a STB would be connected.

          This is why the NTUs have multiple ports.

          The only thing that will stop Foxtel from offering services is that they don’t have a licence to operate in regional areas – (except WA and Gold Coast).

          Austar would cover Willunga.

          But then again, if the Foxtel / Austar merger goes through…

          …my brain hurts for a Monday.

          • Maybe, maybe not. But if you want Foxtel/Austar, and you’re in an area they’ve decreed will be served over the NBN, you’ll have it, whether it’s “popular” or not.

            The average schmo won’t care if it’s over cable, satellite, or NBN, as long as it works.

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