news 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 (NBN).
As the NBN rolls out across Australia, Telstra’s fixed line network will be compulsorily switched off 18 months after the national network is activated in the region.
To date, 154 regions have passed their compulsory disconnection date, meaning over 300,000 premises have had to make the switch for their phone and broadband services. Throughout 2016 alone, the number of regions reaching their disconnection date is expected to triple.
For users, the transfer to the NBN will involve the installation of new equipment, increased broadband speeds and, ideally, a predictable, smooth migration to the new system.
The MAP statement outlines a number of assurance principles and sets out expectations concerning the roles and responsibilities of service providers to ensure the migration process is predictable and straightforward for consumers.
A smooth migration process will be increasingly essential in coming years as the NBN rollout quickly expands. The network’s three-year plan for the rollout will expand to include more than nine million homes and businesses across the country by the end of 2018.
This new policy is the result of “extensive collaboration” between the Australian Government, NBN Co and Telstra, and is informed by feedback from stakeholders, industry and public submissions on the draft framework, Communications Minister Mitch Fifield said in a statement.
The MAP sets out the importance of “consistent and accurate” information and data sharing between parties to make connecting to the fibre NBN a trouble-free process.
The policy lists four main “pillars” which support the successful switchover from Telstra’s copper and HFC networks to the NBN fixed-line network:
- Serviceability – to ensure a working service is available at the premise when an order is placed. Previously, around 30% of premises declared ready to connect were not actually serviceable as the physical network had not been connected. This figure is now less than 5% due to the NBN’s new processes to ensure more end users are ready to connect when areas go live. Any remaining unserviceable premises are considered for bespoke construction solutions.
- Product availability – a suitable product range to meet consumer needs.
- End-user awareness and management – the need for consistent and timely information and support for households and businesses.
- Installation and activation – the timely completion of orders for an nbn service.
The MAP, the government said, resolves its legacy of early rollout areas that were plagued by problems including network shortfalls, which caused extended waiting times for connections; ordering system errors; and inconsistent data, which led to missed appointments and occasional unexpected disconnections.
Other early problems that are being addressed include inappropriate equipment placement, accuracy of information from installers, and general consumer understanding about the nbn installation process, according to the statement.
The policy and framework are planned to be updated as needed over time, including addressing any additional issues as they arise.
Image credit: NBN company