Truth: Tassie FTTP pledge raises questions about Labor’s broader NBN policy


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  1. “The most obvious question that Labor hasn’t answered regarding the FTTP policy for the West Coast of Tasmania is why that region would get FTTP under Labor, when the rest of the nation will most probably not.”

    Probably because the West Coast was getting effectively nothing installed on the ground, therefore there is no FTTN crud in the way of the promised, reneged by Turnbull, FTTP install.

    I assume that Labor will install as much fibre as possible. How much that can be won’t be knowable until the NBNCo cone of silence is lifted.

    So “probably not” is a bit strong.

        • I don’t see any problem with Labor getting access to the data. The NBN company’s forward rollout plans are very well understood at this point, especially because of all the leaks.

          • The rollout plans may be, but am I wrong in thinking the contracts are not?

            Wouldn’t what Labor can do, be limited by what is in the contracts?

            Also why can’t Tassie be the first cab off the rank, rather than the only taxi in town?

      • Renai, partially I’m expecting labor to announce a phased transition back to full FTTP to avoid the 2.5 years of bugger all that occurred under the LNP.

        I think it highly likely that all short-term FTTN contracts will be honored with all medium term contracts redone to switch to FTTP with a promise that all MtM areas will be rebuilt with fibre once the rest of the country is substantially finished… In an NBN phase 2 if you will. I suspect this will be the case with HFC too however that depends entirely how much of a Charlie Foxtrot that has become. The trial results aren’t exactly great and it sounds like the costs of DOCSIS 3.1 are almost at FTTP levels.

        • “it sounds like the costs of DOCSIS 3.1 are almost at FTTP levels.”

          The MTM just gets worse and worse. Good money after bad. US telcos recognise this.

        • I hope you’re right. Labor could easily pitch it as “saving tens of billions over the long term.”

  2. To be honest I don’t find this problematic. OK. A part of Tasmania that has been treated abominably, and lied to, gets FTTP ahead of most of Australia. But FTTP is inevitable anyway so why not start with West Tasmania? Of course there is political self-interest in an election year to get votes. I also think that Tasmania, as an island of an island continent, should always have been first under Labor’s 93% FTTP anyway, having to put up with enough such as the Basslink issues; Taswegians deserve something to go right. Tasmania is also a world-class cheese and food specialities producer that needs FTTP to grab the world market.

    p.s I DO NOT live in Tasmania and don’t plan to. The last time I went was 1982 and it was lovely.

    • “Tasmania is also a world-class cheese and food specialities producer that needs FTTP to grab the world market.”

      You kind of had me with this comment until that point, where I went … WTF :)

  3. I like the idea that any area that is subject to Satellite be reconsidered if it doesn’t meet the density criteria. At least then a plausible ‘took a look, can’t make it happen’ can be done.

  4. I think the ALP might have hit on a real ‘vote-winner’. If all it takes for marginal seats to flick from Libs to ALP is a promise for FTTP, the ALP might buy the election cheap.

    Current Parliament: Coalition 90 ALP 55 Other 5

    At $29M per electorate, ALP may only need to spend: $29M * 20 seats; $580M; about 10% of NBN’s 2017 CAPEX budget. Though the rural towns are probably a lot cheaper than running fibre through a suburban electorate. Might be a good rural strategy.

    • You’re underestimating the self destructive pig headedness of the conservative voter. That was, after all, more or less, the choice to be made at the last election as well…

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