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No surprise that NBN-connected homes use more data than homes without: latest NBN Co stats

NBN Co has announced that homes with an NBN connection are "gobbling up" 23% more data per year than the "average home", in what is the latest non-surprise from the stats.

NBNCo has a habit of releasing stats that are obvious: people with NBN use more data, do more video conferencing, use more cloud services, get things done online faster, and so on and so forth.

I guess, when you are set up by the government to be another Telstra, you have a lot of middle management staff sitting around with not much to do except write reports on how NBN makes life easier, better, faster, etc etc.

Why these staff aren’t learning how to splice fibre is probably easy to understand: that’s the dirty work, and if you can sit in an office all day being an effective public servant on big bucks, then why not? It certainly pays a heck of a lot more than journalism, and there's no fibres to splice or hands to get muddied. 

One of NBN Co’s higher-up executives is Sarah Palmer, "the executive general manager, Product and Pricing."

Palmer said: “The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Internet Activity Report, released today shows Aussies downloaded a record high 2.5 billion GB of data in 2016 (in the three months ending 31 December), with the average home downloading 117GB per month, a 41% year-on-year increase.

“Homes connected to services over the NBN network are downloading around 144GB of data each month which is a 32% year-on-year increase and around 1.2 times the national fixed-line average and 76 times the mobile average.

“When streaming services such as Netflix and Stan entered Australian living rooms in 2015, we saw an unprecedented surge in data consumption over the nbn network. These figures confirm Australia’s insatiable appetite for consuming online content is continuing to grow.

“With forecasts from Telsyte showing the amount of connected devices is predicted to grow from 14 to 29 by 2020 (according to Telsyte’s Australian Digital Consumer Study 2017), access to fast broadband will be critical in allowing us to continue to enjoy uninterrupted viewing on multiple devices at the same time.

“It’s important for households who stream a lot of online content to speak with their service provider and choose a plan which suits their needs as well as check they have the correct in-home equipment so they can enjoy the best Internet experience possible.

“There are now two million households and businesses which have signed up to the NBN network through a retail service provider,” Palmer concluded.

As part of its media release noting the obvious that those with an NBN connection are more likely to download a heck of a lot more than those still waiting for an NBN connection to grace their streets and homes is a series of NBN stats.

We are told the following: 

  • Total downloads on NBN network = 646 million GB (Oct – Dec 2016).
  • The average subscriber or household on the NBN network downloaded 144 GB of data per month from Oct to Dec 2016 (up 32 per cent year on year).
  • The average subscriber or household on the NBN network uploaded 16 GB of data from Oct to Dec 2016 (steady year on year). 
  • The average household or subscriber’s total usage (upload and download) on the NBN network was 160 GB of data from Oct to Dec 2016. (up 28% year on year).
  • NBN connected Aussies refers to Australians connected to services over the NBN network.


Image from Flickr by John Lester, copyright John Lester. Image obviously modified by me, here is the license I must link to.  


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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.