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Aussies devour 13 billion hours of online content, broadband demand hits record high Featured

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Aussies devour 13 billion hours of online content, broadband demand hits record high Image courtesy of Stuart Miles, freedigitalphotos.net/images

Australians have devoured online content to the tune of 13 billion hours a year, while users of the National Broadband Network (nbn) have been consuming around 35% more data than the average Australian household.

The nbn’s own network traffic report show users of its broadband service used 112GB per month compared with the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) report revealing 83GB per month for the average household.   

The nbn says Australian demand for fast broadband is at a record high and Australian households are more connected than ever before.

Dennis Steiger, nbn’s Chief Technology Officer, says the (ABS) findings “reveal our nation has well and truly embraced the global streaming revolution as services such as Netflix, Stan and Presto have redefined the way we view and consume content”.

The ABS Internet Activity report released on Wednesday shows Australians downloaded a total of 6 million terabytes of data in 2015 – a 45% year-on-year increase.

Steiger says nbn’s network traffic report mirrors this growth with homes connected to the network “gobbling-up more than a third more data in 2015 than the same time last year” – or a 38% increase between December 2014 and December 2015.

 “The significant increase in usage over the nbn network tells us the more bandwidth Australians have, the more content we want to consume. With forecasts showing the amount of connected devices is predicted to grow from nine to 29 by 2020, access to fast broadband will be critical in allowing us to continue to enjoy uninterrupted viewing on multiple devices at the same time.”

And here’s a summary of the nbn’s network traffic report for the period December 2014 to December 2015:

•    The average total data usage (upload and download) per end-user on services over the nbn is 128GB per month

•    The average total download usage end-user on services over the nbn is 112GB per month


•    The average total upload usage end-user on services over the nbn is 16GB per month.

Steiger also points out that the figures released by the ABS follow other recent research showing the usage growth in video on-demand services and connected devices in the home:

•    Forecasts predict there will be more than 4.7 million video on-demand Australian subscribers by 2019 – (Ovum, Australian OTT Video, November 2015)


•    The average number of connected devices in Australian homes is predicted to more than triple from eight to 29 by 2020 – (Telsyte, ‘Internet Uninterrupted, Australian Households of the Connected Future’, October – November 2015)

•    On average Aussie households have at least two televisions sets (42 per cent are connected to the Internet) and at least 1 tablet per household – (Ovum, Australian OTT Video, November 2015)


•    At usage peak times, households are predicted to have 12 simultaneous applications connecting to the Internet over multiple devices in 2020, up from the current eight – (Telsyte, ‘Internet Uninterrupted, Australian Households of the Connected Future’, October – November 2015).

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Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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