Wednesday, 19 September 2018 09:10

Extension for moving special business services to NBN opposed

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Phillip Britt: "We believe the Big Four [Telstra, Optus, Vodafone and TPG] have had enough financial advantages already from the introduction of the NBN; they don’t need any more.” Phillip Britt: "We believe the Big Four [Telstra, Optus, Vodafone and TPG] have had enough financial advantages already from the introduction of the NBN; they don’t need any more.” Supplied

Small broadband provider Aussie Broadband has voiced its opposition to a proposal to extend the disconnection date for special business services to migrate from legacy infrastructure to the NBN.

The company's managing director, Phillip Britt, said in a statement: “Quite frankly, I think any pushback is a bad idea."

Both Telstra and Optus, the number one and two telcos, recently voiced their approval for an extension of time for the migration of these services to the NBN.

Britt said he had noticed this push to delay the start of disconnections which are due to begin on 12 November.

Businesses which are using special services have the option to move to either the NBN or a non-NBN service.

“The telecommunications industry has had plenty of time to prepare for this, and plenty of time to work with business and government customers to prepare them," said Britt.

"A three-year rollout is a reasonable period of time, and a good-quality telco can help business customers to smooth out the process.

“It seems obvious to us that there would be significant financial benefit to the larger telcos if the status quo was to hang on, and likewise a disadvantage to challenger ISPs such as ourselves.

“We believe the Big Four [Telstra, Optus, Vodafone and TPG] have had enough financial advantages already from the introduction of the NBN; they don’t need any more.”

Britt was also of the opinion that if the dates were pushed back, then the NBN’s business case would be further damaged.

“Yes, there are lots of migrations to be done, yes it’s going to be difficult – but let’s just get on and get it done,” he said. “We’re ready, and we don’t see why anyone else is not.

“We strongly urge the ACCC to reject any pushback of the dates.”

Update, 3pm: An NBN Co representative said: "Our priority is to ensure all customers have the a smooth migration to the NBN access network – through our industry consultation we identified an in-train order process as an option to help safeguard disconnections of customers who have placed an order for special business services but were not able to fully connect them before their disconnection date.

"The in-train order process provides additional safeguards for businesses as it ensures that if they place an order move services to the NBN access network before their disconnection date, they will have 170 business days to migrate before having the legacy services are switched off.

"We understand migration for businesses can take some time so we are encouraging all businesses who use Ethernet-Lite and Wholesale BDSL in areas where the NBN access network is available to speak with their provider about placing an order to move them to the new network before their disconnection date.

"We have worked closely with the industry on this change and have provided service providers with three years notice to contact their customers as part of this process."

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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