Friday, 19 February 2021 11:36

ACCC: 8.1m broadband connections now on the NBN, more than 5.5m are 50Mbps or better Featured

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There are now more than 8.1 million household and business services connected to the NBN, according to a new ACCC report.

The ACCC's (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission) "Wholesale Market Indicators Report", released today, shows 3.6% growth in the December 2020 quarter, meaning an additional 279,347 new households and businesses connected to the NBN.

This coincided with the Minister for Communications declaring in late 2020 that the NBN build was complete and fully operational.

We're told that almost 5.5 million broadband connections, or 68% of all services acquired from NBN, are on higher speed tiers of "50Mbps and above, including about 16% of wholesale services acquired at speeds of 100Mbps or above."

ACCC Chair Rod Sims said: “Most customers now use the higher speed tiers, which is a result of more retail service providers promoting higher speed plans.

“NBN Co’s new incentives to retail service providers, such as its Focus on Fast promotion, is welcome as many Australians now work and study from home at least some of the time. Customers should consider their usage and needs, and explore whether these promotions offer them a better deal.”

The ACCC said "retail service providers acquired slightly less bandwidth in the December quarter which led to total Connectivity Virtual Circuit (CVC) per user falling marginally from 2.59Mbps to 2.44Mbps."

Sims added: “NBN’s temporary COVID-19 CVC boost offer has expired, so it’s important that retail service providers provide sufficient CVC capacity for consumers to continue to receive the speeds they are paying for, particularly during periods of high demand."

Wholesale market shares remained stable in the December quarter. While Telstra’s share of services acquired from NBN fell slightly to 45.5%, the market shares of the other large retail service providers were largely unchanged.

Among the smaller retail service providers, Aussie Broadband increased its overall market share to 4.2% in the December quarter, up from 3.9% in the previous quarter. Other small retail service providers accounted for the remaining share of 3.3%.

The ACCC reports retail service providers also continue to expand their reach to more NBN points of interconnection and notes "there were at least 11 retail service providers connected at all of the 121 NBN points of interconnection at the end of the December quarter, up from the 9 reported at the end of September. At least 12 different providers were connecting at 112 of the points of interconnection."

Sims concluded: “Having more retail service providers directly connecting with NBN’s network increases competition and provides more choice for consumers. Customers can shop around to compare retail offers, to see if they can get a better deal."

Further information, including time series data, is available on the ACCC website at NBN Wholesale Market Indicators

 

Background provided by the ACCC:

The ACCC’s Wholesale Market Indicators Report contains information on NBN’s provision of services to retail service providers. It does not provide information regarding the services supplied by retail service providers to end users.

Retail service providers use the NBN’s wholesale access service to supply retail services to its own customers or, alternatively, to supply a wholesale service to another (usually smaller) retail service provider.

Most small retail service providers do not directly connect with NBN Co. Instead, these small retail service providers resell NBN services that they buy from larger retail service providers, such as Telstra, TPG and Optus.


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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.

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