Monday, 13 August 2018 10:59

ACCC reports third of NBN users now on 'higher speed plans'

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Residential broadband customers "continue to shift to higher speed NBN plans, with more than one third of all NBN services now on 50Mbps plans", according to the ACCC’s 10th quarterly Wholesale Market Indicators Report released today.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission released its newest "Wholesale Market Indicators Report" in the usual Excel and PDF formats on Monday.

The report for the quarter "ended 30 June also shows more providers are connecting to more points of interconnection (POIs), increasing competition.

"The number of 50Mbps services increased by 47% over the March quarter and nearly 1.5 million customers are now on these high-speed plans, up from just 159,000 in December 2017."

"The increase in the number of 50Mbps plans for two consecutive quarters reflects the market’s response to the incentives provided under the NBN’s ‘Focus on 50’ promotion which includes wholesale discounts and credits to encourage RSPs to move their customers to 50Mbps plans."

ACCC chair Rod Sims said: "A more than nine-fold increase in 50Mbps services so far this year shows that higher speed plans can be delivered if the incentives are right. We are pleased to see retailers responding to their customers’ needs."

By the end of June 2018, the ACCC reports there were "at least seven access seeker groups acquiring services at 117 POIs, up from 95 POIs at the end of the March quarter".

"All 121 POIs have at least six providers connected, including five providers (Telstra, Optus, TPG, Vocus and Aussie Broadband) who are connected at all POIs. MyRepublic are at 99 of the NBN POIs and have plans to connect at all 121 POIs in the near future. Vodafone are at 91 of the POIs."

Sims continued: “It is good for competition that retail service providers with smaller market share like Vodafone and MyRepublic are connecting customers at a greater number of points of interconnect."

Average CVC per user rose from 1.55Mbps in March 2018 to 1.66Mbps in June 2018, a seven per cent increase.

“The average CVC per user is an important indicator of how service providers are provisioning their network to meet customers’ expectations of broadband speeds. While the amount of CVC acquired by each RSP will differ, RSPs must ensure they have enough CVC to continue to deliver strong broadband speeds to their customers, even during peak periods.

“The ACCC’s actions to monitor broadband performance and guarantee transparency in advertised speeds have contributed to RSPs provisioning enough CVC for their customer base.”

The ACCC will continue to monitor broadband speeds and CVC usage to ensure that consumers can get services which match their advertised claims. Overall market shares of the main players remained stable.

Key points from the June 2018 report:

  • The number of 50Mbps services continued to grow, reaching more than 1.45M services at the end of June, a 47% increase in relation to the March quarter.
  • 50Mbps plans now account for 35% of all NBN residential broadband services.
  • The number of 25Mbps plans declined by 15% in relation to the previous quarter while the number of 12Mbps services increased 5 per cent and 100Mbps services fell 3%.
  • At the end of June, NBN Co was supplying a total of 4,133,791 wholesale residential broadband access services (up from 3,813,994 in the March quarter).
  • At the end of the June quarter, access seekers were acquiring a total of 6,990Gbps of CVC capacity, a 16% increase compared to the end of March.

The ACCC also advises its "Wholesale Market Indicators Report discloses key information on the number of wholesale access services acquired over the NBN as detailed in the NBN Services in Operation Record Keeping Rule and required under part XIC of the Competition and Consumer Act (2010).

"The report covers the number of NBN services in operation by access technology type such as FttP, FttB, FttN, HFC, fixed wireless and satellite. 

"It also covers these services by geographic region, speed tier and traffic class – voice (traffic class 1), business (traffic class 2) and residential broadband (traffic class 4).  The report also includes data on the total contracted CVC capacity on the NBN and the number of access seeker groups who directly connect with NBN Co at each NBN point of interconnect (POI).

"An NBN wholesale access service is used by an NBN access seeker to supply a retail service directly to its own customers or, alternatively, to supply a wholesale service to another retail service provider.

"Most retail service providers do not directly connect with NBN Co and resell NBN services acquired from other NBN access seekers (such as Telstra and Optus). Those RSPs are not separately identified in this report.

"The NBN Services in Operation Record Keeping Rule Disclosure Direction was varied in March 2018 and now requires NBN Co to report more detailed information. This includes reporting by each state and territory, reducing the threshold for identifying access seekers to one per cent market share and a new table (Table 8) outlining the number and type of AVC and the amount of CVC acquired on a POI by POI basis."

The report is available in full here

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