Thursday, 09 November 2017 11:10

NBN users still avoiding highest speed plans: ACCC Featured

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Only 12% of those who have connected to the national broadband network as of 30 September have opted to take the fastest plans — 100Mbps/40Mbps — according to data collected by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, which shows that a shade over three million people are connected.

In its seventh quarterly NBN Wholesale Market Indicators Report, the competition watchdog said the most popular plans were those offering 25Mbps download speeds, which accounted for 55% of all those connected.

The take-up for 12Mbps was 29% and only 4% opted for 50Mbps plans, according to the report.

ACCC chairman Rod Sims said there was a clear indication that competition was increasing among retail service providers as they had built enough scale to directly connect with the NBN at points of interconnection.

“This report provides a clear indication of the level of competition developing over the NBN,” he said.

“Some of the small players are experiencing rapid growth and this shows promise for future competition. Direct connection will allow smaller retail service providers to have more control over their network in terms of how much connectivity virtual circuit they provision.”

The report found that more CVC was being acquired per user – from 1.09Mbps per user at the end of June to 1.11Mbps at the end of September.

Sims said this was encouraging as provisioning adequate CVC was essential if RSPs were to ensure households and businesses could get the speeds they were promised.

“The ACCC’s current consultation proposing more detailed reporting by NBN Co should improve our understanding of CVC provisioning and use, particularly concerning times when congestion limits are reached," he added.

The report also found that the proportion of broadband access services acquired at metropolitan POIs had gone up from 33% in September 2016 to 41% in the current quarter.

Key findings in the September report:

  • NBN Co was supplying a total of 3,038,483 wholesale broadband access services (up from 2,511,392 services in the June quarter).
  • Demand for aggregate network capacity (CVC) continued to increase, with NBN Co contracted to supply 3452Gbps (up from 2820Gbps in the June quarter).
  • The amount of CVC acquired per user increased to 1.11Mbps (up from 1.09Mbps per user in the June quarter).
  • The number of premises connected via HFC almost doubled.
  • There are 26 access seeker groups directly connected to NBN Co’s network. Of these, the top four (Telstra, Optus, TPG Group and Vocus) are connected at all 121 POIs and:
    • at all 121 POIs there is at least one additional access seeker;
    • at 112 of the POIs there are at least two additional access seekers; and
    • at 71 of the POIs there are at least three more access seekers.

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Sam Varghese

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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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