by Byron Connolly

NBN rollout hits halfway mark

Jul 10, 2017
Education Industry Government Healthcare Industry

NBN Co on Monday said the rollout of the national broadband network had officially passed the halfway point with one in two Australians now able connect to the service.

The company said more than 5.7 million homes and businesses can now order a service from their retailer, claiming it is adding an average of 100,000 new properties each week.

NBN said it also planned to start construction across the business hubs within the capital cities and outer metro regions of the Bendigo, Gladstone, Geelong, the Gold Coast, and Port Macquarie.

NBN’s chief customer officer, John Smith, said in a statement that around 20,000 businesses are being connected to the network each month.

“Our team will continue to ramp-up the rollout to help meet this demand in the coming months as we start further construction work across the capital cities and outer metro areas,” he said.

CEO Bill Morrow claimed the NBN rollout of the “most complex undertaking this country has seen and possibly the world has seen when you consider the vast size of our land.”

“We are using some of the most advanced technologies around network builds. We are using existing infrastructure and deploying new at the same time – and we are doing this in a record time,” Morrow claimed.

In the lead up to reaching the halfway mark, NBN last month made several changes to its company structure to shift the emphasis from ‘network build’ to ‘network operate and optimise’ as more users are connected.

NBN also last month began trialling fibre-to-the-curb (FTTC) technology in Coburg in Melbourne.

NBN is the first broadband wholesaler in the world out FTTC technology, which provides fibre-to-the-driveway. The company claimed the technology would benefit more than 1 million homes and businesses by 2020.

NBN expects the national broadband network to be 75 per cent completed by mid-2018 and complete by 2020.