Telstra installs 1000th ADSL2+ 'Top Hat'

Telstra said it expects to upgrade 1850 cabinets by year end.

Telstra has passed the halfway point in a project to upgrade 350,000 homes and businesses to ADSL2+ fixed broadband, the telco announced on its blog. The project, which Telstra calls “Top Hat,” places broadband boxes on top of the telco’s existing street-side cabinets.

Telstra ADSL2+ provides speeds of up to 20Mbps downstream and 1Mbps up. While faster than older DSL, the new asymmetric DSL technology is still slower than fibre being built under the NBN, especially for uploads.

Telstra said it’s just turned on its 1000th Top Hat — in Moruya, New South Wales — after investing $80 million to bring ADSL2+ to 200,000 homes and businesses. Telstra said 100,000 of the customers have upgraded to ADSL2+ from ADSL, “while the remaining 100,000 services provide the opportunity for new customers to access fast fixed broadband for the first time”.

By year end, Telstra expects to have Top Hats on 1850 cabinets, serving more than 350,000 fixed broadband services, it said.

“Thanks to an innovative idea, and the hard work of countless others from across the business, we’ve been able to bring video streaming, digital business and connected home services to more people across every state and territory who previously couldn’t access these things,” Telstra networks executive director, Mike Wright, wrote in a blog post.

A list of locations to be upgraded is available on the Telstra Wholesale website.

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