The NBN for business
In April this year, Greens’ health spokesperson, Paul O'Halloran, stated the government should introduce incentives for businesses to take up the NBN in Tasmania.
“There needs to be an equivalent push to encourage local businesses and retailers to see the economic advantage that this infrastructure could provide them. We need to see a take-up timetable with projected benchmarks for local businesses, as well as any incentive packages,” he said.
However, Kelleher says additional incentives for businesses to connect to the NBN are not needed because the benefits the network will bring are incentive enough.
“I think it doesn’t really need any additional incentives – they’re already going to be connected, and [as they learn] they will choose as to what additional features and capacities that they want that will help their own particular business needs…” Kelleher says.
“The choice is do they want to do more than just have a basic and the very minimum telephone connection?”
The federal government has not been short on allocating funding to build awareness of the NBN in Tasmania.
In May this year, the state government allocated $1 million to four industry groups (each group received $250,000) to run programs under the NBN Industry Assistance Package.
The program was set up to help businesses in Tasmania to learn about the NBN and how to make the most of the network, such as using high-speed video conferencing, social media marketing and smartphone applications.
Tasmania’s NBN future
Once Tasmania is 100 per cent covered via fibre, fixed wireless or satellite, Kelleher says it will make a “dramatic difference” and will have a better understanding of the opportunities and benefits of the network as new products are developed.
“It’s not very far away, but in the rate of advancement of all these applications that one finds on the iPhone and iPad and all those things, you can imagine in another three years what sort of things will be available,” he says.
“It’s going to be hard to imagine really what that’s going to look like other than it’ll be a much more connected place. I would hope to see a while range of new businesses being established in Tasmania to take advantage of this situation.”
Follow Stephanie McDonald on Twitter: @stephmcdonald0
Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU