Internet service provider TPG has launched its National Broadband Network plans, with all six of the offers including unlimited data quotas. The plans are TPG's first NBN offerings; the ISP foreshadowed offering an unlimited NBN data plan in 2012, but it hasn't started to sign up customers for NBN services until now.
The plans are offered at two of the NBN speed tiers: 12/1 megabits per second down/1Mbps up, and 100Mbps down/40Mbps up. The cheapest TPG NBN plan is priced at $59.99 for 12/1Mbps and includes a phone service. The other two 12/1Mbps plan include various telephone services, such as unlimited local and national calls.
The 100/40Mbps plans follow a similar pattern; the plans start at $89.99. All plans include a free Wi-Fi router.
TPG general manager Craig Levy pointed to the telco's own "substantial telecommunications infrastructure" as the reason it was able to "offer these new plans at market leading price points".
"We own fibre connecting to NBN’s points of interconnect. We own the inter-capital bandwidth following our recent acquisition of AAPT," Levy said in a statement.
"We own the undersea PPC-1 submarine cable system connecting Australia to the international internet. With domestic peering arrangements with Telstra and Optus and one of the largest fixed voice networks in Australia, we are in a privileged position to bring extraordinary value to consumers."
TPG has previously indicated it would consider offering unlimited 100Mbps FTTB plans for $69.99 — cheaper than the baseline 100Mbps FTTP NBN plan revealed today.
NBN Co has expressed concern at TPG's infrastructure ambitions after the telco revealed it intended start offering fibre-to-the-basement — a move that could potentially undercut NBN Co revenue in lucrative areas.
The move risks running awry of so-called 'anti-cherry picking' rules designed to stop telcos building infrastructure that could compete with the NBN. TPG earlier this year, in a submission to the government-appointed panel conducting a cost-benefit analysis of the NBN, made the case for infrastructure competition.
"Infrastructure based competition delivers the best outcome to end users," TPG argues in its submission. "The NBN was not intended to be a fixed line monopoly and it should not be a fixed line monopoly."
NBN Co chairman Ziggy Switkowski believes that cherry picking could "severely" impact upon the economics of the NBN. Shadow communications minister Jason Clare this week also issued a warning about the potential for cherry picking to damage the NBN.
"The government needs to close the gap," Clare told the CommsDay summit on Wednesday.
"If you're going to build an NBN network, then there should be one body—the NBN Co—building a universal wholesale market. If they don’t do that, then it threatens the financial viability of the NBN Co."