NBN end users approach 100Mbps with FTTN

300 more nodes to add 45,000 premises to FTTN rollout

One of the first end users to be connected as part of NBN Co's trial of fibre-to-the-node technology has hit download speeds of 96 megabits per second and upload speeds of 30Mbps, the company charged with rolling out the National Broadband Network revealed today.

NBN revealed earlier this year its engineers had achieved raw speeds 105Mbps down and 45Mbps up in a FTTN test that didn't involve any end users.

A statement issued by communications minister Malcolm Turnbull said that FTTN users in the trial were achieving speeds of around 100/30Mbps over distances greater than 500 metres.

Location Download Upload Approx Distance from NBN node
Trafalgar Ave Umina Beach 98 Mbps 33 Mbps 475 Metres
Britannia St Umina Beach 98 Mbps 33 Mbps 190 Metres
Australia St Umina Beach 97 Mbps 30 Mbps 515 Metres
Bourke Rd Umina Beach 97 Mbps 28 Mbps 390 Metres
Oxford St Umina Beach 98 Mbps 28 Mbps 250 Metres

Source: Department of Communications

Under a statement of expectations issued by the government in April NBN Co has been given a mandate to use a mixture of technologies for the NBN, including FTTN in the majority of brownfield areas.

The government's statement of expectations backed a scenario, contained in a strategic review of NBN Co operations carried out last year that involves the use of HFC for connecting premises in areas where HFC networks exist; FTTP in brownfields areas where it’s the “most economical choice” either because of high revenue potential or because of the cost of FTTN; FTTN in areas with lower revenue potential; the use of fibre-to-the-basement especially for large apartment blocks; and the use of fixed wireless and satellite for 6 per cent of premises.

The original Labor-backed design for the NBN was based on primarily using fibre-to-the-premises technology to connect homes and businesses to the network.

NBN Co and Telstra earlier this year announced a deal, reportedly worth $150 million, to pilot the design and construction of around 1000 nodes.

That agreement "involves planning, design and construction of the FTTN technology after which the companies will contemplate piloting the connection of premises to the NBN. Customer migration is not part of the construction trial," according to an NBN Co factsheet.

The agreement with Telstra covers Belmont, Boolaroo, Gorokan, Hamilton and Morisset in NSW; and in Bribie Island, Bundaberg, Caboolture, Gympie and Warner in Queensland.

NBN Co is conducting separate FTTN trials at Umina in NSW and Epping in Victoria.

Separate to the Telstra deal the organisation plans to build some 300 nodes in Warner, Queensland, and Woy Woy, New South Wales, as part of its FTTN trials.

These nodes will add some 45,000 premises to the NBN's FTTN footprint.

"Our plans to build more than 300 additional nodes on top of our construction trial with Telstra will see us benchmark industry best practices as we gear up for wide-scale deployment of the FTTN technology," NBN Co CEO Billow Morrow said in a statement issued today.

"These initiatives are key components in progressing NBN Co’s move to a mix of broadband technologies which will help us scale-up the NBN rollout across the country," Morrow said.

"The early results and real customer experiences ... demonstrate that existing technologies such as the copper network are capable of playing a vital role in delivering the NBN quicker, more efficiently and cheaper for all Australians."

Follow Rohan on Twitter: @rohan_p

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9 Comments

Alias Fakename

1

So what about the other 95% of people that DON'T live within half a kilometer of the exchange?

And these speeds will remain consistent when the exchange is serving to thousands of connected customers, right?

Bpat

2

Congrats Liberals, you hit the first level of FTTP speed (now ancient history). Give me a call when you can do it at 1+ km at 1Gb/s. The NBN can currently do this everywhere their fiber is properly deployed.

FYI computer world, your comments policy doesn't exist (404 error)

Sgt. Kipp

3

AF: AFAIK you don't need to live within 500m of the exchange. It's 500m from a streetside fibre cabinet. So providing you're within 500m from your cabinet, you might be lucky. Fibre runs from the cabinets back to the exchange.

http://delimiter.com.au/2013/04/12/fttn-cabinets-hideous-say-designers/

Each cabinet is connected to a fairly fixed number of homes.. but I'm not sure how many. I'm also not sure of the capacity of the fibre from the cabinets to the exchange. One would hope that they're enough to do 100/30mbps for each residence simultaneously.

Francis Young

4

What is the 10-year operating cost of a cabinet?

Francis Young

5

How many cabinets are required to service one FSAM of 3000 premises?

How many premises in the cabinet can be supplied with 1000/400 Mbps? (Easy - zero.)

Frank

6

How many people actually need 1000/400? Do you know any home users with that now? I work at a univeristy with twin 10gig Fibre links and most of the time we can't tell it's not home ADSL because of bottlenecks between here and everywhere else.

I'd be bloody stoked with100/40 Right now I get about 8mbps and we make do. I actually have no real problems with that, but I'm not downloading movies much so I don't have that much need for more..( and neither do 90% of the rest of the population.)

Considering how much the 1000 plans cost, I (like the people I know who actually ARE on the fibre NBN) would more likely go for a cheaper 25mbps connection. not only is that far and away enough for the vast majority of people, I won't be able to blow away my available download in a few hours. What good is 1000mbps if you run out of data and get shaped a week into the month? Seriously, If unlimited broadband (real unlimited, not the fake unlimited we get that is actually limited) was common and a 1000mbps link was $50 a month.. I'd probably see the value.. but for most home users.. I'd be hard pressed to give a good reason why 100/40 isn't acceptable.. and I'm a sysadmin who hosts sites and stuff on his connection. Since the NBN is costing way way more than we were originally told, they won't be dropping the prices much anytime soon as they have a lot of money to get back. So our taxes pay for a network, then we pay again to use it.

The upside is that with a cabinet every 500 metres, it would not be hard later on to roll out FTTP if someone decides to. My area was in the labor list of "being rolled out" and it turns out that all they had done is coloured in a map.. nothing had actually been done at all. So now I'm in the "to be rolled out" area again, only this time a telstra guy was out the front of my house doing the preliminary work before the roll out so at least I know it's happening this time around. (plus the telstra guy outside the house told me it was about to happen.) Don't know at this point if it will be FTTP or FTTN but to be honest, I'd be totally happy with either. I already get up to 90mbps on my optus 4G.. I'd say that by the time the NBN is fully rolled out, it'll be mostly obsolete in a ton of areas.

Nick G

7

@Frank, You actually answered your question of "why 100/40 isn't acceptable.." yourself with "by the time the NBN is fully rolled out, it'll be mostly obsolete in a ton of areas". Also you said "The upside is that with a cabinet every 500 metres, it would not be hard later on to roll out FTTP", true, afterall who cares about the money being wasted by doing this... and then you wonder "So our taxes pay for a network, then we pay again to use it". I suggest you instead of coming up with rubbish analysis of your own on Australia's bandwidth needs without considering ANYTHING to do your own research on the technology FTTP and FTTN and also the cost involved (long term too), after all you are in the industry you claim, comments like yours really grinds my gears!

Dave Abrahams

8

Always worth noting the detail '... FTTN test that didn't involve any end users'. BTW here's a Danish trial without users, over a fibre network at: 43 Terrabit/second that's 43000 gigabits!
http://www.gizmodo.com.au/2014/08/the-worlds-fastest-network-lets-you-download-a-movie-in-0-2-milliseconds/

Daniel Rossi

9

" that involves the use of HFC for connecting premises in areas where HFC networks exist; "

But that is simply trapping customers with Telstra paying double for their internet. how is this part of the NBN ?

I have had 110mbps internet since the start of 2012, 96mbps is not 100mbps so same old "up to" scam crap as ADSL. It's not consistent. If I am paying for 100mbps I better be getting 100mbps not 96mbps !

I am not looking forward to the droves joining and congesting it to 10mbps and making it drop packets left right and centre !

One user alpha tested, that's going to work out well for them. Way to go rushing it and thinking that is evidence. It's alpha testing stage how is that even worthy of releasing ? The hornets nest is awaiting them. Turdbull did say to cover his own ass FTTP "where possible" because we all know the condition of the pits. Just wait until it starts raining.

Has anyone ever bothered to request a review on the copper line fault reports ? That would give a good indication what is going to happen. I doubt there is any usable lines that have not been repatched already. they will have to run new lines of copper cable LOL.

Dumbest people on the planet just to prop up their investors at the expense of end users, innovation and progress.

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