Optus couldn't wait for NBN Co WBA to release its pricing

Despite wanting to wait for a confirmed wholesale broadband agreement before publishing pricing, negotiations were taking longer than initially expected

Optus has announced NBN mainland pricing for consumers only, opting not to wait for a finalised wholesale broadband agreement (WBA) with NBN Co as the process was taking “longer than initially envisaged”.

A spokesperson for the telco told Computerworld Australia that Optus was “working closely with all parties” to reach a “commercially acceptable” NBN WBA but negotiations had not yet been finalised.

“Whilst there are still some issues to work through, we’re negotiating in good faith and are hopeful we will come to a resolution as it is in all parties’ interests to reach an agreement,” the spokesperson said.

Former Optus director of government and corporate affairs, Maha Krishnapillai, in October, said the telco would wait for further clarity and the confirmed WBA before publishing the cost of its NBN services.

“However, as the process is taking longer than we had initially envisaged back in October and strong customer interest in our NBN offerings, we made a decision to launch our initial NBN plans on a month-by-month basis while WBA negotiations continue," the spokesperson said.

The telco’s seven month-by-month plans will launch on 21 November under the existing NBN Co trial agreement but will be for consumer and ‘home office’ customers only. Small to medium business plans will not be released until early next year with pricing details to be announced closer to the launch.

The entry level plans start at $39.99 per month for current Optus postpaid mobile customers, or $49.99 for those without a current contract.

It includes up to 40GB of data, delivered over NBN Co's first speed tier, which had a download speed of 12 megabits per second and an upload speed of one megabit per second.

Customers living in the first mainland release sites can also opt for stand-alone broadband plans starting at 59.99 for 120GB data up to 79.99 for 500GB of data.

Bundled plans will also be available and will start at $64.94 for 120GB, on the $109 and $129 ‘yes’ Fusion plans of which the latter offers 1TB of data.

The telco is touting the “free NBN Wi-Fi gateway” with all plans and charging no fees for service installation and set-up at this stage.

According to the spokesperson more plans will be released as the NBN roll-out continues which will include Optus MeTV.

Optus joins the likes of Exetel, iPrimus, iiNet, and Internode, which have all released pricing for the mainland sites with Telstra remaining tight-lipped on its own details.

Krishnapillai is due to finish up in the role on 30 November following his resignation from the position after three and a half years, citing personal reasons.

Optus general manager of government and corporate affairs, Clare Gill, will be acting as director of government and corporate affairs in the interim.

Follow Chloe Herrick on Twitter: @chloe_CW

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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Tags TelstraiiNetoptusinternodeNational Broadband Network (NBN)ExetelWBAwholesale broadband agreementMaha KrishnapillaiNBN Co deal

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