NBN has announced it will boost the data quotas available to end users on its Sky Muster satellite service.
The company said that maximum monthly data usage per household will increase from 150 gigabytes a month to 300GB a month. Maximum usage during a peak period will increase from 75GB a month to 150GB a month.
The company said it would also increase to 45GB from 30GB the average peak data allowance that retail service providers (RSPs) can offer to end users.
“Late last year we made the decision to re-purpose our second satellite, previously slated as a dormant backup service to actively share the load in delivering more data to customers on the Sky Muster service,” said NBN CEO Bill Morrow.
After spending the last year reviewing and testing the capabilities of the service, we are now comfortable that we have the capacity to offer increased data packages to retailers.”
The CEO said that NBN would continue to “to optimise the pricing model and data plans of the Sky Muster service with further offerings on business and education services expected to be available in the next 12-18 months”.
NBN earlier this year that 147 individual network fixes and optimisations to its satellite service. End users on the service had reported encountered a range of problems that manifested when the total Sky Muster customer base hit 25,000, NBN’s chief customer officer, John Simon revealed in May.
Simon also foreshadowed changes to the service’s data usage policy. The NBN executive indicated that the company would look at the potential changes to speed tiers on the service; currently, the wholesale speeds of 25/5Mbps are available.
“The doubling of wholesale data allowances will make a significant difference to communications in the bush,” said Kristy Sparrow, the founder Better Internet for Rural, Regional and Remote (BIRRR) Australia.
“Rural businesses are not one size fits all, and if we are to encourage growth and innovation in regional areas, we need to ensure connectivity is on par with our urban counterparts.
“Two of the other improvements which BIRRR has been lobbying hard for — an NBN contact centre and outage information for Sky Muster users — have also been recently launched by NBN, and we look forward to continuing our collaborative work with NBN and the federal government to find solutions to regional Australia's telecommunications issues.”
Sparrow said the group will continue to lobby for improved reliability, changes to off peak hours, business grade services and a larger fixed wireless footprint to help alleviate pressure the satellite service.