NBN prepares for Q4 launch of G.fast services on FTTC

New offering to target enterprises

Credit: NBN Co

NBN is preparing to offer higher speed services to premises connected using its newest fixed-line technology, fibre to the curb (FTTC).

The company is planning to offer higher speeds for FTTC-connected premises based on G.fast in Q4. NBN will offer higher speeds both for Traffic Class 4 (standard broadband) and its TC-2 business-grade products.

The company is expected to focus at least initially on offering faster speeds to the enterprise market, rather than to FTTC-connected households.

NBN previously indicated it would seek to launch G.fast services in 2017 following a 2015 trial of the technology.

The G.fast standard, which was approved in late 2014, can deliver “fibre-like speeds” within 400 metres of a distribution point, according to the International Telecommunication Union.

The standard is designed for broadband technologies that still rely on twisted-pair copper wiring to hook up premises. G.fast can offer up to 1 gigabit per second over 100 metres of copper, and up to 400 megabits per second over 300 metres.

Initially NBN is likely to deliver sub-gigabit speeds with G.fast.

Earlier this year the company announced it was bringing forward its plans to offer an enterprise Ethernet product for businesses with fibre to the premises connections. That offering will also launch in Q4.

FTTC is the newest of the technologies that currently comprise NBN’s fixed-line broadband portfolio.

NBN earlier this month announced the commercial launch of FTTC National Broadband Network services. The company is undertaking a conservative, phased rollout of FTTC services, beginning in two suburbs while it works to “optimise the customer experience”.

Currently the technology is expected to be used to connect around 1.5 million households and businesses, after NBN earlier in April revealed it would shift 440,000 premises from its planned fibre to the node (FTTN) and hybrid fibre-coaxial (HFC) footprints to FTTC.

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