The National Broadband Network has started rolling out faster fibre-to-the-kerb to select metropolitan areas in all the mainland states, in a world-first deployment of the technology.
The NBN started as fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) under Labor, which would have offered homes and businesses the fastest speed possible. The coalition replaced that with fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) — using the old copper lines from the nearest neighbourhood “node” to the premises – at much slower speeds.
The NBN then developed fibre-to-the-kerb technology as a ‘third way’ compromise. The configuration, which the company calls FTTC (fibre-to-the-curb), brings fibre all the way to the front of the house or business, so the length of copper is reduced for better performance.
With this morning’s announcement, the NBN became the first broadband wholesaler in the world to physically roll out FTTC. Trials with some customers will take place this year while a commercial launch is scheduled for next year.
“We will be focusing our efforts in the next few months on ensuring we understand how to scale the FTTC network rollout across the country and also working with our retail customers to trial the product in preparation for its launch next year,” said NBN chief network engineering officer Peter Ryan.
Ryan added that the start of widespread FTTC deployment meant some homes and businesses will have their scheduled NBN availability date revised.
“We encourage all Australians to check their address on our website to get the most up-to-date information, find out what technology we are using to build the network as well as how to get the best experience out of their internet connection.”
The NBN had announced in April that it would eventually provide FTTC to 1 million premises, replacing fibre-to-the-node in those areas. The full list of suburbs that will receive fibre-to-the-kerb this year are: