TelSoc has held its first forum on the future of Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN). Three papers from that forum are published in this issue. TelSoc is planning a second forum, discussing the user potential of the NBN, in October 2019. The historical reprint in this issue is also NBN-related about online learning. The technical papers in this issue concern architectural issues in the Internet of Things and cybersecurity. The Journal welcomes further contributions on telecommunications and the digital economy.
How well are we tracking to achieve the original mission of the NBN of ‘Building Broadband For All Australians? Four specialist speakers will canvass many of the issues related to the provision of nationwide services and applications to enhance the lifestyle of the end users. How might we ‘grow’ the number of new customers, and deal with the vexed issues related to those residents currently excluded from broadband? What do systematic field research investigations show about the notion of ‘digital inclusion’ as a measurement of Australia’s digital divide? Do we now need a revamped USO, together with the introduction of an affordable national broadband policy? Have customer pricing policies been a serious bottleneck to improving the rate of NBN related customer service take up – could that be changed for the better? Looking elsewhere, New Zealand has followed a different path to Australia with some notable broadband policy successes. How might we learn from their experiences?
This article summarises the presentation given by the author at the TelSoc NBN Futures forum held in Melbourne on 31 July 2019. The author spoke in favour of retaining NBN Co in public ownership, at least for the medium term and until a long-term plan and evolution pathway has been established. Such a plan is needed to ensure that Australians have affordable access to world’s best broadband service and that delivers social and economic inclusion.
On 31 July 2019, TelSoc held an NBN Futures Forum in Melbourne to outline possible future ownership options for Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN). The resulting conversation provided a useful insight into the range of social, economic, technical and policy issues that need to be considered in order to reach a balanced and properly informed view on the most appropriate future ownership model for the NBN.
The future of the $51 billion Australian National Broadband Network (NBN) remains unknown, with the Government still to commit to a course of action after the current build phase. Industry representatives have recently voiced their concerns about a potential future sale of the NBN and how this would occur. In response, the Telecommunications Association is hosting a public forum on the future of the NBN on 31 July 2019. Papers in the June 2019 issue of the Journal include discussion on consumer interest in 5G in New Zealand, the history of Australian mail handling and technical papers covering a range of interesting topics.
The NBN has changed many times in complexity and composition, but it is now running at high speed and set for completion in the next two years. What does it take to get this mammoth task done?
This presentation will provide an overview of the current status of the NBN and discuss what the government can do with the NBN when the rollout is completed.
The National Broadband Network (NBN) should create long-term benefit for Australia. The most direct effect is to increase the availability of high-speed broadband. Based on publicly available information and census data, we can show where and by how much higher broadband speeds will be available to Australian households and businesses. In this presentation, we show maps of where broadband availability is improved by the NBN.
The NBN can make a difference both in terms of the geographical availability of broadband access and in the maximum access speeds provided. We find that the NBN will extend fixed-line broadband availability only marginally. In terms of access speed, we find that a further 17% of the population will have access to 10 Mb/s downstream and a further 65% of the population will have access to 25 Mb/s.
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