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Australia’s NBN “will not fix” TV reception

NBN construction will take around a decade to complete

NBN construction will take around a decade to complete

Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN) will not solve the issues many Aussies have with their TV reception, but should improve the delivery of video-on-demand services, according to NBN Co, the firm mandated by the Australian government to design, build and operate the country’s new fibre-based broadband network.

As the NBN Co. Discovery Truck continues its tour of New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory, a demonstrator working on the truck has written in a blog post about what construction of the NBN network will mean for Australian TV viewers.

“A common theme of frustration among visitors to the NBN Co Discovery Truck is that some have been struggling with poor TV reception for years – especially in the regional areas we have been visiting,” writes Nichola Parker, Demonstrator for the NBN Truck. “A common question is: “will the NBN fix my TV reception?”. Ultimately the answer is “no” in relation to broadcast free to air (FTA) TV stations.”

Ms. Parker goes on to say that the NBN will have positive consequences for Australia’s growing IPTV and on-demand sectors, with managed-network IPTV services such as Fetch TV getting a significant boost from the superior connections that fibre broadband provides over copper-based DSL.

“Without doubt, television is in the midst of a global revolution, and here in Australia, our national plan to build the high speed broadband connectivity across the country will place us exceptionally well to reap the benefits […] So, while the NBN will not fix your reception, it is definitely helping to open up new markets for us to consume our television over the internet and have a higher level of control over our viewing.”

The entire NBN construction project is valued at AU$ 38bn (US$ 39bn) and is expected to take around a decade to complete, with 93 per cent of Australian premises receiving broadband via fibre optic cable, four per cent via fixed-wireless and the remaining three per cent by satellite.

Once it is completed, NBN Co. plans to offer wholesale access to the network, delivering speeds of up to 100Mbps to 93 per cent of Australian premises.

Read the full blog post here.

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  • NBN was wrong to not include RF Overlay in the network specs.
    This happened due to strong lobbying by Broadcast Australia who had just spent lots of money upgrading their terrestrial transmitters to digital standards.
    FTTH via NBN was seen as a competitor to their revenues.
    RF Overlay is a very inexpensive “add-on” to any FTTH network, and ITU standard, which injects a third wavelength on to the fibre and which carries all the Tv and Radio programming to fibre subscribers.
    Shame on Broadcast Australia and shame on the decision makers for not adopting this world-standard option.

    John Nixon on Australia’s NBN “will not fix” TV reception

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