Regional reseller said NBN plan better than Telstra's Next G proposal

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Regional reseller said NBN plan better than Telstra's Next G proposal

The Toowoomba-based reseller said the Australian Government has made the right decision in proposing to build its own $43 billion National Broadband Network (NBN).

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced this morning that the Federal Government will form a state-owned enterprise to build a FTTH network in combination with private suppliers.

Grieve told CRN, the proposal works better for regional users than Telstra's plans to move everyone to the Next G network, as part of its NBN tender.

"Next G is slow in this region, not just Telstra but Optus as well," he said.

"10 percent of in-land Toowoomba can't get broadband because there are no wires in the city.

"Coming from an IT perspective, we are currently trialling Optus' Next G network and it just goes to dial-up speeds, which is just useless."

Grieve said Computer Ambulance was located between two Telstra towers and had a customer based at one of the towers and all they could get was dial-up speeds through the Next G network.

"The Government was subsidising satellite use but that was scrapped because Optus said its Next G network worked."

 "I'm not saying the technology is bad, it has a lot of potential."

"We just can't rely on the technology for internet connection.

He said the Government had to step in and do something about the NBN because people in remote areas wouldn't have been able to get the access they needed.

"Had the Government given it to Optus, then Telstra would've brought in better technology and would've taken the cream of the crop and we would've been under the telco's thumb.

"It would've been difficult for anyone else to make a profit out of it."

Martin Aungle, corporate communications manager at Dimension Data said the reseller had a lot of regional broadband projects through healthcare and education sectors.

He said regional centres will benefit the most from a Government run broadband network.

 "It will also probably make it the reseller community competitive when it comes to bidding for broadband-based tenders in remote areas," said Aungle.

"At the moment carriers carry a lot of clout for these types of projects."

However Aungle told CRN it was too soon what the direct opportunities will be for resellers and carriers.

"Once the NBN is built there will be huge benefits for technology like video application," he said.

"Resellers and integrators playing in the space will see the benefits of working in a distributed fashion."

Paul Budde, telecommunications analyst of BuddeComm, said this will be one of the most ambitious infrastructure ever undertaken in Australia and will be the most ambitious Fibre-to-the Home network anywhere undertaken in the world.

"This network is not just for high-speed internet and enterainment but more importantly, for healthcare, education, smart grids, etc," he said.

"The nature of the investment further highlights this it is an open network and the infrastructure will be made available on a wholesale level.

"This makes it possible to deliver that infrastructure on a utilities' basis which, of course, is going to make access to the network very affordable to the end users."

According to Budde the government's proposal basically guarantees the investment money for the project and also indicates the use of the infrastructure for other sectors (healthcare, etc).

Healthcare will be able to independently provide e-health services to Australians over the network, without these people needing to have a paid subscription.

"So what is happening is that there won't be a gatekeeper involved who clips the ticket of everything what is happening over the network," he said.

"The accompanying regulatory documentation doesn't give Telstra any room to manoeuvre."

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