nbn Co recently announced its half-year results, with the company saying the rollout of the Australian-government funded nbn network is accelerating.
Research company, Ovum, has come forth in supporting the business, saying the growth rate is encouraging, especially considering the fibre-to-the-node service has only just come on line, and the HFC based service is yet to launch commercially.
Ovum senior telecoms consultant, Craig Skinner, said tits premises ready-for-service more than doubled in 2015 to 1.67 million, with growth accelerating in the second half of 2015. Skinner mentioned that the rollout is on track, but is still in early days.
“nbn also announced that it has contracted 10 network partners to build its fibre network. These build agreements with contractors are vital to the nbn keeping its network build on track.
“Crucially, these new delivery contracts incorporate key performance-based metrics that will keep contractors honest in terms of delivering the fibre network on time, with quality of service guarantees in tow,” he said.
According to Skinner, the industry is still awaiting news that nbn has finalised management construction agreements with Telstra and Optus for HFC, another key part of the nbn network deployment puzzle.
“Ovum agrees with Morrow that the main debate around nbn should shift to focus more on what the network will be used for and how industry will innovate to bring valuable local content to market, however, the main focus for nbn itself is to continue to ramp up the network deployment and ensure a smooth migration process for end customers.”
Industry body, ACCAN, has expressed its concerns regarding the affordability of nbn services.
“The 2016 nbn corporate plan, released in August last year, predicted that the average revenue per end user would increase to $44 by FY2018. At $43, it has nearly hit that level already. Maintaining the CVC pricing level is likely to result in services being unattainable and unaffordable for consumers, result in lower take up rates of services and reduce the efficient use of the nbn network,” ACCAN CEO, Teresa Corbin, said.
Corbin added that the increase in data consumption without a reduction in capacity pricing impacts on the affordability of broadband services.
“While we know that there is an examination of CVC pricing being undertaken currently, not acting now is making broadband services more expensive for consumers in the interim period. ACCAN would like to see action by nbn to reduce CVC pricing,” Corbin said.