Internode and iPrimus have flagged their involvement with the $43 billion National Broadband Network’s (NBN’s) initial rollout in Tasmania.
Their comments come after iiNet revealed plans to the Sydney Morning Herald to move existing customers over to the pending fibre network as early as mid-next year.
NBNco’s subsidiary, Tasmanian NBNco (TNBNco), is looking after the state’s fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) project and recently awarded its fibre optic cable tender to Corning Cable Systems.
Internode carrier relations manager, John Lindsay, said the ISP was actively engaged with NBNco and TNBNco. He conceded it was still too early to pinpoint when the fibre network would be ready to retail, but was confident TNBNco was moving work at a steady pace.
“We are obviously going to participate; when we are invited to,” Lindsay said. “I can’t talk about what [TNBNco’s] plans are but what I can say is the organisation appears to have things well in hand and is doing a good job at moving to some earlier trials.”
While Lindsay was tightlipped about TNBNco’s schedules, he said iiNet’s goal to begin customer migration to the NBN by mid-2010 were attainable.
Internode claims to be well-placed to become one of the first ISPs to utilise the Tasmanian fibre link as it already sells FTTH services in the mainland. It does not expect to engage in any preparation work prior to the network’s launch, save for some refinements to its service provisioning interface.
iPrimus is also planning to join Tasmania’s NBN but saw it as a collective effort rather than a race to be the first on-board.
“Everyone will move over at the same time when it is ready,” Primus Telecom CEO, Ravi Bhatia, said. “All of us are working with the Tasmanian provider at the same time.
“There is no timeframe at present but I can tell you it is pretty far away. When it happens, it is going to be simultaneous [for all ISPs].”