The entire channel should be looking to seize infrastructure and services opportunities presented by the Federal Government’s $43 billion National Broadband Network (NBN), according to one networking and wireless distributor.
Lan 1 managing director, Daniel Lee, claimed the NBN was the most exciting ICT development in Australia’s history and said the boutique player was getting ready to take advantage of the rollout.
“If there’s ever going to be a defining moment for Australia, it’s going to be over the next five years. The Government is saying we have to have the next-generation broadband network. It’s going to be a very interesting time not just in IT, but also the way we work and communicate,” he said.
For Lan 1, 802.11n would be a massive growth area, driven by next-generation fibre deployments and back-haul upgrades, Lee said.
“NBN will give everyone Internet access, so the difference will be in services and the value you bring to the table,” he said. “But again, if you don’t identify, innovate and focus, you will be lost.
“We are working on greenfield projects at the moment, and while it’s not mandated yet, all will soon have to deliver fibre-to-the-home. A lot will be wired, but 10 per cent will be wireless and at $4.3 billion, that’s a huge opportunity.”
Lee claimed the days were gone when wireless was just used to transmit data and offerings and now stretched into voice and video applications. He also predicted the NBN would open up new on-demand services opportunities in security and storage.
“There are very successful companies like ManageNet, Brennan IT and Earthwave providing different managed services to customers in security, which is a very mature offering now,” Lee explained. “Managed storage hasn’t grown however, because the cost of transferring traffic is still very expensive. Hopefully NBN will solve that.”
This increased focus on services would trigger wider convergence and consolidation across traditional telco ISP and managed services providers, Lee added.
“Tier-two telcos like iiNet, Primus and TPG were more interested in providing the tail and letting their resellers or others do what they want to do on top. But they are also evolving because they know that with the NBN coming, it will level the playing field and it will be the services they provide that will differentiate them,” he said.
“One looks at services as a must-have; the other as a necessary evil. What we’re seeing now is the convergence of the managed services provider and the tier-two telco.”
To read ARN’s in-depth interview with Lan 1, check out the Distribution Directions profile in our new April 21 edition.