Feeds

NBN Co lights up on mainland

Fibre for farmers and marginal electorates

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Australia’s controversial national broadband network took one small step towards actual deployment with the click of a specially-constructed media-stunt red button officially activating the first mainland site in Armidale, NSW yesterday.

Two years into the project, NBN Co still have some significant hurdles to clear before getting the A$36 billion construction project up to speed.

The network has 600 customers in Tasmania, the first pilot site, and is targeting 800 customers on the mainland by September. The Armidale portion of the network can reach 2500 premises but launched with seven customers. Another NBN pilot site Townsville was slated to be the first city activated, but cyclone Yasi hit the area earlier this year.

NBN Co still needs to finalise a network closure and access contract with Telstra. Despite persistent speculation that the deal is weeks away neither board signed off on the deal.

Under the public terms of the agreement, Telstra will be paid $9 billion to shut down its copper network and make its access ducts and pipes available for NBN’s fibre deployment.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission also needs to approve the deal and the details of Telstra’s interim separation of its wholesale and retail businesses.

NBN Co is also yet to name the lucky network construction contractor that would reap around $12 billion for the full-scale rollout. The network operator called off the onerous tender process citing high prices, and leaving 14 potential bidders dangling.

Communications minister Stephen Conroy maintains that the tender process was called off in early April because the companies had tried to “rip off” NBN Co. "That is why they suspended the previous process - because they weren't getting prices that were inside their business plan," he said.

However, it is hard to believe that any vendor would have the temerity to try and fudge numbers placed in front of Alcatel Lucent stalwarts, NBN CEO Mike Quigley and CFO Jean-Pascal Beaufret.

In light of the rip-off allegations, NBN Co has been negotiating deals directly with individual companies in the last six weeks.

The incessant white noise surrounding Quigley and Beaufret’s prior careers at Alcatel during the bribery scandal means the NBN Co executive team will be under more pressure and scrutiny than ever to negotiate a water tight, transparent agreement within budget. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.