NBN is available, should I sign up now?

Many areas have now been advised that they can obtain NBN, and we’re asked regularly, should we sign up?  Well, if you’re adventurous, why not!  But if you have a stable internet connection that is suiting your needs at the moment, our recommendation at the moment is, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

You may have seen in the news over the last couple of days, that NBN Co have decided to halt the roll-out of the HFC internet.  This is the NBN’s solution to running high speed internet over the existing cabling that your Foxtel Cable TV service may run on.  The roll-out of the NBN has changed substantially since it began rolling out.  If you’re unaware of the history, it was originally planned to be rolled out with FTTP (Fibre to the Premises), which as you’d imagine, delivers fibre right to your house or office.  This would have been the ideal connection type, as the theoretical maximum speed of connections is not yet using this technology to its fullest.  Then came a change in government, and politics aside, the plan was changed to move to FTTN (Fibre to the Node) and HFC (Hybrid Fibre-Coaxial), and a Wireless/Satellite technologies for rural and remote areas, we won’t go into these.

FTTN works by running fibre to a Node box, to close proximity to a number of properties, and running the last part of the connection via the existing copper cabling you use for your landline and ADSL service.  HFC, as discussed above, delivers Foxtel Cable and Telstra Cable Internet services to homes already, from a closer connection to Fibre, similar to FTTN.

The problem is with both FTTN and HFC, is that the existing networks are both aging and causing issues, whereas the FTTP model bypasses all the existing cabling and would have run a connection straight to your door.

Right, now we understand how the technologies differ, in a simple way, the problems that have been reported on HFC, are drop outs and slow speeds.  Both of FTTN and HFC services are experiencing issues, however, HFC seems to be suffering more.

What’s our recommendation?  Well, we say, if you’re happy with your ADSL connection (especially if you get more than 8Mbps download speed), and don’t suffer from major disruptions and drop outs, we think you should stay on the existing technology.  NBN Co are not disconnecting these services for at least 18 months from when NBN becomes available.  Just because the NBN advertises to deliver fasters speeds, it doesn’t guarantee you will.  For example, we jumped on the NBN a couple of months after it was released, and sometimes, during peak afternoon and evening, we are lucky to get 5Mbps.  Sure, that’s better than the 3Mbps we used to get, but it’s a gamble.  Remember, once you transfer to NBN, you can’t go back!  If on the other hand you have terrible ADSL speeds, drop outs all the time and can’t get a port at the exchange for ADSL, sure, when NBN becomes available jump on it, it can’t be any worse!

Did you know we offer assistance to troubleshoot your internet service?  Sometimes your ISP asks you to perform troubleshooting steps or to replace a modem to see if that is the problem.  We can help, so if you need any assistance, please contact us, we are only too happy to help.  Likewise if the offerings from providers are confusing to you, we can give you some pointers in getting the best value connection in your area.