The organization charged with rolling out the National Broadband Network (NBN) has been accused of wasting taxpayers’ cash by installing precisely the same web services on top of current broadband in some areas.
Wholesale broadband network businesses say below the Coalition Government, NBN Co is stifling investment in the sector and leaving consumers worse off.
Michael Sparksman, the chief executive of OPENetworks, told Lateline that two years following his organization installed a superfast broadband network in a building in Sydney Park Village, NBN Co installed the very same service.
“It is exactly the identical as building two super freeways to a neighborhood,” he mentioned.
“They offer the very same solutions and facilities over which the trains and trucks and automobiles can travel and so there is no benefit in obtaining duplication of that infrastructure.”
LBNCo chief executive Steve Picton mentioned his firm had also been overbuilt.
“We’ve surely seen it take place in a couple of our main estates in Western Australia,” he mentioned.
“We’ve got a main facility off towards the airport at Mascot where once once again, one of our one hundred megabit buildings, in that particular case utilizing a diverse technology, has currently been overbuilt.”
Lateline has obtained a letter displaying that NBN Co plans to roll out broadband at Wentworth Point, an estate with about three,000 houses already serviced by Mr Picton’s company.
“It makes no sense. This is delivering a superfast broadband network, it is entirely equivalent in terms of the service levels we’re supplying inside the estate so it’s total duplication,” he mentioned.
Mr Sparksman said overbuilding was killing off investment in the sector.
“Residents and occupiers of the company across the road have requested that we extend our network into their constructing and we would be ready to do so but unfortunately the investment risk is now if NBN Co will overbuild us there, there won’t be a return for us to do so,” he stated.
That leaves organizations like Brightwell Transport stuck in the middle.
Organizations caught up in broadband stand-off
Brightwell Transport is across the road from apartments that have superfast broadband from both NBN and OPENetworks.
But Brightwell’s spokesman Cameron Dorrington mentioned they can’t get access to either.
He mentioned private firms do not want to take the risk of getting overbuilt, but the NBN Co stated they were still years off.
“They say they are not rolling out at this area at this time and their forward projections are saying it’s about three years ahead of they’re preparing to do that,” he stated.
“They’re taking the very good buildings in the area, leaving the challenging web sites for somebody else.”
In March, the Federal Government outlined its policy on overbuilding, saying: “it need to ordinarily steer clear of duplicating or overbuilding current higher-speed broadband networks in new estates except in situations exactly where it has obtained consent from the Government for this in advance.”
A statement from the NBN Co said: “Until an area has been declared as ‘adequately served’ with higher-speed broadband, then NBN has an obligation to construct its network in that area.”
A spokesperson for Communications Minister Mitch Fifield said in a statement that the Government was not conscious of any NBN overbuilding in new developments.
Watch the complete story tonight on Lateline at 9.30pm (AEDT) on ABC News 24 and ten.30pm on ABC Tv.
Topics: web-technologies, details-and-communication, wireless-communication, federal-government, australia, wa