NBN brings HFC to Western Australia

Optus, TPG and Exetel offer HFC services in Ocean Reef, WA

NBN has formally launched commercial hybrid-fibre coaxial (HFC) services in Western Australia. The services are the first to be based on the HFC assets NBN is obtaining from Telstra.

Some 2300 premises in Ocean Reef in WA are now able to order HFC services. Currently, Optus, TPG and Exetel are all offering HFC services in the area.

“It has taken a huge effort by all of our team at NBN to get us to this point, a massive amount of work has been done with Telstra, our delivery partners, our technology vendors and our customers to be able to get here,” NBN’s chief customer officer, John Simon, said.

Telstra’s HFC network, which NBN is progressively taking ownership of, is set to be used for the majority of NBN HFC connections.

More than 3 million homes and businesses are expected eventually be connected to the National Broadband Network using the technology, with NBN planning to have 900,000 premises able to order an HFC-based broadband connection by June next year and 200,000 active users.

NBN launched its first HFC services in the Brisbane suburb of Redcliffe in June. Those services are based on HFC infrastructure formerly owned by Optus.

NBN earlier this month revealed details of its construction partners that will carry out work in the Telstra HFC footprint. Under a $1.6 billion agreement with Telstra signed in April, the telco will take charge of the planning, design and management for the bulk of the HFC rollout.

“It is worth remembering that we will actually be one of the first operators in the world to deliver open access wholesale services over an HFC network so we have broken a lot of new ground in these last couple of years and now that hard work will pay off for our customers and end-users,” Simon said.

NBN is preparing to roll out DOCSIS 3.1 for its HFC network in 2017. The cable broadband standard will potentially offer a significant boost to HFC speeds

“There has been huge debate about the various technologies that we are using to build the NBN but with the recent very exciting developments around new technologies like DOCSIS 3.1 and the Gigabit speeds it will bring people have begun to understand what a fantastic asset HFC networks will be for Australia,” Simon said.

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