FTTB pilot plans underway

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NBN Co has announced that four telcos have agreed to participate in the company’s Fibre-to-the-Building (FTTB) pilot in the Melbourne suburbs of Carlton, Parkville and Brunswick.

The companies that have signed up are:

  • iiNet
  • M2
  • Optus
  • Telstra

It is estimated that the pilot will run for three months, during which time NBN Co and its telco partners will evaluate all aspects of the construction, installation, operation, service performance and the overall customer experience.

NBN Co has installed VDSL2 vectoring equipment, which enables the delivery of high-speed broadband services over each buildings existing telephone cabling, in eight high rises – including a mix of apartments, retail and office buildings.

Preliminary tests of the technology by NBN Co in December 2013 produced download speeds of more than 100 Mbps and upload speeds of more than 40 Mbps.

NBN Co’s Chief Technology Officer, Gary McLaren, said:

“According to the Strategic Review, up to 12,000 buildings containing around one million individual premises could be served by FTTB. This pilot scheme, and the Fibre-to-the-Node trials we’re currently scoping, will help us determine the fastest and most cost-effective way to deliver access to high speed broadband sooner.

“Retail telcos, local councils, the building owners and tenants are all enthusiastic participants in the process. We are now raring to test the consumer experience along with our wholesale customers.”

The company’s Strategic Review, issued in December last year, recommended that the National Broadband Network could be rolled out faster and at a lower cost by combining proven technologies with existing capable networks.

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